Jakarta: Sudirman Haseng, the Ambassador of Indonesia to Cambodia, handed over a copy of the Memorandum of Understanding on Indonesia-Cambodia Tourism Cooperation to the Minister of Tourism of Cambodia, Dr. Thong Khon in an official ceremony last week.
This Memorandum of Understanding on Tourism Cooperation has been signed circularly by the Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy of Indonesia, Sandiaga Uno and the Minister of Tourism of Cambodia, Dr. Thong Khon on the sidelines of the ASEAN Tourism Forum in January 2022.
The Minister of Tourism stated that after being hit by the pandemic, Cambodia's tourism condition has started to recover.
Minister Thong Khon stated that by May 2022, around 343,000 foreign tourists had entered Cambodia, which was a drastic increase of 272% compared to the previous year.
Regarding connectivity, the Minister hopes that direct flights from Phnom Penh to Jakarta which have been suspended since 2019 can be resumed soon to support tourism between the two countries.
"We also invite the Indonesian delegation to participate in the Sea Festival again, which will be held in December in Sihanoukville," said the Minister in a press release on Monday.
In his remarks the Indonesian Ambassador stated that this Memorandum of Understanding had brought tourism cooperation between Indonesia and Cambodia to a higher level.
"Immediately after the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding, the Indonesian Embassy in Phnom Penh implemented it through the training in the basics of halal tourism for Cambodian Ministry of Tourism officials. This training will ensure that Cambodia is a friendly tourist destination for Muslim travelers, while for Indonesia it is a means to introduce and market halal products and lifestyles from Indonesia in Cambodia," said the Ambassador.
The Ambassador also inserted a promotion for Indonesia beyond Bali, in the form of a planned screening of the film "Labuan Hati" and coffee cupping from NTT which is expected to attract Cambodians to travel to Indonesia.
The areas of cooperation contained in the Memorandum of Understanding are tourism promotion and marketing, management of tourist destinations, private cooperation, capacity building, cooperation in meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) and events, and connectivity.
Indonesia and Cambodia have several agreements related to tourism. In addition to this Memorandum of Understanding for Tourism Cooperation, there is a Memorandum of Understanding between Apsara Authority and PT Taman Wisata Candi Borobudur, Prambanan, and Ratu Boko regarding the Cooperation of Two World Heritage Sites Management, Borobudur and Angkor, which were signed in 2019. Central Java Province and Siem Reap Province has also signed a Memorandum of Understanding regarding Sister Temple Province Cooperation which has been in effect since 2007.