Newly appointed Lao Minister of Information, Culture, and Tourism Mr. Kikeo Khaykhamphithoune, met with Trip.com Group CEO Ms. Jane Sun last Friday for discussion on ways the website may assist tourism in Laos.
World heritage sites such as Luang Prabang, Wat Phu, and the Plain of Jars illustrate the charm of Laos and demonstrate the importance of tourism to the national economy.
The Lao tourism sector has formalized arrangements with a growing number of foreign travel companies, and the nation now includes 15 international tourism ports. Meanwhile, tourism infrastructure is being upgraded, and online visa systems have made the entrance to Laos faster and more convenient.
During their talks, Ms. Jane Sun suggested that strengthening of resources and information between Laos and China, with an emphasis on sustainable and eco-tourism, would be mutually beneficial.
“The Chinese market is crucial to Lao tourism, and we welcome Trip.com Group to grow its presence in our local tourism industry,” said Kikeo Khaykhamphithoun, according to a report by Trip.com Group.
The Vientiane Times reported yesterday that more than 756,900 Chinese visitors came to Laos this year, an increase of about 26 percent over the same period in 2018, with the Vist Laos-China Year being hailed as a success by authorities.
Meanwhile, Ms. Jane Sun said she hopes to strengthen cooperation with Laos in the development of new products and the promotion of tourism.
The global visa service center of Trip.com Group has already formed an exclusive strategic partnership with Laos after the opening of a visa “green channel,” which will allow tourists from China to enjoy a streamlined visa application process.
Trip.com Group says that their statistics indicate visa applications to Laos via their website platform have risen by 80 percent compared to last year.
Trip.com Group and the Lao government intend to formalize a strategic agreement in the near future to make both countries more prominent international tourist destinations.