The Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO) is administered out of the offices of the Department of Tourism of the Ministry of Tourism and Sports of Thailand, based in Bangkok, and was established with funding from the six governments of Cambodia, China, Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam, and Thailand, which represent the Greater Mekong Sub-region (GMS). A common goal of both of public and private sectors in all countries is to create sustainable tourism profit. This is achieved optimally by increasing inbound tourism yield, by developing quality products that tourists are willing to buy, and inciting longer stays with enhanced motivation to revisit. Thus, GMS’s strategy is to “develop and promote the Mekong Region as a single tourism destination. In 2016 the GMS welcomed 59.8 million international tourist arrivals, representing a 3% share of the global market. The MTCO, via Destination Mekong, aims to collaborate with public and private sectors to execute programs, such as Mekong Moments, the Mekong Mini Movie Festival, the Experience Mekong Collection, Mekong Trends, and the Mekong Innovative Startups in Tourism (MIST) program.Learn More
The Mekong Tourism Forum provides a cooperative platform for public and private sector stakeholders in the tourism industry to discuss the development, marketing and promotion of travel to, from and within the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS), and monitor sustainable and responsible tourism growth. The Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO) has revived the forum in 2010 taking place in Siem Reap, Cambodia, with the theme of “New Roads, New Opportunities”. Followed by MTF 2011 “Destination Mekong: The Making of a Star” in Pakse, Laos, MTF 2012 in Chiang Rai, Thailand with the theme of “20/20 Vision: Building on Two Decades of GMS Cooperation”, MTF 2013 in Guilin, China with the theme ““The Rise of the Chinese traveller: Optimizing the impacts for the GMS”, MTF 2014 in Mandalay, Myanmar with the theme “Tourism investment for the protection of Heritage and Culture”, MTF 2015 in Da Nang, Viet Nam with the theme “Unlocking the GMS via Innovative Partnerships”,and MTF 2016 in Sihanoukville, Cambodia with the theme “Authentic Experiences along the Mekong River.”. MTF 2017 in Luang Prabang, Lao PDR, we focused on the theme “Prosper with Purpose”.Learn More
Hosted by the Ministry of Tourism & Sports of Thailand (MoTS) in Nakhon Phanom at the Mekong River bordering to Laos from June 26-29, will focus on the trend of transformational travel with the theme “Transforming Travel – Transforming Lives”. After inspiring keynotes in the morning, MTF2018 will feature eight topical tracks each in ethnic villages all around Nakhon Phanom. The day prior, we will host the second MIST (Mekong Innovative Startup Tourism) Travel Startup Conference, in partnership with Destination Mekong and the Mekong Business Initiative, supported by ADB, MTCO, and the Australian Government, to support local travel and tourism startups. For the first year, we will feature the Mekong Mini Movie Festival, including the “Film & Destination Marketing Conference”, as well as Film Screening and Awards Ceremony. Optional post-MTF technical tours allow to explore the area around Nakhon Phanom. Don’t miss this year’s Mekong Tourism Forum, a plastic-free event, which is taking delegates into ethnic villages for an immersive and transformational experience. MTF 2019 will be hosted in Yunnan, PR China. Please download the Program at: http://bit.ly/MTF18-DelegateHandbookLearn More
The feeling at the meeting was inspiring and forward thinking. The keynote speakers were exceptional, and it was a rare privilege to have the opportunity to network with them for the entire program. More...
Jo Crisp, General Manager PEAK Cambodia Destination Management Company, Intrepid (Cambodia) Siem Reap, Cambodia March 3, 2017More Testimonials
Topical issues addressed by high quality keynote speeches, well-informed presentations, and interactive forums inspired motivation and dynamic interaction throughout the event. More...
Douglas Hainsworth International Tourism Specialist & ADB Consultant Phnom Penh, Cambodia March 3, 2017More Testimonials
2017 MTF - Luang Prabang, Lao PDR On behalf of Swisscontact I would like to congratulate Jens and the team on a wonderful Mekong Tourism Forum 2017. The MTF 2017 was an excellent opportunity for tourism stakeholders from the public, private, and development sectors to network and discuss the key issues affecting the industry in the Mekong region. The inclusive nature of the forum in utilising venues relevant to the key discussion themes was hugely successful in eliciting engagement from delegates, and we were delighted to have the opportunity to present our destination development model and lead the session on human resource development. Looking forward to 2018!
Richard Rose Deputy Country Director, Swisscontact Cambodia Phnom Penh, Cambodia March 5, 2018More Testimonials
2017 MTF - Luang Prabang, Lao PDR Just wish to extend my thanks and acknowledgement of a excellent 2017 MTF this past week. Well attended, powerful themes and takeaways, and strong connectivity. Feedback from all I spoke to was all positive as noted as one of the best MTF's ever.
Charles Blocker CEO, IC Partners Bangkok, Thailand March 5, 2018More Testimonials
2017 MTF - Luang Prabang, Lao PDR First of all, let me congratulate you two for taking the Mekong Tourism Forum to another level! We were very impressed how the MTF was done professionally with many interesting topics, experienced speakers and contributors who are full with passion and positive energy.
Rangsima Deesawade Regional Coordinator for Southeast Asia, ECPAT Bangkok, Thailand March 5, 2018More Testimonials
2017 MTF - Luang Prabang, Lao PDR The rolling venue format for this year’s MTF was innovative excellent drawing out high levels of interactive discussion and debate locking right on to the hot issues. The networking events were ample and well -spaced allowing for excellent opportunities for active discussions leading to good opportunities in the months ahead.
Kevin Wallace Managing Director Asia Pacific, Dream Hotel Group Bangkok, Thailand March 5, 2018More Testimonials
2017 MTF - Luang Prabang, Lao PDR Being able to discuss the issues of river-based tourism right on a river cruise boat on the Mekong River, made the debate not only so much more relevant and engaging, but also offered delegates to experience tourism products away from the traditional meeting room. We were very pleased to be part of the MTF 2017 hosting community. This new and innovative approach may open up future opportunities for collaboration among the travel industry in Luang Prabang.“
Duanratchada Chimphalee Director of Sales & Marketing, Mekong Cruises Bangkok, Thailand March 5, 2018More Testimonials
2017 MTF - Luang Prabang, Lao PDR While complex from a logistics standpoint, the organizer’s efforts paid off to create one of the most inclusive and experiential tourism conferences yet by making the destination the venue. This is a new benchmark for inclusive conferences. It was marvelous.
Peter Richards Consultant, United Nations International Trade Centre Hua Hin, Thailand March 5, 2018More Testimonials
2017 MTF - Luang Prabang, Lao PDR We avoided using about 5,000 plastic bottles during MTF 2017, which in itself is a great achievement and aligned to our theme 'Prosper with Purpose'.
Dr. Soudaphone Khomthavong Deputy Director of Information, Culture, and Tourism, Luang Prabang Provincial Government March 5, 2018More Testimonials