The MIST scheme, part of the “Mekong Innovative Startups in Tourism” programme, is being jointly run by the Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO), six member governments of the Greater Mekong Sub-region (GMS), along with partners in the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Seedstars, a Swiss-based ecosystem builder.
Jens Thraenhart, executive director of the Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office and Chair of Destination Mekong, underscored the importance of encouraging the development of innovative idea as it helps the tourism industry to rise to challenges caused by changing needs, particularly during the period of the COVID-19 pandemic.
He also stated the need to maintain the powerful MIST brand, with a specific target to launching creative projects and concepts which drive sustainability and resilience, helping to recover tourism in the GMS.
During the first quarter of 2021, MIST is set to invite nominations from startups, companies, governmental organisations, NGOs, academia, media, as well as individuals, students, and partnerships from six member countries of the GMS region, namely Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, and China.
Nominations will be accepted from February 1 to April 31, 2021 at www.MIST.asia, whilst existing MIST nominations are to be considered based on the new criteria.
The MIST jury is to be made up of members of the Mekong Tourism Advisory Group (MeTAG – https://www.destinationmekong.com/mekong-tourism-advisory-group/) and Seedstars. This group will ultimately judge the final pitches during a hybrid MIST Forum planned to take place during the second half of the year in Bangkok.