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September 27, 2023

PATA and Visa’s Finance and Digital Skills Workshops for Tourism SMEs Commences in Southeast Asia

PATA and Visa's Finance and Digital Skills Workshops

The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) is delighted to announce the start of a series of workshops in Southeast Asia to increase the financial literacy and digital skills of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in tourism in Cambodia, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Vietnam. These workshops are part of PATA’s collaboration with Visa to build the capacity of informal workers and tourism businesses in the region.

The workshops consist of two sessions, the first on Finance Skills and the second on Digital Skills, in four destinations:

Hanoi, Vietnam, on July 20-21;
Jakarta, Indonesia, on July 26-27;
Siem Reap, Cambodia, on August 10-11; and
Pagsanjan, Philippines, on September 11-12.

On July 20th and 21st, the PATA team and the Viet Nam National Authority of Tourism (VNAT) were in Hanoi to launch the start of the programme in Vietnam. The training took place in the Old Town of Hanoi and was attended by 23 participants, which included directors and managers of local tour operators, travel agencies, hotels, restaurants, and visitor attractions.

The Finance Skills workshop was led by Le Nguyen Ngoc Thanh, Lecturer in Business and Marketing Management and Tourism and Hospitality Management at Ho Chi Minh City University of Economics and Finance, Ton Duc Thang University and RMIT University Vietnam. Ms Thanh covered the topics of budgeting and saving, measuring cash flow, profit and loss, and saving costs with sustainability through presentations and group activities, such as calculations practices on business expenses and cash flow.

On the second day, participating SMEs learned the important topic of how to increase digitalisation in their business operations and marketing strategies. Dr Trang Huong Pham, Lecturer in Tourism and Hospitality Management at RMIT University Vietnam, presented useful technologies and applications for SMEs, the basics of digital marketing, how to build a landing page, and how to use and benefit from social media channels. Participants practised the contents learned through group discussions to share insights and brainstorm digital solutions for their businesses.

PATA Chair Peter Semone said, “Following the recent launch of the online course for Finance and Digital Skills for Tourism SMEs on PATA’s Sustainability Resource Centre (SRC) website, we are excited to take this online content and knowledge directly to tourism stakeholders in person onsite. It is also great to work with the same destinations from our previous Tourism Destination Resilience capacity building programme to continue building the resilience of these destinations and their tourism stakeholders.”

Patsian Low, V.P, Inclusive Impact & Sustainability, Asia Pacific, Visa
Patsian Low, V.P, Inclusive Impact & Sustainability, Asia Pacific, Visa

According to Patsian Low, Vice President of Inclusive Impact & Sustainability for Asia Pacific at Visa, “We’re excited to see Visa’s Practical Business Skills program come to life through the commencement of in-person workshops for tourism SMEs in Southeast Asia, in partnership with PATA. These interactive workshops are tailored to the specific needs of tourism workers, and will provide SMEs essential digital financial skills to enable them to begin accepting digital payments.”

On July 26th and 27th, the PATA team and the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy of the Republic of Indonesia attended the workshops in Jakarta, and this week the capacity building programme will continue in Siem Reap with the support of the Ministry of Tourism of Cambodia.

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