Visitors to Hoi An ancient town of Quang Nam province (Photo: VNA)

HCM City (VNA) – A tourism training association of Vietnam was set up at a congress in Ho Chi Minh City on August 1 with a view to fostering manpower development in the industry.

The new association, founded by the Vietnam Tourism Association (VITA), gathers universities, colleges, vocational schools, research agencies, businesses, and organisations specialising in tourism.

It aims to connect, cooperation with and assist its members to develop tourism training, attract travel companies’ participation in personnel training, and design tourism skill standards.

VITA Vice Chairman Vu The Binh said manpower is the key factor in tourism competition which is increasingly fierce amid Vietnam’s international integration. Although the country boasts hundreds of tourism training facilities nationwide, it still lacks uniform professional criteria.

The establishment of the association is a landmark in the growth of the sector and helps tourism become a spearhead industry in Vietnam’s economy, he added.

About 5.5 million foreigners made holidays in Vietnam in the first seven months of 2016, a year-on-year increase of 24 percent. Meanwhile, the number of domestic tourists hit 38.2 million.

Total tourism revenue was over 234.97 trillion VND (10.54 billion USD), up 22.9 percent year on year, according to the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism.-VNA