Tourist no-go zones unchanged: ministry

Wai Linn Aung

The list of no-go zones for foreigners and tourists will remain unchanged, according to the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism.

The Commander-in-Chief's Office and the military-controlled Ministry of Home Affairs sent a directive to the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism in December last year about the restricted areas where foreigners' safety cannot be guaranteed.

“The list remains the same. We cannot comment when it will be lifted. I think it will take time,” said Myint Htwe, a senior official from the tourism ministry.

The ministry in December instructed official tour companies not to seek permission for their travel packages in the restricted areas and cancel any travel packages.

Areas of Kachin, Kayin, Kayah, Shan, Chin, Rakhine, Sagaing, Tanintharyi, Bago, Yangon and Mandalay are restricted.

The country has welcomed more than 1.9 million foreign visitors since April, a significant decline compared with last year, according to a national planning report.

But the report said the tourism sector income was increasing year on year, bringing in US$905 million since April.

Yangon, Taunggyi, Mandalay and Bagan received the largest number of foreign tourists with Loikaw and Nay Pyi Taw receiving the fewest, according to the report.

Translated by TTW