The organisation of the APEC High Level Policy Dialogue on Sustainable Tourism in Ha Long city is an excellent opportunity for Vietnam in general and Quang Ninh province in particular, to seek and deepen relations with APEC member economies and other important foreign partners.
Chairman of the northeast province's People’s Committee Nguyen Duc Long made the remark at the opening ceremony of the dialogue on June 19.
He said as host of the National Tourism Year in 2018 and the ASEAN Tourism Forum in 2019, Quang Ninh province will do its utmost to successfully organise the events.
The Chairman welcomes the tourist community from APEC member economies to Quang Ninh – a land of potential and a destination for tourists around the world.
Quang Ninh has a special geopolitical and economical position with the world natural heritage site of Ha Long Bay as well as more than 600 natural landscapes and historical relic sites.
In the process of development, Quang Ninh has to develop the mining industry and at the same time protect the environment, especially at the Ha Long Bay, Long said.
He went on to say that local authorities have clearly defined challenges that need to address such as the high urbanisation rate and the sustainable development in the context of climate change and rising sea level.
To obtain sustainable development, Quang Ninh has implemented breakthrough strategies such infrastructure improvement, institutional reform, and human resources training in addition to changing growth models and restructuring the economy, he said.
Under the Overall Plan for Tourism Development in Quang Ninh to 2020 and Vision to 2030, Quang Ninh strives to become an international tourism centre and a leading tourism destination in Vietnam with modern infrastructure and diverse, high quality and competitive tourism products.
By 2020, Quang Ninh aims to welcome 15-16 million tourists, including seven million foreigners, and rake in VND30-40 trillion (US$1.3-1.7 billion) in revenue. The tourism sector is expected to contribute 14-15% to the gross regional domestic product (GRDP).
In 2016, Quang Ninh welcomes 8.3 million tourist arrivals, a year-on-year increase of seven percent, and earned over 13 trillion VND (571 million USD) in revenue, up 23 percent, according to the Quang Ninh Department of Tourism.
Particularly, Ha Long welcomed 6.3 million tourists and grossed 7.7 trillion VND (over 338 million USD) in revenue, representing respective increases of 14 percent and 65 percent from the previous year. About 2.7 million of the visitors were foreigners, a year-on-year growth of 16 percent.