MINISTER of Primary Resources and Tourism Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Ali bin Haji Apong attended the 22nd ASEAN Tourism Ministers Meeting, 18th Plus Three Tourism Ministers Meeting and the 7th ASEAN-India Tourism Ministers Meeting from January 17-18, in Ha Long City, Vietnam, in conjunction with the ASEAN Tourism Forum 2019 (ATF 2019).
The meetings were chaired by Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Vietnam Nguyen Ngoc Thien and Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Ali, who served as Vice-Chairman at the 22nd ASEAN Tourism Ministers Meeting.
The meetings were preceded by the 49th Meeting of the ASEAN National Tourism Organisations and related meetings with dialogue partners from January 14-16.
Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT) Pengiran Haji Kamarudzaman bin Pengiran Haji Mohd Ishak and officials from the Tourism Development Department of the MPRT were also present.
During the 22nd ASEAN Tourism Ministers Meeting, the ministers noted that 129 million tourists visited ASEAN in 2018, an increase of 7.6 per cent from 2017. Intra-ASEAN travel continued to be the major share of tourists, making up 37.2 per cent of total international arrivals in 2017.
During the 18th ASEAN Plus Three (ASEAN, China, Japan, and the Republic of Korea) Tourism Ministers Meeting, the ministers acknowledged that in 2018, the ASEAN Plus Three region received 191.5 million international visitor arrivals.
During the 7th Asean-India Tourism Ministers Meeting, the ministers noted the strengthened tourism performance of ASEAN and India in 2018. The preliminary number showed there were 139.5 million tourist arrivals to ASEAN and India in 2018, an increase of 7.4 per cent as compared to the previous year.
During the ATF 2019, Brunei also informed the meetings of the newly revamped tourism branding of Brunei with tagline ‘Abode of Peace’, which symbolises a positive future for the next generation and reflects the identity of a peaceful nation. The new tourism promotional video was also presented.
A travel exhibition (TRAVEX) was also held from January 16-18 at Quang Ninh Exhibition of Planning and Expo Centre (QNEPEC) at Ha Long City, Quang Ninh Province, Vietnam. The exhibition was attended by 362 buyers and 640 exhibitors.