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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs    17 July 2012

Thai Tourism looking at Asean to offset slump from Euro


Electronics, jewellery, and garments are among the major Thai export industries currently hit by the euro-zone crisis, but the growing Asean and other new markets would help cushion the negative impact, according to Thailand's deputy premier and Finance Minister Kittiratt Na-Ranong.

He said the euro-zone situation had stabilised as key players were taking action to solve the problems.

Besides the export sectors, the country's tourism industry has also been hit by the euro-zone crisis with tourist arrivals down 6-7 per cent in the past months when compared with the same period last year.

Tourism and Sports Minister Chumpol Silapa-archa said tourist arrivals for the whole year should still meet the target of 20 million as there will be more visitors from Asia, especially China, Japan and Korea.

Suraphol Sawet-senee, governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), said the agency's target is to boost annual tourism revenue to 2 trillion baht (US$63.15 billion) in 2015, nearly doubling from 1.1 trillion baht ($34.73 billion) recorded last year.

He said Russia, China, Korea and Australia are priority markets for Thailand as they still enjoy strong economic growth rates.

In addition, TAT has focussed on special interest groups such as golf tourism, spa tourism, honeymoon tourism and shopping tourism.

He said the agency would also implement measures to attract higher-income tourists, especially those in the middle and high-income groups.

For example, the ratio of high-income visitors will be raised to 25 per cent of the total, up from the present 18 per cent in the next 2-3 years.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More


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