Vietnam and Egypt have agreed on the need to conduct more bilateral activities in the spirit of the Memorandum of Understanding on Tourism Cooperation inked in 2006.

The consensus was reached at talks between Head of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT) Nguyen Van Tuan and Chairman of the Egyptian Tourist Authority Naser Hamdy in Cairo on May 27.

During the meeting, host and guest discussed concrete measures to address difficulties facing the two countries’ travel companies.

The Vietnamese side suggested that the Egyptian tourism sector work with Egypt Air on opening direct flights to Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City as early as possible following the establishment of the airline’s representative office in Vietnam .

The VNAT leader also laid special emphasis on the need for more information exchange to help promote the two countries’ tourism potential.

He took the occasion to brief his host on the development of Vietnam ’s tourism over the past three decades, noting that while the number of international arrivals to Vietnam has experienced a three-fold rise over the past decade to reach 7 million visitors in 2012, an estimated 4 million Vietnamese people travel abroad each year.

For his part, Naser Hamdy pledged efforts to promote the image of Vietnam in his country.

Last year, Egypt welcomed 9 million foreign holiday-makers, he said, adding that the number of foreign visitors for the first three months of this year increased by 14 percent year-on-year.

During his stay in Egypt from May 23-27, Tuan and his entourage held several working sessions with representatives of Egypt Air and a number of Egyptian travel agencies to seek cooperative opportunities.-VNA