Cambodia aims to attract more than 300,000 Japanese tourists a year by 2020, the Minister of Tourism revealed during a festival in the Japanese capital.
Speaking during the Cambodian Festival 2019, held on April 3-4 in Tokyo, Minister Thong Khon said he expects an increase in the number of Japanese nationals visiting the Kingdom as a result of stronger relations between the countries.
“In 2019, we expect to receive 230,000 Japanese tourists,” Minister Khon said. “I firmly believe that the Cambodia Festival 2019 will contribute to the promotion of Cambodian culture, traditions and economic and tourism potential.”
Mr Khon called for more direct flights between Japan and Cambodia, particularly to Siem Reap, home of the Unesco-listed Angkor Archaeological Complex, the country’s top tourist draw.
Last year, 6.2 million foreign tourists visited the Kingdom, a 10.7 percent increase. Of these, 210,000 were Japanese – a 3.5 percent year-on-year hike – making Japan one of Cambodia’s top ten tourism markets.
During the Cambodia Festival 2019, 250 boots displayed Cambodian products, including food items and crafts, attracting an estimated 100,000 visitors.
Kenji Yamada, vice minister of Japan’s Foreign Ministry, said his country aims to boost the number of tourists and investment to the Kingdom.
“Cambodia presents an attractive investment opportunity and has a numerous and young labour force. Japan pledges to further boost the inflow of tourists and investment to Cambodia,” Mr Yamada was quoted as saying in a post in the ministry’s Facebook page.
In 2016, All Nippon Airways (ANA) launched a direct flight between Tokyo’s Narita International Airport and Phnom Penh International Airport.
Masahiro Imamura, chairman of the Japan-Cambodia Parliamentary Friendship Association, said the relationship between the two countries was strengthened following the establishment of the flight.