Export Impact For Good

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Myanmar: Inclusive tourism development with focus on Kayah State and extension to Tanintharyi Region


    Myanmar’s tourism sector has a strong potential for growth. Visitor exports generated USD 2,3 mn (26.4% of total exports) in 2016, expected to grow further by 8.3% annually in the period 2017-2027. Nevertheless, the country’s annual increase in international visitor arrivals has slowed down. Six main destinations (Yangon, Bagan, Inle Lake, Kyaikhto, Mandalay, and Ngapali Beach) currently receive the majority of international visitors and are benefitting most from tourism revenues. Diversifying and widening Myanmar’s tourism offer is an opportunity for local providers of tourism products and services also in other states to increase their income in tourism and tourism-related value chains.

    This calls for additional efforts in diversifying Myanmar’s tourism offer as the tourism industry cannot rely much longer solely on the country’s main tourist attractions, which start to be well known and saturated. More focus has to be put on developing new destinations within the country and to attract repeated travelers.

    NTF IV Myanmar inclusive tourism builds on the results of “NTF III Myanmar - Inclusive Tourism focusing on Kayah state” by expanding tourism product development to one additional state and further consolidating the achieved results at national and at Kayah state level. The same successful value chain approach, from product and service development over association strengthening and destination branding to market linkages will be adopted. ITC will continue its close collaboration with CBI, who is implementing a parallel tourism project assisting tour operators and the national sector associations in export promotion.

    In Kayah state, the tourism products & services developed under NTF III will be further improved and extended to more villages in order to enhance the tourism experience with the view to attract new and longer-staying tourists. Moreover, the management capabilities of local counterparts will be strengthened so as to ensure long-term sustainability of the results achieved under NTF III. Kayah will become a best practice learning centre for other responsible tourism development players in the region.

    ITC will continue coach and mentor tourism and tourism related associations in Kayah to strengthen them and increase their understanding of what a tourism association should be and which services should be provided to the members.

    The project will develop one new tourism destination in another state with new responsible tourism products (cultural tourism tours, creative tourism activities, community-based tourism activities, etc.). Tourism service providers (incl. local communities, local guides, ground-handlers, hotels, restaurants) will be trained to increase the quality of services sold through tour operators and directly to individual tourists. A Training of Trainees (ToT) approach will be used in the development of new tourism products and services. A Public Private Dialogue Platform will be continued in Kayah state and established and facilitated in the new state to assure smooth collaboration among all stakeholders and concerted efforts for sustainable tourism development. The trainer cum councillor (TcC) approach to improve food quality in Kayah and in the new state will be reinforced and extended.

    On national level, ITC will continue to enhance the capacity to generate, disseminate and make use of tourism statistics. ITC will also proceed with its assistance of Destination Marketing and Branding with the Myanmar Tourism Marketing (MTM) and the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism. The Codes of Conducts for tourists, tour operators and CBT communities developed in a participatory approach under NTF III will be further refined and applied. NTF IV will continue working with the Union of Myanmar Travel Association (UMTA) and MTM and assist them with technical support for marketing and branding, events and B2Bs

    Business linkages will be facilitated and established both within Myanmar (e.g with the organization of study tours for Myanmar tour operators to experience the new developed products) and with the international tourism market (between Myanmar inbound tour operators and international outbound tour operators). ITC will focus on specific marketing activities (e.g.conferences, promotional events, B2Bs etc.) for the new products developed in Kayah and in the second state


    Under NTF IV, ITC will continue addressing the needs outlined in the Myanmar National Tourism Master Plan and in other government’s tourism policies (Responsible Tourism Policy, Community involvement in Tourism Policy) as well as in the National Export Strategy (NES) for the tourism sector, including:

    • Building the Image, Position and Brand of Tourism Myanmar
    • Developing Quality Products and Services
    • Strengthening the Institutional Environment
    • Building Human Capacity and Promote Services Quality.
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