The number of foreign visitors to the Asia-Pacific region increased by 399% year-on-year in the first eight months of 2022, according to the the Asian Development Bank.
According to the Asian Economic Integration Report 2023 report the bank published this week, the pace of tourism recovery has accelerated significantly and could reach pre-Covid levels in 2024.
American tourists in Hoi An in central Vietnam in 2022. Photo by VnExpress/Dac Thanh
Data released by the General Statistics Office in December showed Vietnam received 3.66 million visitors last year, 23.3 times higher than in the previous year but only 20% of the 18 million it received in 2019, before the pandemic broke out.
The Vietnam National Administration of Tourism said the tourism sector targets eight million visitors this year.
The 2022 number of the region was only 10.3% of the 2019 figure.
ADB said the factors that will have a bearing in tourism recovery in Asia are people’s confidence in international travel, border reopening by various countries and their public health protocols.
The conflict between Russia and Ukraine also continues to pose a risk to the Asian tourism industry, which could lose a third of tourists from the former country, the bank said.
Another factor is the rise in fuel prices, meaning higher airfares and travel costs, which has somewhat dampened recovery in the Asia-Pacific, it said.
The report suggested that to accelerate recovery, economies in the Asia-Pacific need to promote cooperation, adopt policies to build resilience and sustainability in tourism and resolve pre-pandemic issues such as poor infrastructure.
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