Tourism economy in the north central region in international economic integration (TT)

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HO CHI MINH NATIONAL ACADEMY OF POLITICS AND PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION --------------------------- NGUYEN THI HONG LAM TOURISM ECONOMY IN THE NORTH CENTRAL REGION IN INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC INTEGRATION Specialism Code : Political economics : 62 31 01 01 SUMMARY OF DOCTORIAL (PhD) THESIS IN ECONOMICS HA NOI – 2013 The thesis is completed at the Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics and Public Administration Academic Supervisor: Assoc. Prof. Dr. An Nhu Hai Judge 1: Judge 2: Judge 3: The thesis will be defended in front of a panel of examining judges at Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics and Public Administration At date month 2013 The thesis is available at: National Library and Library of the Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics and Public Administration 1 INTRODUCTION 1. The necessity of the research Tourism is a synthetic industry which is highly intersectoral, interregional and socialised. Performances of this industry not only meets the rising demand for travel of human beings but also plays an essential role in the ”on-the-spot export” of goods and services abroad. In Vietnam, the tourism industry came into being in 1960, however, until 1990s it was regarded as an economy soon after the country’s open door policy. Since then, the tourism economy has grown rapidly and attained certain encouraging achievements. The North Central region is an economic zone consisting of Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Quang Tri and Thua Thien-Hue provinces, abounding in many valuable tourism potentials with diverse natural wonders and cultural identities. On the other hand, favourable traffic conditions regarding road, rail and waterway transport facilitates the region’s tourism economy to bring into full play its advantages and attract tourists. Over the past years, tourism economy in the North Central provinces has made a remarkable growth. Nevertheless, the current development of the tourism economy remains limited in regard to demands for international economic integration and the region’s potential. The matter here is how to tap into full potential and advantages of the tourism economy in the whole region to satisfy the demands for international economic integration to bring about high socio-economic effects? Under such circumstances, that the PhD candidate chooses the topic: “Tourism economy in the North Central provinces in international economic integration” which is of not only theoretical but also practical significance to the development of tourism economy in the North Central provinces in the coming time. 2. Purpose and task of the research - Purpose: To accelerate the development of tourism economy in the North Central provinces in the context of Vietnam’s deeper and greater integration in international economic relations from the point of political economics. - Task: 1) To systemize theoretical and practical foundations of tourism economy in international economic integration of a certain territory in Vietnam from the point of political economics, 2) To evaluate the reality of tourism economy in international economic integration in the North Central provinces, and 3) To propose directions and solutions to promote the development of tourism economy in the North Central provinces in international economic integration. 3. Subject and scope of the research: 2 - Subject of the research: All business activities related to tourism economy in the North Central provinces in international economic integration. - Scope of the research: + Space: The thesis studies tourism economy in the North Central provinces from economic approaches. The thesis does not study each province individually but considers each province’s tourism economy as a component of tourism economy of the whole North Central region. + Time scope: The situation of tourism economy from 2000 to the present; directions and solutions to 2020 with a vision to 2030. 4. Theoretical foundations and research methods of the thesis - Theoretical foundations: The Marxism - Leninism, Ho Chi Minh ideology, and standpoints, paths, renewal policies of the Party and State of Vietnam in regard to tourism economy development. - Research methods: + Research methods applied include abstractisation, analysis and synthesis, and logic plus historical background, statistical method, quantitative analysis, and comparative method; and selectively acquires some results of published scientific studies. 5. Scientific contributions and values of the thesis 1) Systemizing theories of tourism economy in international economic integration in a certain tourism area in Vietnam from the perspective of political economics. 2) Selecting lessons drawn from foreign countries’ experience in developing tourism economy to refer to the case of Vietnam in general and the case of the North Central region in particular. 3) Assessing the situation of tourism economy, the thesis analyzes achievements and shortcomings of tourism economy in the North Central provinces in international economic integration. 6. Conclusion Besides the introduction, conclusion, list of reference, and appendix the thesis comprises four chapters and eleven sections. Chapter 1 OVERVIEW OF RESEARCH ON TOURISM ECONOMY 1.1. FOREIGN STUDIES ON TOURISM ECONOMY A number of typical foreign researches focusing on tourism and tourism economy include: 1) The book “Tourism in Developing Countries” by Martin Oppermann and Kye - Sung Chon, was published in 1997 by International Thomson Business Press. 2) The research:“The Business of Rural Tourism International Perspectives” by co-authors Stephen J. Page and Don Getz, was printed by International Thomson Business Press in 1997. 3) The research: “Commercial 3 Recreation & Tourism - An Introduction to Business Oriented Recreation” by Susan A.Weston, was printed in 1996 by Brown & Benchmark. 4) The research: “Managing Tourism” was written in 1991 by Prof. S. Medlik and reprinted in 1995 by Butterworth - Heinemann. 5) The work: “The Economics of Leisure and Tourism” by John Tribe was published by Butterworth - Heinemann Ltd in 1995, etc. 1.2. DOMESTIC RESEARCHES ON TOURISM ECONOMY 1.2.1. Scientific researches and PhD theses There has been a great number of researches on tourism and tourism economy in Vietnam so far. Regarding these areas, it should be noted the scientific researches and PhD theses as followed: 1) Ministerial-leveled work (2007): “Research develops Vietnam’s tourism products of high competitiveness in the region and in the world”, is carried out by a group of authors, led by Dr. Do Cam Tho, from the Institute for Tourism Development Research. 2) Ministerial-level research (2008):“Scientific ground to develop coastal tourism in the North Central region”, is carried out by a group of authors led by Assoc Prof. and Dr. Pham Trung Luong of the National Institute for Tourism Development Research. 3) Ministerial-level research (2011) “The status quo of and solutions to develop national sea tourism regions in the North Central region”, is carried out by a group of authors led by Dr. Nguyen Thu Hanh, of the Institute for Tourism Development Research. 4) The Vietnam National Administration of Tourism’s research: “Policy and solutions to promote tourism development in the central and Central Highlands region” (2001). 5) The report: “Master plan on tourism development in the North Central region to 2020, with a vision to 2030” (2012) by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. 6) Thesis of economics by Hoang Thi Ngoc Lan of the Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics and Public Administration, Ha Noi (2007), “Ha Tay’s tourism market”, etc. 1.2.2. Researches in the form of books and other publications Among these publications, those focusing tourism and tourism economy so far include: 1) The book “Tourism market” by Nguyen Van Luu, Ha Noi National Publishing House, 2009. 2) The “Tourism economy syllabus” book is written by Prof., Dr. NguyenVan Dinh and Assoc. Prof., Dr. Nguyen Van Dinh and published by the National Economics University, Ha Noi, in 2008. 3) The “Travel Business Management Syllabus” text book by co-authors Assoc. Prof., Dr. Nguyen Van Manh and Assoc. Prof., Dr. Pham Hong Chuong, National Economics University’s Publishing House, Ha Noi, 2009, etc. In addition, on the national scientific research forum there are numerous articles related to tourism economy in the context of international economic integration, notably: “Tourism Development in the North Central Region: Issues raised”(2010) by Assoc. Prof., Dr. Pham Trung Luong at the workshop on “Orientations of Tourism Development in the North Central Region” 4 organised in Vinh City, Nghe An Province. “Tourism Development in the Greater Mekong Subregion” (2010) by Dr. Nguyen Van Dung and MA Nguyen Tien Luc, Vietnam Tourism Magazine, 10th edition. “Tourism Development in the Greater Mekong Subregion” (2010) by Dr. Nguyen Van Dung and MA Nguyen Tien Luc, Vietnam Tourism Magazine, 10th edition, etc. 1.3 GENERAL RESULTS OF PUBLISHED STUDIES AND ISSUES RAISED FOR FURTHER STUDY ON TOURISM ECONOMY 1.3.1. General results of published studies associated with tourism economy The authors focus on key issues as followed: 1) The authors define fundamental characteristics of tourism economy with comprehension related to tourism economy: concept of tourism, tourism economy, ecotourism, tourists, competition ability of tourism destination, tourism human resources, State management of tourism economy, etc. 2) Characteristics, situation, and development trends of tourism economy in nations all over the world at present. 3) The authors analyse, specify tourism products, tourism product mechanism, the role of components of tourism products, the role of tourism economy to the socio-economic development of the nation and regions in regards to component factors of tourism supply and demand. 4) The reality of tourism market in some cities and provinces in Vietnam. 5) Numerous solutions to diversify and increase the quality of tourism products in some provinces in Vietnam. Nevertheless, in regards to theory, published scientific researches have not specified concepts of tourism economy from the perspective of political economics, and typical features of tourism economy; have not analysed systematically components of tourism economy, the relation between tourism economy and socioeconomic development, and factors influencing tourism economy in the international economic integration. The researches have not analysed to the full opportunities and challenges of the international economic integration to Vietnam’s tourism economy in general and to the North Central region’s tourism economy in particular. Regarding practical approach, the researches have not mentioned to the full and comprehensively the reality of tourism economy in the North Central region. The authors have not analysed comprehensively the new economic context of tourism economy in the North Central provinces in the international economic integration. Also, the authors have not presented systematically targets, orientations, and solutions to develop tourism economy in the North Central provinces in the context of international economic integration. In order to help with addressing the problem, the subject: “Tourism Economy in the North Central Provinces in International Economic Integration” that the postgraduate has chosen to study is new, and of theoretical and practical significance. 5 1.3.2. Issues raised for further study: 1) Specifying theories of tourism economy and tourism economy development in the new context of national and international situations, and international economic integration from the perspective of political economics. 2) Studying lessons of success and unsuccessfulness from nations worldwide on the current tourism economy development in the international economic integration to draw valuable lessons of experience for Vietnam in general and for the North Central region in particular to learn from. 3) Specifying the reality of tourism economy in the North Central provinces and indicate strengths and limitations in the development process of this economic sector to propose objectives, orientations, and solutions to accelerate development in the time to come. Chapter 2 THEORETICAL AND PRACTICAL GROUNDS OF TOURISM ECONOMY IN INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC INTEGRATION 2.1 TOURISM ECONOMY AND COMPONENTS OF TOURISM ECONOMY 2.1.1 Tourism and tourism economy 2.1.1.1 Tourism  Conception From the perspective of political economics, and views it as the general of phenomena and economic relations which arise from the mutual influences between tourists, tourism businesspeople, local authorities, and local community in the process of attracting and retain tourists. Tourism is an activity of many specific characteristics with many participating components, thus, making itself a very complicated general. Tourism operation bears both characteristics of an economic sector, and of an economic-social sector.  Tourism product and its typical features Tourism products are “services and commodities provided to tourists are produced through the combination of exploiting natural and social factors with material and technical facilities as well as labour forces in an establishment, a region or a country. Characteristics of tourism products: Apart from common features of ordinary commodities, tourism products are characterised by special features as followed: Firstly, once an ordinary commodity is sold to a buyer its values will vanish slowly or even be lost after the first use, whilst the values of tourism products are not. The tourism products’ values will exist in the feelings and evaluations of tourists and the values can even be acknowledged through the tourists’ words of mouth. Secondly, the consumption of tourism products does not occur regularly but during certain time in a day (in regards to products offered at a restaurant), in a week (in regards to products 6 offered at the year-end tourism season), during a year (in regards to products of some tourism categories: mountain tourism, and beach tourism, etc...). It is the very these characteristics that tourism is a highly seasonal operation. In facts, in the tourism product mechanism, tourism services make up a considerable percentage (about 80-90%), therefore, it is extremely important to find out about and properly assess characteristics of tourism products.  Tourism service and its typical features Tourism service is “the supply of services on travel, transport, accommodation, food and beverage, amusement, recreation, information, guidance, and other services to meet the demands of tourists. Tourism is a type of services which contains common features of services and typical features of its own: the intangibility of services, the synchronism of tourism service production and consumption, the involvement of tourists in the production of services, the immovability of tourism services, the ownership unchangability of tourism services, and the unequability of the quality.  Types of tourism Depending on different modes of classification, tourism can be classified as follows: 1) In regard to territorial scope of travel, tourism is divided into international and domestic tourism. 2) In regard to tourists’ demands, tourism can be: medical tourism, recreational and relaxation tourism, excursions tourism, sports tourism, MICE (meetings, incentives, conference, and exhibitions), and spiritual tourism, etc. 3) In regard to geographical position of the destination: mountain tourism, beach tourism, river tourism, lake tourism, city tourism, and countryside tourism. 4) In regard to means of transport facilitating tourists’ travel: tourism by bicycle, motorbikes, automobiles, train, and airplane. 5) In regard to the tour organisation, tourism is divided into group and individual tourism. 6) In regard to the length of tourists’ travel, tourism is divided into short-day and long-day tourism, etc. 2.1.1.2. Tourism economy Tourism economy is an economic relation in the field of tourism product supply and consists of relations among travel business, tourism lodging service business, tourism transport business, tourism area and tourism spot development, and other tourism services business in order to satisfy the spiritual demand of tourists and bring bout significant social, economic and political benefits for the tourism enterprises and the country. Tourism economy is a non-smoke industry and a nonmaterial production area but brings about huge material and spiritual values. Tourism economy is a service industry with typical characteristics: being sensitive, highly synthetic, multidisciplinary, multi-sector, expenditure-oriented, interregional and seasonal. On the basis of the objectives of tourism businesses in the 7 world in general and the Law of Tourism in Vietnam in particular, indicators to evaluate tourism economy may include: tourists, earnings from tourists, tourism industry’s gross products, and tourism economy effects, etc. 2.1.2. Tourism economy components Tourism economy is a synthetic industry consisting of relations between such major sectors and businesses as follows: 2.1.2.1. Travel business In fact, related to the travel business, tourism experts often mention major operations as “trading and signing business contracts with internal and external tourism business organisations to build and implement tours which have been sold to tourists”. However, the fact indicates that the travel business mainly involves the two popular operations: travel business and travel agency business. 2.1.2.2. The business of tourism accommodation Accommodation establishments are those who rent out bedrooms to tourists and provide other services to satisfy tourists’ demands during their stay, in which hotel is the most popular type of lodging. Accommodation business is one of important sectors contributing considerable income for tourism economy. 2.1.2.3. The business of tourist transportation The business of tourist transport is an operation enabling tourists to move from their living place to a tourism site as well as to move within the tourism site. There is a number of means of transport available to serve this business, namely automobiles, train, ships, and airplane. 2.1.2.4. The business of tourism area and tourism site development The business of tourism area and tourism site development takes into account: the investment to preserve and upgrade available tourism resources; tapping the full potential of available tourism resources for development new tourism area and site; and building tourism infrastructure, and material and technical facilities. 2.1.2.5. The business of other tourism services Apart from business operations mentioned above, tourism economy components also include the business of recreational activities, advertisement, promotion, and tourism investment consultancy, etc. 2.2. THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN TOURISM ECONOMY AND SOCIO-ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND FACTOS AFFECTING TOURISM ECONOMY IN INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC INTEGRATION 2.2.1. The relationship between tourism economy and socio-economic development 2.2.1.1. The influence of tourism economy on socio-economic development: 1) The development of tourism economy contributes to enhancing the economic growth; 2) Tourism economy develops will advance the transition of the national 8 economic structure; 3) The development of tourism economy contributes to boosting domestic and foreign investment, which eventually increases the whole economy’s total demand; 4) The development of tourism economy contributes to promoting and developing other economic relationships including the relations in investment cooperation, production co-operation, trading, and services between economic subjects and components; 5) The development of tourism economy increases social employment and income; 6) The attraction and expansion of international tourists, the development of tourism economy will be a vital information channel to promote the host country’s images. 2.2.1.2. The socio-economic impacts on the development of tourism economy: The development of economic sectors like industry, agriculture and handicrafts, etc will help improve the society’s material-technical facilities, contributing to enhancing the quality of services in the chain of tourism services. The development of social sectors such as culture, education, and health, etc will promote the attractiveness, and competitiveness of destination brands for tourism economy. Other sectors including telecommunications, electronics, traffic and transport, etc develop will help promote tourism brand names, introduce tourism products, and connect tours for tourism economy. Other service sectors including finance, banking, securities and insurance, etc, if well-developed, will be a major supporting force for the development of tourism economy. Thus, the general socio-economic development will help enhance the infrastructure, intellectual standards of people, and convenient services, etc, speeding up the development of tourism economy. 2.2.2. Factors affecting tourism economy in the international economic integration 2.2.2.1. The State role in tourism economy development * The State creates the socio-economic and political environment. Political environment is presented first and foremost through the nation’s system of legislation, policy and institution. A peaceful and stable politics will be an important premise for the country’s development in general and the development of tourism economy in particular. The socio-economic environment of tourism economy is presented through the development level of sectors and the labour output of the home country. Tourism economy is a synthetic industry, thus, it can only develop when other industries develop. * The State maps out development strategy and planning for tourism economy. Tourism economy development strategy is a component of the State and Party’s socio-economic development strategies. It is a tool to provide a long-term vision of the performance of tourism economy in a particular period of time. 9 Tourism planning is a collection of theoretical and practical foundations to be involved in collective or separate tourism sites associated with the investment and production process. If tourism planning is done well, this will help increase tourism benefits and minimise negative effects that tourism economy may have on local communities and enterprises. 2.2.2.2. Potentials of resources for tourism economy development The potentials of resources for the development of tourism economy includes tourism resources, financial resources, and human resources for tourism performance. Tourism resources are essential to the scale, quality and the uniqueness of tourism products. The richer and more diverse tourism resources are, the more they absorb tourists both internally and externally. Human resources for tourism: If a nation or an enterprise builds up a highquality human resource, this is an essential factor to create tourism products of high quality, promoting the competitiveness of the tourism destination in general and of each enterprise in particular. Capital resource is of significant influence on the development of tourism economy. Tourism economy is competitive and appealing to tourists or not, largely depending on the modernity of material and infrastructure facilities and tourism accommodation establishments. The modernity of material and infrastructure facilities and tourism accommodation establishments completely relies on the scale and efficient usage of investment capital. 2.2.2.3. The scale and quality of suppliers of tourism products and services The quantity, scale and quality of suppliers of tourism products and services have an important affect on the development of tourism economy. If tourism enterprises provide products and services seasonal, suitable to tourist tastes with a competitive price will certainly appeal to tourists and be able to keep them stay longer. In addition, if tourism enterprises co-exist and develop will create a fair competition to promote the quality of services. 2.2.2.4. International economic integration and its impacts on tourism economy - International economic integration is a process nations initiatively connect their own economy with the regional and international economies through efforts to liberalise the economy and mitigate the difference to become an integrated part of the global economy. - International economic integration creates both opportunities for a nation to develop tourism economy and challenges in the development process. + Opportunities: i, opportunity to increase international tourism share; ii, opportunity to reform; iii, opportunity to expand the market and develop new forms of tourism; iv, new competition opportunities for tourism economy in countries all over the world; v, opportunity to build an efficient supporting policy system, etc. 10 + Challenges: i, to conserve traditional cultural values; ii, to increase environmental pressure; and iii, fiercer competition, etc 2.3. FOREIGN EXPERIENCE IN TOURISM ECONOMY DEVELOPMENT THAT VIETNAM IN GENERAL AND THE NORTH CENTRAL PROVINCES IN PARTICULAR CAN LEARN FROM 2.3.1. The State pays attention to developing tourism economy, regarding it as a non-smoke industry: i, the role of tourism economy in socio-economic development policy should be seriously considered; ii, a country should have national policies for the development of tourism economy and highly regard tourism economy strategies. 2.3.2. Experience in programming tourism promotion and marketing activities: i, well implement strategies of marketing and promoting products and destinations; ii, attach much importance to investment for tourism promotion strategies. 2.3.3. Experience in training human resources for tourism economy: i, attaching much importance to foster and use tourism human resources; ii, paying due attention to training professional tour guides. 2.3.4. Construct and diversify tourism products: i, bringing into full play cultural values, faiths, and other attractions in constructing tourism products; ii, attaching much importance to enhancing the competitiveness of tourism products; iii, establishing and developing tourism products are prioritised in the tourism economy development strategy; iv, attaching much importance to supplying supportive services for tourism economy; v, experience of an excellent tourism operator, etc. 2.3.5. Experience from association and co-operation in tourism economy development: Those with a developed tourism industry like Singapore and Thailand, etc have associated and co-operated with each other for many years. They work together to link tours and to produce typical and special tourism products for each nation, lower tour price and create a level competitive price, etc to attract international tourists. 2.3.6. Experience of visa waiver for tourists, creating a stable political environment, ensuring security and safety of tourists: Visa waiver for tourists is a strategic policy to attract international tourists. On the other hand, political stability, peace and clean ecological environment are ideal conditions for tourist attraction. These experiences are precious lessons for not only Vietnam but also the North Central provinces, which they should and need to learn from for the development of tourism economy in the international economic integration. Nevertheless, Vietnam in general and the North Central provinces in particular should pay attention to special characteristics of their own to put forward proper development policies to bring about the desired effects for tourism economy. 11 Chapter 3 REAL SITUATION OF THE TOURISM ECONOMY IN THE NORTH CENTRAL REGION IN INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC INTEGRATION 3.1. IMPACTS OF NATURAL AND SOCIO-ECONOMIC CONDITIONS IN THE NORTH CENTRAL PROVINCES ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF THEIR TOURISM ECONOMY 3.1.1. Natural and socio-economic conditions in the North Central provinces 3.1.1.1. Natural conditions The North Central Region is narrow, in terms of its horizontal line. The region is located between the Tam Diep mountain range in the North and the Bach Ma mountain range in the South which is the natural border between the region and the Costal South Central Region. The region, consisting of six provinces, namely Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Quang Tri and Thua Thien – Hue, is 52,534.2 square kilometres in area. To the West, the region is bordered by the Truong Son mountain range, while to the North it borders the Lao People’s Democratic Republic. Vietnam’s North-West Region and the Red River Delta are also on the North of the region. To the South, it borders the Costal South Central Region, while the East Sea is on the East of the region. The region is rather rich of natural tourism resources as well as humanity tourism resources, favourable for tourism economy development. 3.1.1.2. Socio-economic conditions With a population of approximately 16,556,700 people, there have been positive changes in the region’s socio-economic development in recent years. All achievements have been made in the field of socio-economy, national defence and public security. As a result of market-oriented adjustments of economic structure, private and foreign invested sectors represented a higher ratio while that of state-own (at both central and local levels) and collective sectors was lower. In addition to the adjustments of economic structure, labour force structure has been reformed accordingly. 3.1.2. Advantages and limitations from natural and socio-economic conditions for development of tourism economy in the North Central provinces 3.1.2.1. Advantages The North Central region has a rich and diversified tourism potential representatives of which are 6 world heritage sites, recognised by the UNESCO, namely ancient imperial city of Hue, Phong Nha – Ke Bang National Park, the Royal Refined Music of Hue, Ho Dynasty Citadel. In addition, the woodblocks of Nguyen Dynasty are also recognised by UNESCO as a “World Documentary Heritage”. 3.1.2.2. Limitations and disadvantages Apart from above-mentioned advantages, the North Central region’s tourism economy, with the tendency of international economic integration, is facing lots of 12 difficulties and obstacles as following: The North Central region is located in an area most directly affected by natural disasters as storms, floods, hot and dry winds. Although the GDP per capita in the region has been increased, but still lower than that of the nation. In the process of transition to a market economy, there were not enough skilled and experienced workers, etc. This certainly poses challenges for the tourism economy development in the region. 3.2. REAL SITUATION OF THE TOURISM ECONOMY IN THE NORTH CENTRAL PROVINCES IN THE FRAMEWORK OF INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC INTEGRATION SINCE 2000 UNTIL PRESENT DAY 3.2.1. Real situation of travel business At present, in association with investment projects for socio-economic development in their respective provinces, domestic travel agents operating in Ha Tinh, Quang Tri and Thua Thien - Hue have done market reach in Northeast Asia. As a result, the number of foreign tourists increased.. In the mean time, some agents became more dynamic in doing business, thus drawing more tourists from Northeast Thailand and South Laos (with caravan type) through Lao Bao and Cau Treo border gates. The North Central provinces saw a rising number of domestic and international visitors in recent years. Proportions of tourists have positively changed in favour of the region’s tourism economy. It is shown in the following figures: + International arrivals in the North Central region Figure 3.1 : The number of international arrivals in the North Central region (2000 - 2011) Unit: A thousand visitors Source: Data: Institute for Tourism Development Research Conducted by: PhD candidate 13 Table 3.3: International arrivals to the North Central region in comparison with other regions in the country (2000 - 2011) Source: Institute for Tourism Development Research. + Domestic arrivals to the North Central region Figure 3.4: The number of domestic arrivals to the North Central region (2000 - 2011) Unit: A thousand tourists Source: Data: Institute for Tourism Development Research. Conducted by: PhD candidate 14 Figure 3.5: Domestic arrivals to the North Central region in comparison with other regions (2000 - 2011) Unit:a thousand tourists Source : Institute for Tourism Development Research. 3.2.2. Reality of tourism business in accommodation In terms of quantity, in 2000, the total number of accommodation establishments in the region stood at 421, offering 9,337 already rooms to serve tourists. In 2005, the figure was more than two folds at 882 units with 19,668 rooms. In 2011, the sum reached 1,915 with 39,145 rooms, four times more than the 2000 figure. Regarding quality, accommodation has seen improvement in accordance with the growth in number, which is presented through the following tables: Table 3.2: Quality of accommodation establishments in the North Central region (2009 – 2011) Rank 2009 Number of Accommodation establishments 2010 Number of Accommodation establishments Number rooms 1 star 78 5.1% 2,769 2 stars 80 5.2% 3 stars 17 4 stars 2011 Number of Accommodation Establishments Number rooms Number rooms 8.6% 86 5.4% 2,769 8.1% 127 6.6% 2,736 7.0% 3,883 12.1% 83 5.2% 3,883 11.3% 101 5.3% 4,178 10.7% 1.1% 1,318 4.1% 27 1.7% 2,003 5.8% 29 1.5% 2,161 5.5% 10 0.7% 1,308 4.1% 13 0.8% 1,787 5.2% 16 0.8% 2,227 5.7% 5 stars 3 0.2% 423 1.3% 4 0.3% 655 1.9% 4 0.2% 648 1.7% Total 1,525 100% 32,188 100% 1,587 100% 34,251 100% 1,915 100% 39,145 100% of Source: Institute for Tourism Development Research. of of 15 3.2.3. Reality of business in tourist transportation In recent years, especially since 2000, along with the national course of renovation, services for tourist transportation nationwide in general and in the northern central provinces in particular have shown positive development. Means of transport for tourism have evolved into diverse range of types, quality and quantity: aviation transport, land transport, rail transport and water transport. 3.2.4. Reality of the development of tourism zones, destination and products - Tourism activities in the northern central provinces are devided into four groups with respective tourism products including : (i), sea resorts mainly found in Sam Son, Cua Lo, Thien Cam, Lang Co, Dong Hoi ; (ii), heritage tourism : the ancient citadel of Hue ; (iii), ecotourism : Phong Nha-Ke Bang ; (iv), historical site tourism : Kim Lien – Nam Dan, Quang Tri Citadel, Truong Son national cemetary, Vinh Moc underground tunnels, Dong Loc intersection. - Reality of tourism products in the northern central provinces on offerings: Table 3.3: The production of tourism products in the North Central provinces from 2000 to present Province Major products - Beach tourism: Sam Son beach Thanh - Cultural tourism: tours to learn about culture Hoa and history at Ho Citadel , Lam Kinh relic, Ham Rong cultural relic, Tu Thuc Cave – Mai An Tiem Temple, Cam Luong spring - Ecotourism: tours to visit and learn about the ecosystem of the Ben En National Park, Pu Luong Nature Reserve. - Tours to Na Meo international border gate. Nghe An - Beach tourism: Cua Lo and Hon Me beaches, etc - Cultural tourism: tours to learn about culture and history at Kim Lien – Nam Dan relic complex; - Ecotourism: tours to learn about the ecosystem at Pu Mat National Park; - Tours to Nam Can international border gate. Ha Tinh - Beach tourism: Thien Cam beach - Cultural tourism: + Tours to Nguyen Du National Relic; + Culture and education tours to Dong Luc Subsidiary products - Traditional festivals: Lam Kinh Festival, Ba Trieu Festival, Na Palace Festival, Song Temple Festival, Mai An Tiem Temple Festival. - Tour to Dong Son cultural relics. - Cuong Temple Festival; - Tours to coastal islands; - Travel by boat on Lam River. - Ecotourism: Vu Quang National Park, Ke Go Lake; Tours to shrines 16 Province Major products Subsidiary products Junction; worshiping Tran Phu and + Huong (Perfume) Pagoda Festival; Ha Huy Tap (former - Tours to visit, shop and transit at Cau Treo general secretaries of the international border gate. Communist Party of Vietnam), and Ha Tinh City’s relic complex; - Tours to visit craft villages: Thai Yen carpentry, Trung Luong forging village; - Mountain climbing: Hong Mountain - Ecotourism: Phong Nha – Ke bang caves; - Traditional festivals: boat Quang - Beach tourism: Nhat Le and Da Nhay beaches; racing festival, Lunar Binh - Cultural tourism: tours to visit Dong Hoi City’s March Full Moon festival; historical relics; - Beach sports activities; - Tours to visit and transit at Cha Lo international - Relaxation and medical border gate. tourism at Bang hot spring; - Ecotourism at Mooc Spring. Cultural tourism: tours to visit, study historical and - Shopping Quang revolutionary relics, spiritual education at a system - Cuisine Tri of relics associated with the American war. Beach tourism: Cua Tung and Cua Viet beaches; Tours to visit, shop and transit at Lao Bao international border gate; Ecotourism: tours to learn about the ecosystem at Con Co Island. Cultural tourism: - Boat tours on Huong Thua Thien – + Tours to visit and study cultural heritage sites River; (the Hue Complex of Monuments, The Royal - Medical tourism at My Hue Court Music); An mineral water and mud + Spiritual tourism; bath; + Cuisine. - Tours to visit craft Beach tourism: Lang Co and Canh Duong villages; beaches; - Ecotourism at house MICE; gardens. - Ecotourism: Bach Ma National Park, Tam Giang Lagoon. Source: Institute for Tourism Development Research. 17 3.2.5. Reality of relations between tourism economy and other sectors Relation between tourism economy and cultural sector; ii, Relation between tourism economy and forestry industry; iii, Relation between tourism economy and transport sector; iv, Relation between tourism economy and irrigation and aquaculture; v, Relation between tourism economy and industry in terms of exploiting minerals and construction materials. 3.3. ASSESSMENT OF THE SITUATION OF TOURISM ECONOMY OF THE NORTHERN CENTRAL PROVINCES IN THE INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC INTEGRATION FROM 2000 TO PRESENT 3.3.1. Achievements gained from tourism economy in the northern central provinces in all areas: Firstly, significant increase in income generated from tourists. Secondly, there has been a shift in the structure of total earnings from tourists in the overall map of earnings in the North Central provinces. Thirdly, structure of total earnings from tourists by economic sector has also undergone changes in a positive manner. Fourthly, increasingly attracting labour to accommodation establishments. Fifthly, increased investment into the development of tourism economy. Sixthly, the tourism economy has contributed to the socio-economic development of the northern central provinces. 3.3.2. Shortcomings: Firstly, regarding the market, although there have been many changes in the market structure of tourists; the northern central provinces have failed to appeal those from the high-end markets. The proportion of tourists remains unchanged and tends to be long stayed and scale of expenditure by tourists is still low. Secondly, tourism products in the region are lack of uniqueness and high competitiveness. Thirdly, the economic structure has been shifted in the positive direction but the speed is still slow, falling short of desire. Fourthly, the operation of travel agencies in the Northern central provinces is sparse, unprofessional coupled with ineffective performance and weakness in competitiveness and reaching out foreign markets. Fifthly, the capacity of international tourism integration is limited. 3.3.3. Reasons for shortcomings - Subjective reasons: 1) The tourism economy in the northern central provinces faces fierce competition against other players. 2) Tourism resources are scattered sparsely. 3) The infrastructure in the northern central provinces is not synchronized. 4) System of accommodation establishments is small scaled and inconvenient. 5) Tourism economy in the northern central provinces is under impacts of the climate change. - Objective reasons: 1) The scale of quality of communications and promotion campaigns for tourism are poor. 2) Capacity of human resources for tourism economy 18 in the northern central provinces is inadequate while the structure is unsound. 3) Management capacity in the tourism economy is incapable, failing to reach the demand. 4) Investment into the tourism economy is still inappropriate. 5) The importance of international cooperation in tourism business is underestimated. 6) Tourism environment shows shortcomings. Chapter 4 DIRECTIONS AND SOLUTIONS TO IMPROVED DEVELOPMENT OF TOURISM ECONOMY IN THE NORTH CENTRAL PROVINCES IN INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC INTEGRATION 4.1. Context and directions to develop tourism economy in the North Central provinces to 2020 with a vision to 2030 4.1.1. The new context of tourism economy in the North Central provinces 4.1.1.1. The international context Vietnam’s commitments to: the ASEAN member countries and the multilateral framework. 4.1.1.2. National context - New opportunities: i, Vietnam has always actively into the regional and global economy both in depth and on wide scale as well as boost bilateral cooperations. ii, After the global financial crisis, Vietnam has reformed economic structure. iii, Vietnam is boosting up industrialization, modernization process in line with developing knowledge economy. iv, Local government’s awareness at all level and people’s awareness in the North Central provinces have increased significantly. - Difficulties and challenges: i, Exploitation of natural resources, landscape, tourism environment and human resource is not compatible with potentials. ii, Human resource in tourism industry has not met the requirements for professional and practical skills, integration, and connection to global market. iii, Capability of capital resource and technology is still limited. iv, The pressure of intensive international competition, etc. 4.1.2. Directions to develop tourism economy in the North Central provinces to 2020 with a vision to 2030 4.1.2.1. Development of tourism products: 1) Development of tourism activities in heritage sites associated with promoting marine tourism. 2) Development of tourism product through tourism types. 3) Development of other tourism products. 4.1.2.2. Increasing investment to develop tourism economy: Raising investment capital for tourism economic development from the different resources. North Central provinces should invest resouces in targeted projects and programs in
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