Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Nguyen Ngoc Thien, announced Wednesday a decision to appoint Greg Norman as Vietnam Tourism Ambassador for the next 3 years (2019-2021).
Norman’s nomination by a media organization was accepted by the ministry, acknowledging his outstanding achievements and contributions to Vietnam.
Since 2006, Greg Norman had designed three golf courses in the country and continues to contribute to a number of other projects.
Minister Thien said that the Australian’s popularity and experience in many fields, including sports and business, can help further develop golf tourism in Vietnam.
Norman has presented promotion plans for Vietnam’s tourism for the next three years.
His main focus will be on promoting golf tourism domestically and internationally through activities like organizing international competitions and building new high class golf courses in unique locations.
Norman has said that over the 40 years he’s been involved with professional golf, he has never seen the sport booming anywhere as fast as in Vietnam.
In 2017, among the 15 million international visitors, half a million had come to Vietnam to play golf.
“My responsibility is to promote Vietnam tourism to the world through this sport,” he said.
Australian Ambassador Craig Chittick said Norman was a most deserving representative for the tourism ambassador position.
Greg Norman is a brand name not just in Australia, but the world over. Australia is a big market for Vietnam and Norman will contribute to attracting more visitors, Chittick said.
According the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT), the country welcomed 12.8 million international visitors in the first ten months of the year, up 22.4 per cent year-on-year.
Visitors from almost all markets increased, with those from South Korea increasing 48 percent; Finland, 33 percent; Hong Kong, 30 percent; China, 29 percent; Denmark, over 16 percent; and Taiwan, nearly 15 percent. The number of visitors from Africa, relatively small, also increased by nearly 20 percent.
Nguyen Van Tuan, head of VNAT, said the goal for Vietnam’s tourism this year is to receive about 15-16 million international visitors.
The last three months are the peak season for international visitors. If the current growth rate is maintained, Vietnam will be able to achieve this target, he said.