Sóc Trăng authorities are calling for investment in eco-tourism projects to serve local and foreign tourists aware of sustainable development.
Sóc Trăng’s tourism sector has made certain achievements in terms of infrastructure development, revenues, tourist arrivals and length of visitors’ stay.
The number of visitors to this Mekong Delta province grew from 500,000 in 2005 to 800,000 in 2010.
Tour sales increased 10% annually on average.
Tourism revenues in 2006 reached VND40 billion and the number surged to VND70 billion in 2010.
Over 908,000 tourists came to the province in 2011, generating total revenue of nearly VND80 billion for the tourism sector.
The respective figures last year were 955,000 (including 20,000 from abroad) and VND170.4 billion.
There were 170,582 hotel guests in the province, accounting for 154% of that year’s target.
Though the sector has gained steady growth, it has yet to fully tap its potential. Tourism products are not attractive enough, hindering the development of tourism.
Investment in quality
To attract more tourists, especially those from other countries, the provincial authorities have embarked on a plan designed to improve service quality such as building roads to tourist destinations, upgrading tourist facilities, re-arranging farm produce and specialties stores, coping with illegal soliciting at tourist sites and enhancing safety for tourists.
As of the end of 2012, there were 37 accommodation facilities, including one three-star hotel, 10 two-star hotels and 13 one-star hotels in the province.
Some new hotels and tourist sites have been put into operation such as Tân Huệ Viên and Công Lập Thành rest stops, and Minh Phương and Tín Hòa hotels.
More food, beverage and entertainment services have been launched to meet increasing demand.
In addition, Sóc Trăng is focusing on calling for investment in key eco-tourism sites.
Hồ Bê and Song Phụng eco-tourism sites are some of the major projects in the pipeline in the province.
The roles of the provincial tourism steering committee and tourism association are being strengthened to improve the quality of tourism promotion and management.
Through the provincial tourism association, businesses are encouraged to expand markets and open tours from Sóc Trăng to other parts of the country and to neighboring countries.
The provincial government has also set up a mechanism for forging ties with travel and service companies to improve service quality and create attractive tours so as to make tourists stay longer in Sóc Trăng.
As for manpower in the sector, many training courses have been held to create and develop human resources.
The province’s tourism cadres have also been sent to training courses to improve management and professional skills.
Sóc Trăng has a strong demand for investment in eco-tourism projects, and looks to open more tours to attract more local and foreign tourists.
These goals are expected to help Sóc Trăng earn more from the tourism industry, contributing to its budget revenue collection and making tourism an economic mainstay of the province.
Source: The Saigon Times