Skills standard for SE Asia tourism professionals set to launch

Arief Yahya, Indonesia’s minister of tourism

ASEAN ministers and travel industry stakeholders will be unveiling a framework for the standardisation and benchmarking of skills of tourism professionals at the Mutual Recognition Arrangement for Tourism Professionals (MRA-TP) conference set to take place in Jakarta from August 8-9.

The conference is being organised by the Indonesian Ministry of Tourism with an aim to boost service standards and encourage intra-ASEAN mobility among tourism employees.

So far, 32 job profiles in the tourism and hospitality sectors have been identified for benchmarking, including those working in hotel front office, housekeeping, F&B services, tour operations, food production and travel agencies.

Arief Yahya, Indonesia’s minister of tourism, said: “The fulfilment of the MRA-TP initiative will boost the quality of services, as it will create mobile, trained and confident skilled-labour suited to travel industry needs.”

In 2002, ASEAN leaders agreed to upgrade tourism education curricula and skills as well as formulate competency standards and certification agreements that will be mutually recognised across the region.

Now, with 32 job types benchmarked, 52 qualifications initiated and 242 training ‘toolboxes’ created, and with trainers and skill assessors hired and registered, the MRA-TP process is ready to be formally ratified in Jakarta.

Registration for the conference is open.

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