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September 18, 2019

Better infrastructure needed to bolster Myanmar tourism industry

The tourism industry has become one of the most important sectors in Myanmar over the past few years, with around 3.05 million of inbound tourists in 2014.
The country’s opening-up policy under the reform process is paving the way for better opportunities for the tourism industry, even as it faces the shortcomings of local infrastructure. Myanmar has abundant cultural legacies such as the Bagan Dynasty that reached its zenith about 800 years ago.
Pristine conditions of natural resorts can be seen across the country from north to south and east to west. But after years of being closed to the outside world, Myanmar’s tourism industry needs improvements to be able to compete with neighbouring countries.
Myanmar introduced an e-visa system on 1 September, and it was expanded for more countries. The system now covers 100 countries. However, the good system needs more efficient staff members to reach the goal.
Arrival of tourists to Myanmar has increased year by year. However, the country also faces hotel rates which are noticeably higher in major cities than in neighbouring countries. Roads, train and airlines also need better infrastructure to attract a larger number of tourists.
Foreign arrivals surpass the expected total each year as the number of tourists to Myanmar reached more than 2.04 million in 2013, compared with 1.06 million visitors in 2012.
The Ministry of Hotels and Tourism has targeted an increase in international tourist arrivals to nearly 7.5 million by 2020. To meet this number, the country will need a master plan that includes improving infrastructure, its institutions, better human resources and developing more tourist destinations.

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