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14 June 2010

Laos looking to lure more Japanese tourists

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The Lao National Tourism Administration (LNTA), in cooperation with the Asean-Japan Centre (AJC), has organised a quality service training workshop for those in the hospitality sector providing services to Japanese businesspeople and tourists, according to the Ventiane Times.

During the three-day workshop from June 9 to 11, tourism experts from AJC will share their experience with Lao tourism service providers regarding Japanese culture, tradition, lifestyle, social etiquette, and also tour guide techniques.

Official figures show the number of foreign tourists visiting Laos in 1990 was just 14,400. This increased to over 2 million in 2009, including almost 29,000 Japanese tourists.

In his opening remarks to the workshop, LNTA Vice Chairman Mr Soukaseum Bodhisane said the increase in Japanese visitors to Laos requires the tourism sector to improve the quality of services on offer.

“Our tourism sector must improve the quality of service to satisfy target markets, such as Japanese tourists,” Mr Soukaseum said.

Laos and Japan share close relations and the Lao government has declared visa exemptions for Japanese citizens visiting Laos.

This is third workshop on the topic organised in cooperation with AJC.

The AJC is an international organisation established in Tokyo in 1981 under an agreement between the governments of Asean member countries and Japan. Its full title is the Asean Promotion Centre on Trade, Investment and Tourism.

AJC Assistant Director Mr Fuchigami Joukei said since 2002, when Laos officially became a member of AJC, the centre’s tourism experts have conducted several cooperative activities to promote tourism in both Laos and Japan.



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