Thai Tourism Sector Poised for Greater Growth on a Strong and Stable Platform
The TAT's long-term strategic plan aims to develop Thai tourism in a way that promotes sustainable growth. The TAT has a long and successful track record of strengthening Thailand’s position as a leading destination for international tourists and will continue to implement its tourism roadmap as planned with the full support of the new government.
“Confidence in Thailand as a safe and enjoyable destination is a key underlying factor for the tourism industry. The peaceful election in early July and the smooth transition to the new government greatly reinforces Thailand's image among potential visitors. Thai tourism has enjoyed solid performance over the last twelve months and we see indications of increased growth as we move towards the year-end high season," said TAT Governor Suraphon Svetasreni.
As of the end of July 2011, Thailand had recorded 11.2 million tourist arrivals, compared to 8.8 million for the same period last year. This represents a 26.5% increase year-on-year. TAT expects this consistent growth will continue for the rest of 2011. Given that there are no further global or local crises, there is a tendency that we will be able to reach 18.5 million visitors with expected income of 23 billion US dollars.
“In July 2011 alone, when the Amazing Thailand Grand Sale was on, we saw over 50% growth in tourist arrivals from China, Russia, Spain, Taiwan and Vietnam. Overall growth for the entire month was about 19%. The second quarter is traditionally the low season for Thai tourism. Things pick up in the third quarter and peak in the fourth quarter of the year. The strong numbers for July indicate that arrivals for the remainder of the year may be trending upwards earlier than expected,” added Mr Suraphon.
For 2012, an anticipated 19.5 million international tourist arrivals will generate approximately 760 billion Baht (25 billion USD) in revenue. The TAT will continue to use the “Amazing Thailand Always Amazes You” theme to promote travel activities.
The TAT is also promoting tourism for both local and overseas markets to balance its growth momentum. Upcoming events include the Bangkok International Festival of Dance and Music, Thailand's largest annual performing arts event. Now in its 13th year, it will take place from September 9 until October 16, 2011. The Royal Flora Ratchaphruek 2011, an international horticulture exposition, will highlight the theme “Reducing global warming to save planet earth and to improve the quality of life” during its 99-day run in Chiang Mai starting from November 9, 2011. One of the year's grandest events, the Royal Barge Procession, takes place on October 22, 2011. Over 2,200 sailors will power a flotilla of 52 traditional-style barges, including four major royal barges, along the Chao Phraya river through central Bangkok.
"While we must face the challenges of a changing world, Thailand's renewed stability makes the Kingdom, already a favourite destination of travellers from all over the globe, more appealing than ever.
With a new government's strong support for tourism policies and the collaboration of stakeholders throughout the industry, Thailand's tourism sector looks very promising,” concluded Governor Suraphon.”