Wind surfing is a popular sport among foreign tourists in Binh Thuan (Photo: VNA)

Binh Thuan (VNA) – Officials in the south central province of Binh Thuan admitted shortcomings in local tourism activities and vowed to take action to maintain tourists’ impressions of the area as a safe, friendly destination.

At a meeting on tourism on February 23, Director of the provincial Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism Ngo Minh Chinh pointed out flaws in local tourism activities. There was a shortage of new tourism products and services, rescue stations and public toilets. Rampant illegal street vending and heckling were also putting a strain on local tourism.

Vice Chairman of the Binh Thuan People’s Committee Nguyen Thanh Tam asked relevant agencies to promptly address those shortcomings while removing obstacles to tourism investments and revoking idle tourism projects.

They also need to attract more Vietnamese tourists and improve the capacity of tourism staff, he added.

Binh Thuan aims to welcome 4.6 million tourists this year, including 490,000 foreigners, and collect 9 trillion VND (402.1 million USD) in tourism revenue.

About 4.2 million people spent their holiday in the province in 2015, a year-on-year increase of 11.7 percent. Most of the 455,000 foreign tourists were from Russia, China, Germany and Thailand. The province raked in 7.6 trillion VND from tourism activities, rising by 18 percent from the previous year.

It is housing 391 valid tourism projects, 164 of which went into operation, with a registered capital of 53.47 trillion VND. Meanwhile, 290 tourist accommodation establishments there provide more than 11,000 rooms.

Binh Thuan is one of Vietnam’s major tourism destinations, and a national centre for sea sports and leisure tourism.

The seaside town Mui Ne is well-known for its ideal climate for sea sports, especially kite surfing and windsurfing. Meanwhile, traditional festivals such as Nghinh Ong (whale worship) and Cham ethnics’ Kate draw visitors.-VNA