Southeast Asia Sustainable
Tourism Hub

With Southeast Asia’s tourism industry still reeling from the impact of COVID-19, ADB is increasing its support for investments, capacity development, and knowledge to accelerate an inclusive and sustainable recovery.

Rawai Naiharn Beach Phuket Thailand turquoise waters by iStock/Elias
Reviving Travel, Sustainably

The unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic reversed decades of robust tourism growth in Southeast Asia, causing widespread business closures and millions of job losses. While the pause in travel and tourism has brought economic hardship and isolation to many communities, it also offers a unique opportunity for industry stakeholders to address the structural issues undermining sustainability in the region.

What We Do

The Southeast Asia Sustainable Tourism Hub is anchored in ADB’s Southeast Asia Department, Urban Development and Water Division. It brings together diverse expertise from within and outside of ADB to help clients develop and finance innovative tourism projects, build destination management capacity, and provide knowledge solutions that align with ADB Strategy 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals. Our regional perspective, strong country presence, and partnerships enable us to deliver quality development solutions for Southeast Asia’s tourism industry. 

what we do

Operations

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The technical assistance facility will help countries in Southeast Asia prepare sustainable tourism projects and catalyze financing to support them. It supports regional priorities to revive tourism, develop green and resilient urban and transport infrastructure in secondary cities, accelerate inclusive digital transformations, and mobilize domestic resources.

A tourist inside the Tien Son cave, Son Trach commune, Bo Trach District, Quang Binh province in Viet Nam.

The project is financing climate-resilient roads, water transport infrastructure, urban infrastructure, and capacity development needed to boost and better manage tourism in Cambodia’s coastal areas, Lao PDR’s Champasak, Luang Prabang, and Vientiane Provinces, and several secondary towns in Viet Nam.

Preah Vhear temple

The Community-Based Tourism COVID-19 Recovery Project will help communities in Preah Vihear and Takeo provinces generate local jobs and income by improving tourism services infrastructure, enhancing visitor experiences, and strengthening tourism supply chain linkages.

News and Events

Divers cleaning trash from coral reefs in Palawan.

The islands need to determine their capacity limits for tourism to reduce pressure on marine ecosystems.

People exploring the Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon.

Industry now in a flux as stakeholders try to balance reviving the sector while trying to avoid pitfalls of mass tourism.

People mill around a park in Bangkok.

Staged opening of markets, phased restoration of routes and capacity, and “consumer misperception” that traveling to the region is complex are curbing growth.

Recent Publications

COVID-19 and the Future of Tourism in Asia and the Pacific cover photo

This report outlines key trends in the tourism sector in the region before the outbreak and during the pandemic from early 2020 to the end of 2021 and recommends how governments can foster recovery in the sector.

Sustainable Tourism After COVID-19: Insights and Recommendations for Asia and the Pacific cover

This publication examines tourism in Asia and the Pacific and how to reset the sector to contribute more effectively to the Sustainable Development Goals.

Carrying Capacity Assessment for Tourism in Coron and El Nido: A Step toward Sustainable Management of Marine Ecosystems

This brief provides a better understanding of the approaches and experiences in conducting carrying capacity assessments at key coral reef ecotourism sites in Coron and El Nido.