JOINT MEDIA STATEMENT

The Third Meeting of the ASEAN, China, Japan and Korea Tourism Ministers (M-ATM+3) was held on 3 February 2004 in Vientiane, Lao PDR in conjunction with the Seventh Meeting of the ASEAN Tourism Ministers and the ASEAN Tourism Forum 2004 (ATF 2004). H.E. Somphong Mongkhonvilay, Minister to the Prime Minister’s Office and Chairman of the Lao National Tourism Authority, chaired the Meeting.

The Ministers expressed their support for the implementation of decisions of the ASEAN+3 Summit to further boost the tourism industry, encouraging expansion of tourism between ASEAN and China, Japan and Korea.
The Ministers exchanged views on the global tourism situation and recent tourism developments in ASEAN and China, Japan and Korea.  They expressed satisfaction with fruitful cooperation in 2003 in combating the outbreak of SARS and terrorism. They agreed to continue their efforts in preventing the SARS and other communicable diseases.

The Ministers were pleased to note recent trends in the tourist arrivals between ASEAN with China, Japan, and Korea, which reached 20 per cent of international tourist arrivals in ASEAN in 2003.   They underlined the importance of continuing regional tourism cooperation in the ASEAN +3 framework as a means to foster greater tourism exchange, social interaction and closer economic cohesion in East Asia.

The Ministers reviewed the progress made and endorsed the recommendations of the ASEAN, China, Japan and Korea National Tourism Organisations (NTOs) to intensify cooperation, among others, in Joint Promotion and Marketing; Tourism Investment; and Manpower Development. The Ministers welcomed offer by China to host a workshop in May 2004 in Shanghai; effective cooperation programs through ASEAN-Japan Centre and a strong commitment of Korea to further enhance cooperation with ASEAN.

The Ministers agreed to intensify the work for well-coordinated and effective mechanisms of information exchange through ASEAN + 3 Communication Team for Tourism to effectively deal with any possible contingencies such as political turmoil, terrorist activities, economic crisis, natural disasters and public health. They agreed to give their full support to strengthening the early warning system to deal with and prevent the spread of SARS and other communicable diseases.

LIST OF MINISTERS
The Meeting was attended by:
H.E. Pehin Dato Abdul Rahman Taib, Minister of Industry and Primary Resources, Brunei Darussalam;
H.E. Mr. Veng Sereyvuth, Senior Minister and Minister of Tourism, Cambodia;
H.E. Mr. I Gede Ardika, Minister of Culture and Tourism, Indonesia;
H.E. Mr. Somphong Mongkhonvilay, Minister to the Prime Minister’s Office, Chairman of Lao National Tourism Authority , Lao PDR
H.E. Dato’ Paduka Abdul Kadir bin Haji Sheikh Fadzir, Minister of Culture, Arts and Tourism, Malaysia;
H.E. Brigadier General Thein Zaw, Minister for Ministry of Hotels and Tourism, Myanmar;
H.E. Mr. Oscar P. Palabyab, Undersecretary of Tourism, Philippines;
H.E. Dr. Vivian Balakrishnan, Minister of State for Trade and Industry, Singapore;
H.E. Mr. Sontaya Kunplome, Minister of Tourism and Sports, Thailand;
H.E. Dr. Pham Tu, Vice-Chairman of Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, Vietnam;
H.E. Mr. Ong Keng Yong, Secretary-General of ASEAN.
H.E. Mr. Zhang Xiqin, Vice Chairman of the National Tourism Administration, China.
H.E. Mr. Hayao Hora, Vice-Minister for International Affairs, Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport, Japan; and
H.E. Mr. Shin Hyun Taek, Deputy Minister of Culture and Tourism, Korea.