The Irrawaddy

Chin State to Develop Tourism

Viewpoint in Chin State’s Hakha. (Photo: Ko Soe/The Irrawaddy)

YANGON — A three-year project will be implemented for the development of tourism in Chin State with the assistance of the Dutch government, said the trade promotion department under the Ministry of Commerce.

“We’ve tentatively selected Chin State for the project. But, a final decision has not been made. We have also surveyed some other states [for the project]. Chin State has the potential for development. But, we have yet to improve transportation there,” said director-general U Aung Soe of the trade promotion department.

The project will be jointly implemented by the Netherlands Center for the Promotion of Imports from developing countries (CBI), Ministry of Hotels and Tourism, and Ministry of Commerce of Myanmar. CBI will open an office and provide financial and technical support for three years.

“This year, we expect a minimum 50 percent increase in the number of foreign visitors and a 60 percent increase in local visitors compared to 2017,” said official U Aung Phyo of the Chin State hotels and tourism ministry.

A three-year US$1.9 million tourism development project was implemented in Karenni State with the assistance of the Dutch government from 2014 to 2017.

Well-known tourist attractions in Chin State include heart-shaped Reh Lake, which lies on a hill at an altitude of 2,966 feet in Reh Khaw Da in Falam Township near the Myanmar-India border.

Nat Ma Taung (also called Mount Victoria or Khaw-Nu-Soum), the highest mountain in Chin State, is also a popular tourist destination. Chin State is also known for its Rhododendron flowers, which bloom in December and January.

The Chin State government in February imposed a ban on picking Rhododendron flowers and hunting wildlife across the state.

In 2017, Chin State received 11,047 local visitors and 2,495 foreign visitors, most of them French.

The tourism industry is one of the economic priorities of the Chin State government, said U Aung Phyo, adding that the government has been developing tourist destinations in the state, along with organizing training in hotels and tourism and helping to form hotelier and tour guide associations.

Translated from Burmese by Thet Ko Ko.