Jens Thraenhart was appointed by the six tourism ministries of Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Viet Nam, and China (Yunnan and Guanxi Provinces) to head the Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO) as its Executive Director. The Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO) is an inter-governmental body to promote the Mekong region as a single tourism destination, and foster responsible tourism development in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS). In his tenure, he digitized the organized the organization, and as a result the website MekongTourism.org was recognised with three prestigious awards for innovation and design. He created the public-private partnership framework Destination Mekong, which operates various initiatives, including the collaborative social commerce platform Mekong Moments, the Experience Mekong Collection curating responsible travel experiences, and the Mekong Innovative Startups in Tourism (MIST) accelerator program. In 2009, he co-founded award-winning China digital marketing and social media agency Dragon Trail, based in Beijing/PR China, helping companies all over the world to reach affluent Chinese consumers. Prior he has led marketing, CRM, and digital strategy teams at the Canadian Tourism Commission based in Vancouver/Canada, and at Fairmont Hotels & Resorts based in Toronto/Canada. In 1999, he founded his consulting firm Chameleon Strategies based in Hong Kong and Vancouver, a UNWTO Affiliate Member, where he has personally assisted many global companies. In 2016, Chameleon Strategies moved its main office to Bangkok/Thailand, offering services from strategic consulting, social technology development, and creative design. Educated at Cornell University with a Masters of Management in Hospitality, Mr. Thraenhart was recognized as one of the travel industry’s top 100 rising stars by Travel Agent Magazine in 2003, was listed as one of HSMAI’s 25 Most Extraordinary Sales and Marketing Minds in Hospitality and Travel in 2004 and 2005, and named as one of the Top 20 Extraordinary Minds in European Travel and Hospitality in 2014. A member of the UNWTO Global Panel of Experts, and PATA Board Member, he also served as past executive global board member of HSMAI (Hospitality Sales Marketing Association International), and past Chair of PATA China. A dual citizen of Germany and Canada, he now lives in Bangkok/Thailand.
29 June 2018 | 10:00 - 12:00 | R PHOTO HOTEL
The Mekong Tourism Advisory Group is open to active and passionate travel and tourism professionals from public and private sectors, active in the Greater Mekong Subregion. The agenda of the MTF 2018 MeTAG Meeting will consist of: • Review and feedback of 2018 Mekong Tourism Forum • Ideas for 2019 Mekong Tourism Forum in PR China • Experience Mekong Collection & Showcases • Mekong Moments • Mekong Mini Movie Festival • Mekong Trends Report on Responsible Tourism • Future Mekong Trends Reports • Mekong Tourism Special Interest Groups • Discussions about other potential projects • Funding for projects, executed by Destination Mekong Please send an email to jens at mekongtourism.org if you are interested in joining the MeTAG Meeting. Due to limited space, RSVP is very much appreciated. Active and constructive participation is desired.
26 June 2018 | 13:30 - 18:00 | NAKHON PHANOM UNIVERSITY - SRIKOTRABOON CONFERENCE CENTER (3RD FLOOR)
Film has inspired millions to visit destinations. Learn from experts about the power of movie productions to user-generated videos and how they can be integrated into destination marketing. FILM CONFERENCE START TIME END TIME TOPIC 13:30 13:40 Emcee Joe Cummings – Editor, Talisman Media 13:40 13:50 Opening H.E. Mr. Pongpanu Svetarundra – Permanent Secretary, Thailand Ministry of Tourism and Sports 13:50 14:05 Promoting Destinations via Film Mr. Jens Thraenhart – Executive Director, Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office 14:05 14:25 Power of Visual Storytelling – Part 1 Mr. Rob Holmes – CEO, GLP Films (USA) 14:25 14:55 Competing for Movie Productions Ms. Sirinart Theenanondh – Chief of Film Business Promotion, Thailand Department of Tourism 14:55 15:15 Promoting Thailand via Visual Storytelling Ms. Titiporn Manenate – Director International Advertising, Tourism Authority of Thailand 15:15 15:35 Case Study: Hangover 2 – Lebua Hotel Bangkok Mr. Deepak Ohri – CEO, Lebua Hotels & Resorts 15:35 15:45 BREAK 15:45 16:05 Power of Visual Storytelling – Part 2 Mr. Vincent Sung – Journalist 16:05 16:25 Promoting Responsible Tourism via Visual Storytelling Mr.Gopinath Parayil – CEO & Founder – The Blue Yonder (India) 16:25 16:45 Video Bloggers promoting Destinations Mr. Polkrit Thomya – Producer, Hey ASEAN! 16:45 17:10 BREAK 17:10 17:30 Leveraging User-generated video content Mr. Gerrit Kruger – Managing Director, Chameleon Strategies 17:30 17:50 Promoting the Mekong Region via Visual Storytelling Mr. Jens Thraenhart – Executive Director, Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office 17:50 18:00 Closing Mr. Joe Cummings – Editor, Talisman Media
26 June 2018 | 18:00 - 18:30 | NAKHON PHANOM UNIVERSITY - SRIKOTRABOON CONFERENCE CENTER (3RD FLOOR)
Get inspired by the finalist mini movies in the first Mekong Mini Movie Festival, and vote for your favourite nomination per country to determine the country winners. Be part of making history and get engaged!
27 June 2018 | 09:00 - 12:00 | NAKHON PHANOM UNIVERSITY - RAMA RAJ ROOM
Witness the MIST Showcase, where some of the most promising travel and hospitality startups will share their innovations with the Mekong tourism industry. 9:00 Welcome and Opening Remarks Jens Thraenhart, Executive Director, Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office Steven Schipani, Senior Portfolio Management Specialist, Asian Development Bank 9:15 Innovation Showcase Five early-stage startups will deliver 10-minute presentations about their business models and technology. Each presentation will include up to 5 additional minutes for questions and answers. 10:30 Tea Break 10:45 Innovation Showcase Three travel innovators will deliver 10-minute presentations about their business models and technology. Each presentation will include up to 5 additional minutes for questions and answers. 11:30 Structured Networking Meet the innovators! Our eight MIST innovators will be stationed at tables around the room. Meet them, interact with them, and schedule appointments for follow up. 5 finalists from Startup Accelerator They previously attended a boot camp May 17-22 in Ho Chi Minh City, where they competed against 14 other startups to join the program. • BambooLao (Lao PDR) produces reusable bamboo straws to replace single-use plastic straws. • VDEs – tìm kiếm địa điểm tổ chức tiệc cưới (Viet Nam) connects event planners with event venues and makes them bookable through their database. • Go Explore Vietnam (Viet Nam) organizes “workation” programs aimed at international and domestic remote workers. • SidesBag (Cambodia) is a mobile application enabling airline passengers to purchase available luggage allowance from fellow travelers. • Ecohost Vietnam (Viet Nam) improves the local homestay experience, improving the management of homestays and local activities while making them easier to book. 5 international travel and hospitality innovators for Market Access track. The MIST Market Access program invites innovators from around the world to solve tourism and hospitality industry challenges in the Greater Mekong Subregion. • Adventoro offers bucket-list worthy activities including whitewater rafting, jungle treks and diving excursions. Currently serving Malaysia, Adventoro will use the MIST Market Access Program to enter Viet Nam. • DidaTravel Technology, based in China, offers backend technology for hotel booking, providing real-time inventory and rates. • Moneybay provides a digital cross-border currency exchange platform. The Malaysian fintech makes it simple for tourist to make payments online and collect currency from a local partner. • Monkey Theory creates fun and happy experiences with branded sporting events – encouraging public health and social activity. • hereO, creator of the hero GPS watch for kids, offers plug-and-play IoT technology. It is considering IoT solutions for last-mile tourist transportation in the Greater Mekong Subregion.
27 June 2018 | 13:30 - 15:30 | NAKHON PHANOM UNIVERSITY - SRIKOTRABOON CONFERENCE CENTER (3RD FLOOR)
The Mekong Tourism Forum 2018 Official Opening Ceremony, presided by the Vice Minister of Tourism & Sports of Thailand and the Governor of Nakhon Phanom Province will celebrate successful tourism collaboration in the GMS. Opening Remarks H.E. Mr. Itthiphol Kunplome Ministry of Tourism & Sports Thailand Vice Minister Opening Remarks H.E. Mr. Somchai Vitdamrong Nakhon Phanom Province Governor Opening Remarks Mr. Steven Schipani Asian Development Bank Senior Portfolio Specialist Opening Remarks Mr. Jens Thraenhart Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office Executive Director
27 June 2018 | 15:30 - 16:00 | NAKHON PHANOM UNIVERSITY - RAMA RAJ ROOM
27 June 2018 | 16:00 - 18:30 | NAKHON PHANOM UNIVERSITY - SRIKOTRABOON CONFERENCE CENTER (3RD FLOOR)
On Wednesday afternoon, discussions ranging from Buddhist Tourism to Responsible Tourism focus on the potential of transforming travel and people’s lives. 16:00 16:10 Emcee – Opening Dr. Jutamas Wisansing – CEO, Perfect Link Consulting 16:10 16:30 Transforming Travel Keynote Mr. Jeremy Smith – Author, “Transforming Travel” 16:30 16:55 A Day in a Buddhist Temple Malao StudiosThe Buddhist Circuits of Southeast AsiaMr. Lim Kooi Fong – Founder, BuddhistTravel.com 16:55 17:30 Panel: Buddhist Tourism in the Mekong Region Moderator: Mr. Imtiaz Muqbil, Editor – Travel Impact Newswire Panelists: Mr. Lim Kooi Fong – Founder, BuddhistTravel.com Mr. Malraj Kiriella – Former CEO, Sri Lanka Tourism Dr. Kanokrot Phalakornkul – Editor, 5000s Magazine Mr. Somchai Vitdamrong – Governor, Nakhon Phanom Provincial Government 17:30 17:45 Child Welfare in Tourism Guide Mr. James Sutherland – Communications Manager, Friends International 17:45 18:00 Mekong Trends Report on Responsible Tourism Mr. Jens Thraenhart – Executive Director, Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office 18:00 18:30 Panel: Experience Mekong Collection Showcases Moderator: Dr. Walanchalee Wattanacharoensil – Professor, Mahidol University International College Panelists: Ms. Momoko Ikeuchi – Sales Manager, Phare Circus (Cambodia) Mr. Somsak Boonkam – CEO & Founder, LocalAlike (Thailand) Ms. Phitsamai Sipaza – Assistant Manager, Ock Pop Tok Living Arts Center (Laos) Ms. Yin Myo Su – CEO & Founder, Inle Heritage (Myanmar) Mr. Zhu Jinsheng (Jason) – Deputy Party Secretary, Guilin Tourism University (Representing: Longji Rice Terraces, Guangxi, PR China) Closing Dr. Jutamas Wisansing – CEO, Perfect Link Consulting
28 June 2018 | 08:30 - 11:30 | NAKHON PHANOM UNIVERSITY - SRIKOTRABOON CONFERENCE CENTER (3RD FLOOR)
Mekong Tourism Forum 2018, focused on the theme “Transforming Travel – Mekong Tourism Forum 2018, focused on the theme “Transforming Travel – Transforming Lives” will bring together inspiring speakers from various sectors of the industry to tackle the topic from different sides. Open your eyes and minds how travel is being transformed in these very exciting times. For the second time, we have our “Mekong Opportunities & Threats” session, this year focused on the issue of Plastic Pollution in the Greater Mekong Subregion and Southeast Asia. START TIME END TIME TOPIC 08:30 08:45 PERFORMANCE 08:45 09:00 OPENING REMARKS Mr. Jens Thraenhart – Executive Director, MTCO 09:00 09:15 MTF 2018/2019 FLAG HANDOVER (FROM THAILAND TO P.R. CHINA / YUNNAN) Remarks from MTF 2019 Host 09:20 09:35 KEYNOTE 1 – SHARING ECONOMY Ms. Mich Goh – Head of Public Policy SEA, AirBnB 09:40 09:55 KEYNOTE 2 – HUMAN CAPITAL Ms. Yin Myo Su – CEO, Inle Heritage 09:55 10:15 BREAK 10:15 10:30 MEKONG OPPORTUNITIES & THREATS – PLASTIC POLLUTION KEYNOTE: Mr. Jeremy Smith – Author, Transforming Travel 10:30 11:00 MEKONG OPPORTUNITIES & THREATS – PLASTIC POLLUTION (INITIATIVES FROM THE REGION) Moderator: Ms. Gili Back – Sustainability Manager, Khiri Travel 11:00 11:30 MEKONG OPPORTUNITIES & THREATS – PLASTIC POLLUTION (OPEN FORUM & LAUNCH OF PLASTIC FREE PLEDGE)