In a post by Morragotwong Phumplab, assistant professor at Thammasat University's Faculty of Liberal Arts, Bangkok said "The governments of Asean have to be unified and present a united front to negotiate with major powers like China (and its growing middle class) for the benefit of each country and the region in the long run,".
The uneven performance in tourism among Asean countries has led some observers to suggest better tourism cooperation and collaboration ideas to maintain an equilibrium. It said ASEAN countries must present a more unified tourism programme, in order to promoting their own countries and to overcome current economic challenges, enhancing ties among members..
It said Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar are the three favourite destinations for Chinese tourists who have also maintained their preference to tour other Asean countries.
Morragotwong said when coupled with increased arrivals from other nations, all Asean member countries will benefit if they can collaborate more in terms of having a common tour package.
Kritchanat Kulratchahirun, chief executive of the NB Holiday Tour company said “A majority of tourists are sticking to their travel plans in Asean, despite the global economic downturn and strong currencies of certain countries, because they want new experiences travelling,.”
According to the Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report 2019, Singapore is the number one destination among Asean members, followed by Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, Brunei, the Philippines, Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar.
In a survey of 140 countries, Singapore is ranked at 17th, Malaysia (29), Thailand (31), Indonesia (40), Vietnam (63), Brunei (72), the Philippines (75), Laos (97) and Cambodia (98). Myanmar is not listed.
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