Over 200 representatives of government and private sector met in Vientiane Capital to discuss ways to strengthen tourism industry as 2018 has been designated as Visit Laos Year.
The meeting was chaired by Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr Bosengkham Vongdara.
The participants also discussed preparation of a number of activities for Visit Laos Year 2018 in an effort to attract more foreign travellers.
Tourism is the fourth largest economic driver of the country following mining, manufacturing and electricity. Last year, 4.2 foreigners visited Laos generating US$724 million as incomes for the country, said Mr Bosengkham.
Last year witnessed a 10 percent year-on-year decrease in the number of foreign visit arrivals. In the first quarter of 2017, the number of foreign visitors was decreased by 9.8 percent as compared to the same period last year, according to Vice Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr Ounthouang Khaophanh.
At the meeting, President of the Lao Association of Travel Agents, Mr Somphong Daeviengxay proposed the government establishes a tour guides’ association to supervise professional practice by tour guides in the country.
Source: Lao News Agency