Reasserting Right Tourism Position in Local Economic Structure

11:18:47 AM | 21/7/2023

Hung Yen province is speeding up the development of tourism products and attracting tourists in a bid to create breakthroughs and reassert the right position of tourism in the economic structure. Vietnam Business Forum has an interview with Mr. Pham Van Hieu, Deputy Director of the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Hung Yen province.

Pho Hien special national relic site

Could you please describe the current tourism picture of Hung Yen province?

Hung Yen is already very famous for the poem: "The first is the capital, the second is Pho Hien” with a lot of advantages for tourism development. Currently, the province has more than 1,802 historical and cultural relics, including three special national relics, 175 national relics, 264 provincial relics and six national treasures. The locality also has many popular traditional craft villages and more than 400 traditional festivals carrying the typical culture of the Northern Delta. Hung Yen is also home to many attractive specialties such as longan, vermicelli, Dong Tao chicken, rice cake and longan seed lotus tea. These are all valuable resources for tourism development.

Based on local potential tourism advantages, the province has focused on developing its peculiar tourism products: Cultural and spiritual tourism associated with Red River tours and road routes; traditional festival tourism; ecotourism, agritourism, community tourism and craft village tourism. Spiritual cultural tourism is featured with Hanoi - Da Hoa Temple tour, Da Trach Temple - Bat Trang Pottery Village tour and Pho Hien special national relic area. Traditional festival tourism is highlighted with Da Hoa - Da Trach relic complex associated with Chu Dong Tu - Tien Dung Festival; Thai Lac Pagoda with the Rain Praying Festival. Regarding eco-tourism, visitors can explore Canh orangery garden; and visit and camp in the Ecopark City. Joining the craft village tourism, visitors can visit production sites and manually select meaningful craft products such as medicinal herbs in Nghia Trai village and bamboo fishing tools in Thu Sy village.

How has Hung Yen tourism sector focused on innovating and improving the quality of domestic and international tourism promotion in recent years?

Under the Provincial Party Committee and the Provincial People's Committee, the tourism industry has made new progress in tourism communication, promotion and marketing. The Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism has actively fostered tourism promotion with many rich and diverse activities, making an important contribution to local tourism development.

The department has coordinated with other agencies and tourism companies to attend many tourism workshops, fairs and events to introduce and promote local tourism to domestic and international tourists. At the same time, the department has published tourism promotion publications with rich content and forms to introduce Hung Yen tourism, land and people. The tourism sector has also cooperated with central and local mass media agencies to create tourist experience videos and tourism reportages; and build a smart tourism portal and tourism website. Thus, Hung Yen province has attracted a large number of domestic and international tourists.

In addition to key tourism product development, the tourism sector of Hung Yen province has carried out consistent solutions to build Hung Yen into an attractive, safe and friendly destination for domestic and foreign tourists. Specifically, the province has introduced incentive mechanisms to woo investors into the tourism sector, especially for tourism infrastructure construction to create appealing destinations for tourists. It has concentrated on bolstering communications and cooperation with businesses, other provinces and cities to connect tours and routes to bring tourists to Hung Yen. The locality has synchronously and effectively executed Plan 54/KH-UBND dated May 9, 2018 of the Provincial People's Committee on Hung Yen tourism development to 2025 and further to 2030; Hung Yen tourism communication and promotion project in 2021-2025 and Hung Yen tourism development master plan to 2025, with a vision to 2030.

In particular, in the coming time, Hung Yen province will build a heritage road that links Hanoi with Pho Hien and carry out the Project "Building and restoring ancient Pho Hien" on a natural area of  1,708.91 ha.

Besides good achievements, looking at the current tourism development, what other issues should be addressed, sir?

Although Hung Yen tourism has achieved positive results, there are still some existing difficulties and limitations. For example, tourism development achievements are still modest relative to the region and the country. Tourist arrivals, especially foreigners, are not so many. The share of tourists staying overnight is low, the length of their stay is short and their spending is limited, due to some reasons as follows:

- The starting point of Hung Yen tourism is low, both in terms of facilities and public awareness of tourism development. Tourism infrastructure and other technical facilities are inadequate, of low quality. The province is yet to create high-quality tourism products.

- Tourism resources are not really attractive to attract big local and external businesses to invest in tourism development. Tourism products are mainly based on available resources, with little investment in research and construction for innovative ones.

- Investment resources for tourism are still very small compared to actual needs. Local resources are not enough to afford infrastructure investment in tourist zones, attractions and facilities. Meanwhile, the province lacks powerful investors, especially strategic ones, to carry out major tourism infrastructure projects to make transformational changes in tourism development.

With the leadership and direction of the Provincial Party Committee, the Provincial People’s Council and the Provincial People's Committee, the participation of all levels and branches of authorities and localities along with the active support of the people, the tourism industry of Hung Yen will really transform when strengths are clearly identified, opportunities are promptly captured, and key solutions are adopted and carried out to make major breakthrough development, affirm the right position of tourism in the province's economic structure and contribute positively in the tourism development of the country.

Thank you very much!

ByTran Trang, Vietnam Business Forum