The Government has discussed measures to address difficulties for tourism development, including the granting of visas for visitors at the regular meeting in May, Minister-Chairman of the Government Office Nguyen Van Nen told the press following the Cabinet meeting on May 27.

The minister said that the Prime Minister will issue instructions on this issue, he said, adding that relevant agencies and localities are to brainstorm on how to overcome weaknesses and fully tap tourism potential.

According to the minister, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism suggested setting up a fund for tourism promotion in the context of falling numbers of foreign visitors to Vietnam over the past months.

Besides the unfavourable global economic developments, such as the appreciation of USD, the depreciation of EUR and JPY, and falling oil prices, which undermined people's willingness to spend money on travel, the drop is also attributable to changes in visa, transit and cruise travel regulations and the National Administration of Tourism's ineffective coordination between localities.

Answering questions on the decrease in export of agricultural products, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Do Thang Hai said his ministry will continue to accelerate negotiations on free trade agreements with foreign partners to seek good trade conditions for domestic products.

The ministry will also speed up trade promotion, focusing on domestic markets, especially those in mountainous, border and island areas, he added.

At the same time, the official stressed the need to improve the quality and productivity of agricultural products.

The deputy minister also reported on measures to boost the consumption of lychee, which will be in season soon.

The ministry has worked to establish partnerships between lychee producing provinces and Ho Chi Minh City and other southern localities to ship lychees to the southern markets.

The Dutch Centre for the Promotion of Imports has set up a programme to help with the export of Vietnamese lychees to EU countries, he stated.-VNA