Cambodia’s Tourism Ministry has released a white paper for capitalizing on the rapid growth in Chinese inbound tourism, with the aim of drawing and catering to roughly 2 million Chinese tourists per year by 2020, a local newspaper reported on Wednesday.
The tourism sector development guide, titled “China Ready for Cambodia Tourism,” includes a five-year strategy for increasing the share of Chinese tourists to the kingdom to about a third of the overall 7.5 million annual tourists projected by 2020.
Tourism Minister Thong Khon said at the white paper’s release on Monday that despite the rapid increase in the number of Chinese tourists visiting Cambodia – ranked second of all travellers in 2015 – the ministry’s focus would be on improving the quality of Cambodia’s tourism products through targeted marketing.
“Marketing Cambodia as a tourist destination in the Chinese market is still limited and tourism facilities are not meeting the expectations of Chinese tourists,” Khon was quoted by the Phnom Penh Post as saying.
Southeast Asia received close to 13 million Chinese tourists in 2014, with only 560,000 visiting Cambodia, while other neighboring countries like Thailand and Vietnam received 7.9 million and 1.6 million respectively, he added.
The white paper lists steps to be taken by tourism authorities to facilitate visits by Chinese tourists, such as providing and documents for visa processing, encouraging local use of the Chinese yuan currency, and ensuring that food and accommodation facilities are suited to Chinese tastes.
Chea Seng, manager of Hong Yi Travel Service, a travel company that caters to Chinese tourists, said the Chinese were big spenders, and enjoyed shopping and nightlife activities while travelling.
“They will spend money if we can create services for them,” he was quoted by the newspaper as saying. “And if they are happy, they will come back again.”
Photo by dalbera
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