Vietnam Aviation Business Association has suggested opening more direct routes to countries sending a large number of tourists to Vietnam to boost post-pandemic recovery.
Pham Viet Dung, chairman of the association, said domestic aviation has fully recovered to pre-pandemic levels while the international market is struggling.
People perform check-in procedures at Noi Bai Airport in Hanoi, June 2022.
Many countries that used to send large numbers of foreign visitors to Vietnam are still cautious in reopening their borders, resulting in the slow recovery of international routes, he said at a meeting with Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh on Thursday.
China, South Korea and Japan were the biggest tourist sources for Vietnam before the pandemic.
During the first seven months this year, South Korea sent the largest number of visitors to Vietnam, 196,000, followed by the U.S. (102,900), Cambodia (60,400), China (53,000) and Singapore (50,500), according to the General Statistics Office.
Vietnamese airlines have resumed flights on only 40 percent of pre-pandemic international routes since January as the country reopened international aviation, according to the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam.
In addition to the launch of new international routes, Dung petitioned the government to accelerate the development of aviation infrastructure and increase tourism campaigns to attract the return of foreign arrivals.
The government has allowed quarantine-free entry and resumed its pre-pandemic visa exemption policy for 24 tourism markets from mid-March to seek tourism recovery after two years of border closures.