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Thailand poised to remain favoured tourist destination

PHUKET: Thailand will remain a favoured tourist destination, for varying reasons.

Tourism Authority of Thailand's (TAT) deputy governor for marketing communications Siripakorn Cheawsamoot explained that among them were affordable living costs, attractively priced accommodation, savoury delicacies and cultural hotspots.

"To enhance tourism, we have created a website that provides comprehensive supply-side information for travel and tour agents, the media and the general public.

"Our top three destinations being promoted are Phuket, Chiang Mai and Ko Pha-ngan," he said at the on-going Thailand Travel Mart Plus 2022 (TTM+ 2022) at the Angsana Laguna Phuket.

Additionally, Siripakorn said effective May 10, the Thai Cabinet had approved a Long-term Resident (LTR) Visa for 10 years with a 50,000 baht fee.

"This LTR visa is targeted at retirees, specialists, working foreigners and the wealthy," he said.

The Centre for Economic Situation Administration has also earmarked Phuket, Phang-Nga and Krabi as 'Wellness Tourist World-Class Destinations'.

"More importantly, Thailand will play host to a number of fascinating international events this year," Siripakorn said.

Among them are 'Regenerative Tourism' at the '11th APEC Tourism Ministeral Meeting 2022' in Bangkok on Aug 14-20; the 'Travel Blog Exchange (TBEX) Asia 2022' in Phuket on Nov 15-18; and the Moto Grand Prix at Buri Ram on Sept 30-Oct 22;

Siripakorn pointed out that TTM+ 2022 had attracted 275 tourism package buyers from 42 countries, 264 sellers from within Thailand and 98 journalists.

He said 88 (or 32 per cent) were from Asean, South Asia and the South Pacific region; 85 (or 30.91 per cent) from Europe, Africa and the Middle-East; 80 (or 29.09) from East Asia; and 22 (or 8 per cent) from the Americas.

"A total of 1.34 million tourists visited Thailand for the first five months this year, as against 427,869 visitors for the while of last year owing to the global Covid-19 pandemic restrictions.

"Over the next two years, we target 1.5 trillion baht, comprising 882 billion baht from 10 million international tourists and 625 billion baht from the domestic market.

"We expect half a million tourist arrivals monthly from June to September this year, and one million monthly visitors from October to December.

"By next year, we estimate 20 million international visitors, generating 2.4 trillion baht in revenue.

"While for 2024, we forsee a revenue of 3 trillion baht from 36 per cent Thai tourists and 64 per cent foreigners," Siripakorn said.

He added that Thailand's tourism initiatives were based upon the bio-circular-green (BCG) economy, utilising digital and responsible tourism to drive sustainability.

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