UNWTO Regional statistical workshop for Mekong River countries/regions
Update: Aug 14, 2014
(TITC) - From 25 – 31 July 2014, United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) in collaboration with Ministry of Tourism of Cambodia and Government of the Republic of Korea held regional workshop for Mekong River countries on Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) and Tourism Statistics in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

The workshop aimed to evaluate current situation and capability to apply TSA in the Mekong River countries including Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Viet Nam; and provide UNWTO’s guidance on the practical implementation of TSA documents.

The participants of the workshop included 33 representatives of statistical offices; tourism offices of Mekong River countries; representatives of Asian Development Bank (ADB), Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO) and UNWTO experts.

Speaking at the workshop, Secretary of State of Tourism of Cambodia, Mr. Ly Bunthoeun affirmed that tourism sector had played a vital role in socioeconomic development through generating opportunities for investment, employment, additional incomes, living standard improvement of locals, poverty alleviation, community development, and also it had further contributed to protect and preserve cultural and natural heritage.

He appreciated the beneficial workshop which was a chance for regional countries to exchange tourism development experiences, policies and strategies. Besides, the participants would be introduced with methods of collecting and compiling data and doing respective surveys, especially using tourism statistics and TSA documents. He emphasized applicable TSA documents requiring a greater insight, cooperation and support from various relevant institutions.

At the workshop, under the chair of two UNWTO experts, Ms. Venessa Satur and Mr. Jim Fletcher, participants presented tourism statistics situation of their countries and shared experiences in collecting data and relevant contents such as: use of visa and entry declaration; Data collection of domestic tourism, inbound tourism, balance of payments.

UNWTO experts concluded that Thailand and Viet Nam are two countries capable of developing data system and implementing TSA. The experts also introduced about basic steps to implement TSA and made suggestion to develop statistics in regional countries.

Thanh Tam