MYANMAR’S Ministry of Hotels and Tourism has, from July 1, launched an online registration portal (http://elicence.tourism.gov.mm) to facilitate permit applications and renewals for the travel and hospitality industry.
At present, the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism issues four kinds of licences: a hotel licence costs between 200,000 kyat (US$170) and 1.9 million kyat, based on the number of rooms; a tour company licence costs 400,000 kyat; a tour guide licence costs 50,000 kyat; and a licence to provide transportation for tourists costs between 50,000 kyat and 500,000 kyat, depending on the vehicle type.
Licence holders must renew every two years, according to Thint Thwin, director general of the ministry’s Directorate of Hotels and Tourism.
Welcoming the time and hassle saved with the introduction of the online system, Kaung Minn Khant, managing director of Yangon-based Asia Central Link Travel and Tour Company, said: “Previously, we had to apply at related departments both in Yangon and Nay Pyi Taw. It was extremely time-consuming with lots of paperwork that caused delay in issuing licences.”
He also urged the ministry to focus on the flexibility of issuing e-visa for visitors, developing more products in secondary destinations in the country and providing accurate statistics for the travel trade.
Meanwhile, Thint Thwin revealed that information cards for tourists will be rolled out soon, as the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism is currently negotiating with Myanmar Posts and Telecommunications, and telco operators Ooredoo, Telenor and Viettel to provide the system electronically.
These cards will provide visitors with data about Myanmar’s tourism industry such as airline schedules, bus and transportation options, restaurants plus other travel advices.