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Dear Mekong Tourism Stakeholder,

Registration for the 2019 Mekong Tourism Forum is now open!  

Over the past eight months, the Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office has been working with the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the Yunnan Department of Culture and Tourism to organize the upcoming MTF 2019. 

Hosted in Dali and Xizhou in beautiful Yunnan from May 28-29, 2019, this year's Mekong Tourism Forum again innovative with a new concept to drive inclusive tourism and to promote sustainability. Please register early to secure your spot at the unique event.  For more information, please download the MTF 2019 Program Summary, read the press release, and visit Mekong Tourism Forum.

Finally, we would like to express our deep sadness following the horrible bombings  and terrible acts of violence in Sri Lanka last Easter weekend. We stand with our friends in the travel, tourism, and hospitality industry and the wonderful people of Sri Lanka, and wish them well in the difficult days and weeks ahead. 

Please enjoy this e-newsletter and share with your friends, partners, and colleagues.

Kind regards,

Jens Thraenhart
Executive Director
Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO)

Impressions from the ASEAN Gastronomy Forum, 9-10 April 2019, Bangkok - Thailand

The Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office was invited to contribute to this exciting forum, hosted by the Ministry of Tourism and Sports of Thailand. We firmly believe in the potential food tourism has to preserve cultural heritage and inspire visitors to experience the GMS.
Upcoming Event
Registrations for this year’s MTF are once again free of charge for travel and tourism professionals, courtesy of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of China and the Yunnan Provincial Government. In order to secure one of the coveted places at the 2019 Mekong Tourism Forum, delegates are asked to follow the online registration process. 
Featured Mekong Tourism Campaign
Remember to share your experiences on your own social media in video format of 60 seconds or less by tagging with #MekongMinis. Be part of promoting the Mekong Region in a collaborative way, and get a chance to win exciting prizes. For any organization, please contact us to learn how you can participate and increase exposure for your business.
Featured shared experiences from MekongMoments.com
Share your experiences in the Mekong Region on your own social media  (Instagram, Twitter, YouTube), and tag with #MekongMoments #<country> #<business>.  Visit MekongMoments.info to learn how to list your business for free.
Featured Stories

VIETNAM’S Q1 TRAVEL GROWS 7%

International visitor arrivals to Vietnam for the first quarter of the year improved 7% to reach 4,500,114 visits.

Key takeaways from the first quarter lead off with Vietnam powering ahead on the back of substantial increases in Asian markets that supplied 3,390,392 visits up 7.5% in the first quarter.

ANCIENT TOWN WOWS VISITORS WITH DIGITISED PUBLIC RESTROOMS

In a matter of seconds, Qian Yafen can easily locate the nearest vacant toilet on her cellphone. “I downloaded an app, clicked ‘find a restroom,’ and then these just came up with pictures of nearby public restrooms, numbers of available toilets as well as maps showing how I could get there,” Qian said.

MYANMAR, CHINA RAISE EFFORTS TO DEVELOP TOURISM INDUSTRIES

Myanmar and China are taking big steps to develop each other`s tourism industries.

China Eastern Airlines yesterday launched new flights and will deploy a Boeing 737-800 aircraft with a seating capacity of 184 for the new service. This will operate from Yangon International Airport three times a week on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, starting April 2.

Recent Additions to the Mekong Tourism e-Library
2018 Experience Mekong Showcases – Local Alike

Local Alike was found in 2013, by the two young and active co-founders, Somsak Boonkam “Pai” and Surachana Pakawaleethorn “Noon”. Pai is acting as the CEO of the enterprise. Local Alike is established in order to address three common problems to local communities namely 1) cultural fading 2) traditional skills and trade loss and 3) problem of migration. 

Download here
Domestic Tourism Importance and Economic Impact

Using the World Travel & Tourism Council’s (WTTC) annual economic impact data, this position paper assesses the importance of domestic travel to 185 countries, considers the trends driving this phenomenon and provides policy recommendations for the continued growth of domestic travel in the global economy. While countries often tend to focus on international tourism due to the revenue earned through exports, domestic tourism remains the leading form of tourism, representing 73% of the total global tourism spending in 2017.

Download here
Featured Experience Mekong Collection Member
Happy + Co farm sells delicious organic fruits and vegetables in Siem Reap. This farm picks and delivers on the same day. Therefore, they guarantee freshness and food safety to the customers. The products from this farm are delivered to many restaurants and hotels without plastic packing. If you are interested in their products, you can order on the website and they will contact you later to deliver the products on next day.
The Experience Mekong Collection (EMC) curates small businesses that focus on sustainable and responsible practices to create a unique experiences for guests. Anybody can nominate businesses to be included in the Experience Mekong Collection, and an advisory board of tourism experts vets nominations for integrity and relevance. In partnership with Mahidol University, each year, one business per country (six in total) is selected to be one of the Experience Mekong Collection Showcases, with case studies to highlighting the nature and innovation of the business. Nominate your favorite small responsible business today for inclusion in the Experience Mekong Collection!
Visit ExperienceMekong.org to see all current EMC members.
Featured Videos
Dali: Seat of a Lost Empire (Yunnan: The China You Never Knew, episode 4)
Mekong Minis 2018 winning video, Industry Choice Viet Nam by Dominic Doan from the USA (@dominic.firelitfilms)
To see our new media page with our latest press releases here
FOLLOW US ON SOCIAL MEDIA
MTCO is active on various social media platforms under the universal handle @TourismMekong. Please
Tag with #MekongMoments #TourismMekong and follow us:
The Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office is a collaborative effort between the governments of Cambodia, China, Lao PRD, Myanmar, Thailand, and Viet Nam to promote the Greater Mekong Subregion as a single tourism destination.
Copyright © 2019 Mekong Tourism, All rights reserved.


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