Myanmar Comes Of Age

Tourism infrastructure under development – and new ideas for TOs and TAs

The past year has been an historical one for Myanmar with major infrastructure improvements. We asked HE Mr Ohn Maung, Union Minister for Hotels and Tourism of Myanmar what have been the key elements of this evolution.

A brand new domestic airport and a new terminal at the international airport in Yangon have been opened. Across the country, tourists can enjoy reliable, fast and cheap mobile internet thanks to huge improvement in the infrastructure and I do think the mobile internet in Myanmar is amongst the best in SE Asia. More hotels have been opened nationwide, meaning better service and lower rates – and a better choice for tourists. Hundreds or tourists guides and hotel & travel agency staff have been trained, and community-based tourism projects have been successfully opened around the country. We are also working hard to improve infrastructure in Kaw Thaung and the Mergui Archipelago. Myanmar as a tourist destination has many different experiences to offer – from ancient temple sites in Bagan and Mrauk U to trekking in the mountains in Chin state or enjoying the nature and remote islands and beaches in Mergui.

What is your message to the world’s TOs and TAs present at ITB Berlin?

Myanmar, to get to know the county and the people and maybe most of all: explain to your clients that Myanmar is an all-year-round destination and there are plenty of good reasons to visit during the green season. In the past many TOs and TAs had the wrong perception that it was only possible to visit Myanmar from Oct to March and as a result many people working in tourism were not able to earn enough income during the rest of the year and hotels were empty. MOHT wants to correct this wrong perception right and invite people to visit Myanmar all year ‘round. We want to encourage TO’s and TA’s to convince their clients to visit more of the Myanmar countryside and not just limit their experiences to the well-known attractions like Yangon, Mandalay, Bagan and Inle Lake