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August 1, 2007

Land-locked Laos expects 1.3 million tourists this year
Bangkok - Land-locked Laos expects to attract at least 1.3 million tourists this year, earning the communist country an estimated 190 million dollars in foreign exchange, Thai media reports said Wednesday. Last year Laos recorded 1.2 million tourist arrivals and 173 million dollars in revenues, making the sector the country's second largest foreign exchange earner after mining, the Bangkok Post reported.

"Tourism will be the number one contributor in the future as there are many projects being developed at the moment," Vang Rattanavong, vice chairman of the Lao National Tourism Administration told the English-language daily.

Laos, which has been promoting eco-tourism to appeal to the European market, has set a target of 2 million arrivals by 2010 generating revenues of 290 million for the country, currently ranked among the world's poorest nations. Bangkok Post


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