Vietnam Time

3/29/2019 9:46:52 AM

North Korea woos Vietnam tourists after Hanoi summit

North Korean tourism officials on Thursday (Mar 28) urged Vietnamese travellers to seize a "golden" opportunity to visit the country following a summit between Kim Jong Un and US President Donald Trump in Hanoi last month.

A North Korean tourism official said it is prime time for Vietnamese visitors to travel to the country after Hanoi hosted Trump and Kim for a second round of nuclear talks in February.

"We had a very successful summit in Hanoi ... this is the right chance, the golden chance for us to generate a tourist market of Vietnam to DPRK," Ham Jin of the official Korea International Travel Company (KITC) told AFP Thursday.

His company hosted a booth at a tourism fair in Hanoi this week - with brochures advertising a dolphinarium, a science and technology complex and the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum in "ever-changing" Pyongyang - while others urged skiers to pay a visit to the Masikryong mountain resort.

Kim paid an official visit to Hanoi after his meeting with Trump, piquing curiosity among some Vietnamese eager to know more about the reclusive leader and his country.

"I want to discover this mysterious country because there are many things to see," said Do Thi Phuong Thuy, who signed up for a tour after Kim's trip.


The Wonsan-Kalma Coastal Tourist Area is under construction

North Korea receives an estimated 100,000 foreign tourists a year, according to industry insiders.

Ham put the number at double that and said visitor numbers grew by as much as 50 per cent last year.

"We (use) tourism to contribute to economic development," he told AFP.

A Vietnamese tour operator at the fair said his client numbers have surged this year.

Trump has heralded North Korea's economic potential, praising its "great beaches" that he said would make ideal locations for condos.

North Korea is currently building a sprawling seaside resort known as the Wonsan-Kalma Coastal Tourist Area in a zone that has previously been used for artillery drills and ballistic missile launches.

Complied by VNF  ( AFP )
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