Ho Chi Minh City plans more entertainment, tourism activities
Update: Mar 16, 2017
A wide variety of exciting cultural, sports, fashion and cuisine events will be planned annually in HCM City to attract more tourists, city leaders have said.

At least one tourism event will be held monthly, said Dinh La Thang, Secretary of the HCM City Party Committee.

Tourism activities and products should be more diverse, Thang said at a recent conference on the Political Bureau’s Resolution on tourism development.

Under the resolution, the tourism industry is expected to become a spearhead economic sector by 2030 and help Viet Nam to be included on the list of countries with a leading tourism industry in Southeast Asia.

Thang said that fake goods, low-quality products and poor food hygiene as well as pavement encroachment and sales fraud should be eliminated to make the city a safe and modern destination for tourists.

Strategic planning on tourism development with linkages to other regions in the country and destinations abroad is expected to be formulated soon.

Concerted efforts from departments, agencies and stakeholders are needed to develop tourism into a spearhead sector and raise the number of foreign visitors to 10 million a year, he said.

Vo Anh Tai, deputy general director of Saigontourist Holding Company, said there would be more night activities for visitors, including entertainment options and tourism services round-the-clock.

Scott Hodetts, general director of Sheraton Saigon Hotel & Tower, said the city had achieved great improvement in tourism infrastructure and human resources.

However, procedures for tourist visa applications and customs clearance for goods serving conferences and events remain barriers to attracting foreign visitors.

He suggested that authorities take measures to operate effective entertainment services throughout the night.

In 2016, the city welcomed 5.2 million foreign and 21.8 million domestic tourists.

Tourism revenue was estimated at 103 trillion VND (4.53 billion USD), contributing 11 percent to the city’s GDP.