4.5m tourists expected this year

World Tourism Day Event held in MICC 2 at Nay Pyi Taw on 30th September.

Tourist arrivals are expected to exceed 4.5 million this year despite recent disasters, Vice-President Nyan Tun said in his opening address at the World Tourism Day event held at the MICC-2 in Nay Pyi Taw.

Last year, 3.08 million tourists arrived, generating US$1.5 billion or 30 per cent of the service-sector income. Travel and tourism was the world's fourth largest industry after oil, chemical products and food, he said.

The vice-president said Myanmar should continue relaxing visa restrictions by implementing e-visas and visas on arrival. New tourism opportunities were needed for the country to maintain its position as an emerging destination, he added.

On July 28, Myanmar could sign a memorandum of understanding to establish an entry visa-exemption for tourists arriving via Thailand and international airports.

In 2014, three Pyu cities, Hanlin, Beikthano and Sri Ksetra were placed on the UN cultural agency Unesco World Heritage List.

The vice-president called for tourism promotion in Mon and Kayin states and sustainable, eco-tourism in Chin and Rakhine states and Tanintharyi Region.