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Yangon struggles with major room shortage


As tourist arrivals to Myanmar rise, hotel rooms are strained

It’s not easy being the year’s hottest destination. As Myanmar quickly becomes one of Asia’s most demanded destinations, hotel capacity has become seriously strained – and will be for at least the next two years. Yangon (Rangoon), the country’s former capital and biggest city, expects 600,000 tourists for 2012 and 900,000 in 2013. But only 1700 additional rooms are planned in the city for in 2013. Yangon currently has 8319 hotel and guesthouse rooms and only a third of these are of international standard. Rates have more than doubled in 2012.
“We definitely do not have enough hotel rooms for travellers at the moment,” one official says. “That is why we are seriously looking at how to encourage hotel investment.” A new law on foreign investment is due but has been much delayed.
[pictured: Southern Gate of Shwe Dagon Pagoda, Yangon]


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