Speakers and Tours Announced for Mekong Tourism Forum

A combination of photos promoting Viet Nam tourism sites.
This year's forum is themed “Rebuild Tourism, Rebound with Resilience.” Photo credit: Courtesy of Mekong Tourism Forum

Twenty-five speakers from six Greater Mekong Subregion countries have been confirmed for the Mekong Tourism Forum 12–13 October in Quang Nam, central Viet Nam.

Forum organizers are ensuring that both private and public sector voices will be well represented. Panelists will make recommendations on three focus areas: social enterprises, new ways of connecting sustainable tourism suppliers and buyers, and technology.

Leading private sector panelists addressing those issues include Daniel Gelfer of Agoda, Willem Niemeijer of YAANA Ventures, Tean Ly of Seeva Capital, Jason Lusk of Clickable Impact, Mika Cui of JNE Group, Duangmala Phommavong of EXO Travel Lao, Mayur (Mac) Patel of OAG, Thuy Phuong Nguyen of Plan International/Travelife, and others.

From the public and third sector, there will be contributions from leaders and senior executives of the Asian Development Bank, the Pacific Asia Travel Association, and the ASEAN Tourism Association.

Government sector contributions will be led by Nguyen Van Hung, Minister of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Viet Nam. Senior representatives from ministries and national tourism offices from Cambodia, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Myanmar, and Thailand will also address the forum’s overarching theme of “Rebuild Tourism, Rebound with Resilience.”

As Quang Nam province is the host destination, on 13 October delegates will have the opportunity to join any of three local themed tours: Culture–a visit to two World Heritage sites: My Son Sanctuary and Hoi An ancient town; Nature—Cu Lao Cham Biosphere Reserve and Tra Que vegetable village; Green & Agritourism—the story of organic agriculture and the circular economy, using Tra Que vegetable village as an example.

The Mekong Tourism Forum will also host a sustainable tourism exhibit comprising 18 tables showcasing sustainable tourism, community-based tourism and local community products. The exhibit will run from 10 to 12 October. 

First held in 1996, the Mekong Tourism Forum is an annual government-led event dedicated to the tourism industry in the Greater Mekong Subregion. The event provides a cooperative platform for travel and tourism stakeholders to discuss regional tourism development, along with the marketing and promotion of travel to, from, and within the subregion. It presents an inclusive, interactive, and results-oriented opportunity to encourage public- and private-sector participation in promoting the subregion as a single destination. 

This year's forum will take place at the Hoiana Resort & Golf (Hoiana), on a beach setting just south of Hoi An UNESCO-listed heritage city. Da Nang international airport is 40 minutes from the conference venue.

Quang Nam and green tourism are the focus of Visit Vietnam Year 2022.