Flood Crisis in Myanmar Posing Threat to the Country’s Tourism
Myanmar’s flood crisis may cause a negative impression of the country and this is feared to be affecting great numbers of tourists visiting Myanmar. Because of this, tour operators feared that this will affect their business.
Because of great floods experienced by Myanmar, many of its tourist sites are affected. It damaged great swathes of farmland and numerous photos of such catastrophe were spread all over media and have reached the whole world. And according to the country’s tourist officials, this may have a great impact on their number of tourist arrivals.
Fortunately, the flood has not reached the main tourist spots visited by many. And with the upcoming elections, Myanmar is expecting a surge of tourists coming.
“My apprehension is that people may now think twice when visiting Myanmar after the flood has devastated the country”, Nay Aung; Oway founder and CEO said. “Out of 14 states, 12 have been hit by the flood. Hence, we are talking here about a vast area in Myanmar that was affected”, Nay added.
However, Myanmar Tourism Federation acted on the situation. Instead of just waiting for possible negative impact of the flood on the country’s tourism, they sent members to the flood affected areas to update on their present condition and gather latest information. This is the least that they can do to stop the negative reports that has been spreading about the country.
The problem about media is that some send wrong reports while others do not update their data. Hence, people can only see the old news about the country’s flood situation again and again”, Vice Chairman Maung Maung Swe stated.
Myanmar’s tourism officials are expecting around five million people who will go on myanmar tours this year. These are overseas nationals who are expected to come home by November for the country’s general election.
“Tourists will be flocking to Myanmar by November not just because it is the country’s tourist season but also because this is the date of our general election. Hence, visitors can participate on one of the country’s important events.” Maun Maung said.
The flood has not reached Yangon’s Shwedagon Pagoda and Inle Lake as well as Bagan’s cultural heritage sites. And Myanmar’s tourist officials have assured tourists that the country is still safe to travel, inviting more to come. However, tourism officials of Myanmar can only gauge the effects of the flood when the peak season comes. For now, they are hoping for the best as they exert effort to update the whole world about the country’s present condition.