The impact of the pandemic on the Cambodian economy lingering, but with the control of the pandemic, Cambodia has gradually resumed work, and resuming the economy is the current top priority.
As a tourism country in Southeast Asia, Cambodia has also been hit severely. The Asian Development Bank estimates that in the worst case, Cambodia ’s tourism revenue may decrease by 856.5 million US dollars, equivalent to 3.5% of the country ’s GDP.
Tourism is a pillar industry in Cambodia. In order to minimize economic losses, Cambodia has started to revitalize the tourism market by a plenty of methods.
1. Stimulate domestic tourism consumption
Cambodia ’s tourism industry has long been supported by foreign tourists, but even if the pandemic is vanished, the global economy will require a certain recovery period. International tourists will not grow rapidly. Industry insiders estimate that the Cambodian tourism market fully recover to its previous condition, it may takes several years, therefore, the consumption demand of local tourists is crucial during the recovery period.
With the improvement of the domestic epidemic situation and effective control, the tourism activities of Cambodian locals have gradually increased. The director of the Kampot Province Tourism Bureau Soy Sinol said on May 8 that within a week, Kampot Province received nearly 26,000 passengers Tourists are gradually recovering, even approaching the normal condition. Even in the case of continued decline of international tourists in mid-March, the decline of domestic tourists is not obvious.
Local tourism demand is recovering faster, and the tourist markets popular with local tourists, such as Kampot, Sihanoukville, Kep and Koh Kong, will recover gradually.
2.Implementation of the "Sustainable Landscape and Ecotourism" project to promote diversification of the tourism market
Cambodia has always been committed to changing the over-single model of domestic tourism and constantly developing new tourist destinations and tourism projects. In addition to maintaining key tourist facilities in Siem Reap and other places during the pandemic, other provinces are also continuing to develop new projects.
At present, the Ministry of Tourism is formulating the "General Tourism Development Plan of Kep Province", which plans to make this southern coastal province a top tourist resort in Cambodia, improve the quality of existing tourism products, innovate more tourism products, and promote the tourism market diversification.
In addition, the "Northeast Tourism Overall Development Plan" is expected to be completed by August, aiming to build the Northeast into Cambodia's largest eco-tourism destination. Mondulkiri Province has natural waterfalls, nature reserves, indigenous cultural areas, forest seas and other characteristic tourism resources, and is a relatively prominent tourist destination in the region. Minister of Tourism Thong Khon said that Mondulkiri Province and the entire northeast region are the main eco-tourism destinations in Cambodia, attracting a large number of tourists every year, and the huge potential for tourism development. In the context of promoting the comprehensive development of the tourism industry, the region is expected to jointly develop ecotourism with Kep, Koh Kong and other places.
From 2020 to 2025, Cambodia will also implement the "Sustainable Landscape and Ecotourism" project in seven provinces around Tonle Sap Lake and the Cardamom Mountains. Under the premise of protecting the environment, tap more sustainable landscapes and ecotourism The potential to promote ecotourism and make Cambodia tourism more diverse.
3.ASEAN country work together to resume tourism
ASEAN covers many key tourist countries, and the pandemic has had a huge impact on ASEAN, especially Southeast Asian tourism. At the end of April, the ASEAN Minister of Tourism (M-ATM) in COVID-19 Special Meeting approved the "ASEAN Minister of Tourism Joint Statement on Strengthening Cooperation to Revitalize Tourism".
In order to promote the recovery and development of tourism in the ASEAN region, the tourism ministers of the ten ASEAN member countries supported the formulation and implementation of the crisis recovery plan after the pandemic, and worked hard to carry out joint tourism promotion and marketing, aiming to promote the development of ASEAN as a tourist destination.
4.Improve the quality of tourism services and prepare for receiving international tourists after the outbreak
Although the global epidemic situation has not been fully controlled, Cambodia has achieved good results in the fight against the epidemic. In addition, China, Japan, South Korea and other major investment countries and tourist source countries have gradually resumed work. In the next 4 to 5 months, foreign tourists visiting Cambodia will increase by 2 to 3 times. Therefore, Cambodia has prepare for the reception of international tourists.
In terms of aviation, Cambodia ’s international flights have begun to restart since May, including Cambodia ’s Angkor Air, China Airlines and Evergreen Airlines. Other major international airlines such as Qatar Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, Thai Airways and Emirates also plan to resume flights to Cambodia in June and July. After the flight resumes, the number of people entering Cambodia will increase substantially, and tourists will visit Cambodia gradually .
The Ministry of Tourism of Cambodia also plans to introduce new service guidance standards for tourism-related enterprises (such as hotels, restaurants and resorts), improve the quality of health services in the country's tourism industry, and rectify the service market to attract more tourists.