The practice of creating separate hotel zones cannot attract tourists, but leads to land grabbing, said Vicky Bowman, director of the Myanmar Centre for Responsible Business (MCRB).
MCRB recently released the Tourism Sector-Wide Impact Assessment (SWIA), which intends to support responsible business practices in the booming sector of Myanmar’s economy.
“Tourists are not interested in the hotel zones that are separate from local dwellings,” Daw Thi Thi Thein, sector-wide impact assessment manager of MCRB, told a press conference.
Besides, as the people who foresee hotel zone projects can manipulate real estate prices, causing a skyrocketing of land prices and land grabbing in hotel zone project areas, she added.
“The locals don’t want hotel zones. They want to continue with their work uninterrupted. However, they are often forced to agree to hotel zones. The authorities draw up the plans for each region, with each region containing a hotel zone,” Daw Thi Thi Thein said.
The tourists are more interested in local lives and places of natural beauty, she added.
Most notably, the government took a large amount of land and established the hotel zones in Naypyitaw, but there are currently few tourists and almost no occupancy by locals.
According to MRCB’s Report, the government should implement a framework based on each zone for existing and future tourist attraction areas and make assessments for the impact of the heavy construction projects.
The report also suggests that companies in the tourism industry include the public in the development of tourism sector and implement effective ways to solve complaints and grievances.
Currently, the government is implementing the Tourism Development National Strategy by improving zoning at tourism destinations and will also review the projects. The government also said that it will plan the relevant projects for each zone according to the natural environment and habitats of the region. The government also promises to use SIA to solve and assess the impact of the projects.
According to Hotel and Tourism department, tourism business should not focus only on the profit and should be in line with the conservation of environment, and culture by collaborating with other ASEAN countries.
The Tourism Sector-Wide Impact Assessment is the second SWIA developed by MCRB in partnership with its co-founders, the Danish Institute of Human Rights and the Institute of Human Rights and Business.