ASEAN, Japan, China and Korea applaud community’s tourism initiatives

Published on : Tuesday, January 21, 2014

ASEAN1The ASEAN community continues to remain as an attractive destination for both regional and international tourists; recording an increase of 14.51% and 9.9% arrivals respectively over 2012.

In 2013, 90.2 million tourists visited ASEAN, which was a 12% increase compared to 2012.

This was the statement made on Monday by YB Dato’ Seri Mohammed Nazri Abdul Aziz, Minister of Tourism and Culture, Malaysia, at the conclusion of the Meeting of the ASEAN
Tourism Ministers + China, Japan and Korea at the ASEAN Tourism Forum in Kuching,
Sarawak.

In his speech, YB Dato’ Seri Mohammed Nazri Abdul Aziz said that during the Seventeenth
Meeting of the ASEAN Tourism Ministers on January 19, 2014 in Kuching, Sarawak, in
conjunction with the ASEAN Tourism Forum 2014 (ATF 2014), we are pleased to confirm
that ASEAN continues to remain as an attractive destination for both regional and international tourists; We welcome the progress in implementing the ASEAN Tourism Strategic Plan (ATSP) 2011-2015, and pleased to announce that 75% of the measures for 2013 have been duly completed.

The Ministers commended the progress made in facilitating the free flow of services and
skilled labour within ASEAN through the implementation of the ASEAN Mutual Recognition
Arrangement (MRA) on tourism professionals.

We welcome the new training projects and activities undertaken in 2014 including development of the ASEAN Tourism Professional Registration System, Toolbox Development for Travel Agencies and Tour Operators, training of ASEAN Master Trainers and Master Assessors for Front Office, Food and Beverage Services and the pilot project for housekeeping under the MRA.

We welcome the progress made in developing comprehensive tourism standards for green hotel, homestay, spa services, public toilets, clean tourist cities and community-based tourism, and the certification process to enhance the quality of human resources, services and facilities in the region.

The Ministers also expressed their sympathy to the Government and People of the Philippines in the aftermath of the earthquake and typhoon Haiyan that hit the country in the last quarter of 2013. Towards this end, the Ministers endorsed the implementation of the ASEAN Tourism Framework in responding to climate change to ensure the sustainable development of tourism in the region.

Among others, the Ministers agreed to consider UNWTO’s Global Code of Ethics for Tourism
as a possible means to sustainable and responsible tourism development.

We applaud the progress made with ASEAN partners in jointly promoting and marketing
ASEAN tourism activities, amongst others, social media marketing of ASEAN tourism on
Sinaweibo website to tap the Chinese market. The Ministers also expressed their appreciation to the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) and Travel Channel for PATA Love Campaign which will promote ASEAN tourism destinations and tourism products through ASEAN Member States. The Ministers also noted that the ASEAN Tourism website has been further enhanced to promote multi-country packages.

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