Myanmar prepares for tourism boom

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Myanmar is set to stage the country’s first tourism conference, organised by the Myanmar Tourism Federation and Sphere Conferences of Singapore, over three days in February in Yangon as part of the government’s Tourism Master Plan.

The objective of the Myanmar Hospitality & Tourism Conference 2013 from  February 26-28, 2013 is to provide background and perspective for potential hotel investors while positioning the country as a player with a big future in ASEAN tourism, according to Bangkok-based tourism magazine TTR Weekly.

Most of the big inbound tour operators based in Bangkok maintained offices and joint ventures during the decades of military junta rule in Myanmar, giving them a substantial lead over tour operators in Singapore or Hong Kong who opted to wait for sanctions to lift, the magazine said.

However, it remains to be seen if they will now expand their influence after years of absorbing losses as sanctions held at bay lucrative travel contracts.

Singapore is amongst the biggest sources of foreign investment interest in Myanmar, with teams from the Singapore Business Federation (SBF) making three exploratory visits in 2012.

In November 2012, a delegation made a five-day tour, examining business opportunities in financial services, oil and gas, agriculture, tourism and telecommunications. The SBF said Myanmar’s new foreign direct investment law would encourage more Singaporean firms to seek business opportunities.

1 million visitors

Myanmar in 2012 broke the 1-million-tourist mark, up from 816,000 in 2011. According to Htay Aung, Ministry of Hotels and Tourism, more than 1 million tourists arrived in the country by the end of December, with 400,000 entering the country from border gateways.

Most of the country’s international visitors come on business trips to the country’s commercial capital Yangon. Yangon International Airport has been receiving an average of 2,300 visitors daily, according to the minister.

Recent data shows that there are around 448 hotels offering a total of 19,014 rooms in the major tourist destinations such as Naypyitaw, Yangon, Mandalay, Bagan, Taunggyi and Inle Lake.

“We need to upgrade service standards, transportation and also upgrade existing hotels and tourist sites including opening new tourist sites,” the ministry said.

As part of the plans, the country is planning a new international airport near Yangon, and Yangon is allowing investors to convert apartment to hotels, adding more than 500 rooms this year.

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

Myanmar is set to stage the country’s first tourism conference, organised by the Myanmar Tourism Federation and Sphere Conferences of Singapore, over three days in February in Yangon as part of the government’s Tourism Master Plan.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Myanmar is set to stage the country’s first tourism conference, organised by the Myanmar Tourism Federation and Sphere Conferences of Singapore, over three days in February in Yangon as part of the government’s Tourism Master Plan.

The objective of the Myanmar Hospitality & Tourism Conference 2013 from  February 26-28, 2013 is to provide background and perspective for potential hotel investors while positioning the country as a player with a big future in ASEAN tourism, according to Bangkok-based tourism magazine TTR Weekly.

Most of the big inbound tour operators based in Bangkok maintained offices and joint ventures during the decades of military junta rule in Myanmar, giving them a substantial lead over tour operators in Singapore or Hong Kong who opted to wait for sanctions to lift, the magazine said.

However, it remains to be seen if they will now expand their influence after years of absorbing losses as sanctions held at bay lucrative travel contracts.

Singapore is amongst the biggest sources of foreign investment interest in Myanmar, with teams from the Singapore Business Federation (SBF) making three exploratory visits in 2012.

In November 2012, a delegation made a five-day tour, examining business opportunities in financial services, oil and gas, agriculture, tourism and telecommunications. The SBF said Myanmar’s new foreign direct investment law would encourage more Singaporean firms to seek business opportunities.

1 million visitors

Myanmar in 2012 broke the 1-million-tourist mark, up from 816,000 in 2011. According to Htay Aung, Ministry of Hotels and Tourism, more than 1 million tourists arrived in the country by the end of December, with 400,000 entering the country from border gateways.

Most of the country’s international visitors come on business trips to the country’s commercial capital Yangon. Yangon International Airport has been receiving an average of 2,300 visitors daily, according to the minister.

Recent data shows that there are around 448 hotels offering a total of 19,014 rooms in the major tourist destinations such as Naypyitaw, Yangon, Mandalay, Bagan, Taunggyi and Inle Lake.

“We need to upgrade service standards, transportation and also upgrade existing hotels and tourist sites including opening new tourist sites,” the ministry said.

As part of the plans, the country is planning a new international airport near Yangon, and Yangon is allowing investors to convert apartment to hotels, adding more than 500 rooms this year.

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