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Thailand Tourism Council Anticipates 1.4M Foreign Tourist Arrivals

Published: June 30, 2021 at 7:54 pm

Khao San Road

In the best-case scenario, foreign tourist numbers may reach 3 million by the end of the year. Still, the tourism confidence index fell to its lowest level in Q2 as 2 million people lost jobs, as reported by the Tourism Council of Thailand (TCT).

“In addition to quicker immunization for ten trial tourist spots, the main variables affecting visitor volume are Bangkok’s preparedness as Thailand’s aviation hub and if China will permit tourists to travel overseas by October,” TCT vice-president Vichit Prakobgosol explained.

Phuket, Bangkok, Krabi, Buri Ram, Phangnga, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Surat Thani, Phetchaburi, Chiang Mai, and Chon Buri are the areas that have been chosen to reopen for tourists.

TCT developed four tourist industry projections. The best-case scenario anticipates the kingdom welcoming 3 million foreign tourists and earn 212 billion baht once the country’s ten provinces reopen and Chinese tourists resume overseas travel in October. If China prohibits international travel, the amount falls to 2 million, earning 152 billion baht. Nevertheless, Mr. Vichit noted that the most probable scenario is 1.4 million foreign tourists contributing 107 billion baht. He expects China would not extend restrictions on travel because it has to assess its reopening strategy for the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics.

TCT also expressed concern about the vaccine distribution delay in Bangkok, leading the whole kingdom to miss the premier’s mid-October reopening goal. If Bangkok stays closed and tourists from China cannot visit, total foreign visitors may reach 1 million, earning 83 billion baht.

The council’s most recent tourist confidence index fell significantly to 11 from 36 in the 1Q, exceeding the previous low of 12 during the lockdown in the 2Q of 2020. Between May 15 and 30, the index surveyed 725 tourism-related businesses. A value less than 100 shows a lack of confidence.

Approximately 74% of businesses have adequate cash to continue operating for six more months in the present situation without financial assistance. 73% of operators seek small loans of up to 3 million baht to relaunch their businesses.

TCT President Chamnan Srisawat said that the sector’s unemployment surged at 2 million, higher from 1.45 million in the 1Q.   The government’s target of reopening by mid-October should enable the return of some employees in certain areas, he added.

Source: Bangkok Post

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