SOUTH KOREAN investors are interested in expanding their investment in the tourism industry throughout the Asean bloc due to strong interest of international tourists in the region.
For example, Daewoo Amara Co Ltd has expanded its initial 2013 investment in the Lotte Hotel Yangon, said CEO Lim Seon Kyu. The joint venture between the Korean consortium and a Myanmar partner was approved by the Myanmar Investment Commission, Lim told the Asean-Korea Tourism Investment Seminar 2018 held last week in Seoul.
Lim said the project was a success from when it opened six years ago, and had seen average yearly growth of 7.2 per cent. The tourism industry in Myanmar is experiencing strong growth, while the government policy is to develop the country’s infrastructure to serve a rising number of tourists.
Sehwan Oh, head of the global business development division of SPC Co Ltd, had one-on-one business discussions with Thai businesses about his company’s interest in expanding their investments in health tourism and spas, with a focus on Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam.
“Thailand has strong potential for health and spa businesses, as the number of tourists to Thailand is high when compared with others countries in Asean,” he said at the Seoul investment seminar.
An executive of a South Korea travel firm who joined the seminar last week said he found it useful for considering some new ideas and to get the big picture for investment potential in the Asean bloc.
He is also interested in investing in developing products for the tourism sector in Vietnam. Some 120 million international tourists visited Asean nations in 2017. It is estimated that tourism contributed 12.4 per cent of GDP in Asean for 2017, which is about four per cent higher than other regions of the world, according to an Asean-Korea Centre report.