A modest, gradual upshift in tourism metrics is expected for Siem Reap after the Ministry of Tourism announces the implementation of a crucial 15-year road map for the provincial industry, at a virtual ceremony planned for this week.
Scheduled for October 20, the launch ceremony for the 2021-2035 Siem Reap provincial tourism development master plan will be presided over by Minister of Economy and Finance Aun Pornmoniroth, the tourism ministry said.
The plan was approved by the government on March 30.
On April 1, the tourism ministry said that through the strategies put forth by this and supplementary instruments, Siem Reap could attract 10.9 million domestic tourists by 2023 and 7.5 million international tourists by 2025, creating 940,000 jobs and generating an additional $6 billion in revenue for the province’s economy.
The master plan prescribes seven primary strategic areas for quality tourism development in the province and surrounding regions through 2035 – prioritisation of tourist sites; new tourism products; promotion; quality and sustainability; environmental management; infrastructure and connectivity; and administration.
In addition, the Ministry of Health on October 16 issued Notification No 453 on revised health rules, quarantine requirements and other travel conditions.
General fully-vaccinated inbound passengers will now undergo quarantine for seven days, whereas investors, technical experts, among others – with a guarantor or invitation letter – are required to isolate for just three days.
Pacific Asia Travel Association Cambodia chapter chairman Thourn Sinan told The Post on October 17 that the plan, coupled with the reductions in quarantine periods would bring welcome relief from the devastation inflicted by the Covid-19 crisis over the course of nearly two years.
Covid has upended multiple industries, draining precious revenue away from local economies. But as the Kingdom gears up for a wider reopening, concerns are mounting over travel safety and economic vitality, he said.
“Bringing in foreign tourists will require the authorities to put some more incentives and coordination strategies in place,” Sinan said.
From January-July, Cambodia received 112,544 international visitors, marking a steep decline of 90.6 per cent year-on-year, according to the tourism ministry.