Myanmar TBurma T
MYANMAR' s tourism figures are wrong
So what is a touristy and why is that important? This question has been raised in the rice sector following the government's announcements that Myanmar has received more than 3 million visitors in 2014. Growing numbers of visitors have pushed up the price of hotels and guided tours, while internal air fares have remained high compared to the area.
Analysts are warning that Myanmar has gained a bad price-performance ratio and is deterring prospective new attendees when the "opening gloss" is waning. "Burma is quite pricey and still willing to afford it, but that could be changing in two, three or four years," said Nicole Haeusler, who works on assignment from the Myanmar Tourist Board for the MYG.
However, so far there have been no appeals for restraint, with the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism declaring a goal of 4.5 million to 5 million visits by 2015. Myanmar's tourist guides have been obsessing about getting higher and higher arrivals for many years. Former government officials called on the business community to disregard the realities of the tourist blackout and investment in advertising and infrastructures to achieve the magic 1-million-point.
Why are tourist destinations important to the governmen? Penalties and the tourist boxcott advertising give them an additional "contextual relevance" for Myanmar, Mr Turnell said, but the " most important " ones are commercial ones. "Not only does the tourist industry generate revenue, but also currency. It was also reflected in the 2013-2020 Master Plan for Turism, which attracted too much attention at the World Economy Forum in June 2012.
Whilst the authors of the paper pointed out that the average expected increase of 2.2 million in 2015 and 5 million in 2020 is most likely due to local experiences, the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism stressed the need for high growth: 3rd 09 million multinational attendees in 2015 and 7.
That would see revenues in the travel sector rise from US$534 million in 2012 to $10. 18 billion in 2020, by then the economy could contain 1. How did the department cross the 3 million mark so quickly? The Pacific Asia Travel Association reports that Myanmar's travel destinations increased dramatically in 2013, when the number of Myanmar's borders from India, Bangladesh and Laos was counting alongside those from China and Thailand.
That means that the number of people arriving at borders, which for a whole ten years ranged between 400,000 and 500,000 per year, rose to 1.144 million in 2013. In total, the number of people arriving rose to around 2 million. The fact is, however, that Myanmar did not welcome more than 3 million foreign visitors last year - at least by most global norms.
Nearly two third of the 3 million picture - about 1. 9 million visitor - were full-time tourist from Thailand, China, India, Laos and Bangladesh, according to PATA. While the World Tourism Organisation classifies tourism as those staying in the state for at least 24 hrs, PATA only registers guests for the night the Department of Tourism considers all these arrives as tourism, albeit only 48.
2% of those who crossed Yangon International Airport in 2014 did so on a tourism visas. The best indicator of real tourism arrival is the sale of tickets at Shwedagon Pagoda, which rose from 400,852 in 2013 to 505,351 - an 26% gain that reflects the 22% and 24% increases in the number of people arriving at Inle Lake.
That relatively slowgrowing in flight arrivals last year is suggesting that attaining 4. 5 million, even through chunks in non-tourists, could be a main route. With the liberalization of frontier policies - international travellers can now arrive at four Thai frontier crossing points and travel on to other parts of Myanmar - they are unlikely to expand quickly enough to achieve a total increase of 50 percent.
Mario Hardy, PATA General Manager, said last weeks that the goal "may not be achievable", but that Myanmar, as still anticipated, will see a sharp increase of about 20% among accommodation guests, which will increase to 1.37 million. However, the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism head U Myo Win Nyunt said it could be achieved by modernising the airport, opening new frontier doors and encouraging new goals, such as the three Pyu towns, which were included on UNESCO's World Heritage List in June.
"We' ve got more than 40,000 rooms all over the nation and new ones will be opened this year, so there will be no shortages due to the increasing number of tourists and room rates will not rise," he said. Myanmar's current state of affairs is another source of insecurity, especially in view of the parliamentary elections planned for the beginning of the high tourism seasons.
Aung Aung San Suu Kyi's tourist ban has hindered the tourist trade for most of two centuries, and turmoil in the politics could curb the country's population. ýrecommend the state. Improvements at the airport, the expansion of on-line visas as well as the commercialisation of new routes would also boost economic upswing. This urge for fast growing has disguised information about who is actually visiting Myanmar - information needed by both the governments and the residential market to satisfy current and prospective service demands, according to MEPs.
Mrs Haeusler said people should be divided into recreational, long-term and short-term shops and frontier people. "We will have to build more Yangon and Mandalay hotel complexes in the near distant past, or rather vacation homes for larger groups," she said. It also asked for a revision of the yearly objective and why the best choice was to accept high-growth travel, apparently disregarding the master plan for it.
In the coming years, do we want to provide more quantities of tourist numbers or more services in Myanmar? This has also pushed up the price, what Mrs. Haeusler called "gambling," which Myanmar could take a year or two - "but then they will not.
"And if Myanmar doesn't offer the same prices as its neighboring nations, but also rivals like Egypt - cultural, marine - and Mexico - cultural, beautiful sandy areas.... they may have many difficulties in withstanding global competition," she said. The pace - or absence of it - at which infrastructures and utilities can be introduced will also dampen economic expansion.
Mr Hardy of PATA said that infrastructural needs are not "being met quickly enough to satisfy demand", while tourist companies have difficulties in finding personnel with the necessary capabilities. It also insisted on reticence and that the advantages of the tourist industry be disseminated throughout the whole territory and not just in a few places.