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Vietnam holds Asia-Europe tourism forum


September 14, 2008

Vietnam holds Asia-Europe tourism forum
Sustainability was the major topic at an Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) forum on tourism development opened in Ho Chi Minh City on September 11, reported Vietnam News Agency.

The event drew a 250-strong crowd who are members of the ASEM diplomatic corps in Hanoi, senior officials in charge of tourism from the member countries and executives of the domestic hospitality industry.

Highlighting conservation of cultural heritages and identities, eco-environment protection, tourism contributions to rural development and poverty reduction as long-term measures for sustainable growth in the two continents, the forum made a full commitment to ASEM ties in tourism while calling for stronger cooperation and assistance from member countries.

The World Tourism Organisation reported that Asia and Europe welcomed 828.7 million foreign arrivals in 2007, accounting for over 92 percent of the world's total. European countries made up 53.5 percent of the world’s total with 480 million arrivals.

The Asian-Pacific region recorded the highest growth rate in the number of foreign arrivals at 10 percent against the world average of 4 percent. The rate in Vietnam reached over 17 percent.

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