Bank of Thailand predicts 28 million foreign tourists this year
The Bank of Thailand (BoT) predicts that the Land of Smiles will see 28 million tourists this year. The BoT’s governor, Sethaput Suthiwartnarueput, said the BoT expects a 3.6% expansion in the gross domestic product (GDP) for this year.
The BoT predicts a GDP growth of 2.9% in the first half of this year from the same period last year, with exports expected to decrease by 7.1% year-on-year.
The BoT forecasts a 4.3% economic growth in the second half of this year, primarily due to an increase in foreign arrivals and private consumption.
Additionally, the BoT expects a rebound of 42% in the second half of this year, Pattaya Mail reported.
Ever since Thailand eased its Covid-19 restrictions, the country has been welcoming back tourists from across the globe.
According to DidaTravel, a tech-driven global travel distribution company, Chinese travellers are eager to explore the world and bookings for trips abroad are recovering fast. The upcoming May Day holiday, which runs from April 29 until May 3 and sees many people in China taking five days off, is expected to see a significant surge in international travel. Recent data shows that Chinese travellers’ international hotel bookings have increased 30-fold year on year (YOY), surpassing pre-pandemic 2019 volumes by 18%
Meanwhile, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is pushing for 150,000 Saudi tourists this year. There has been a significant increase in the number of Saudi visitors to the Land of Smiles over the years. In 2015, Thailand welcomed 25,153 Saudi tourists, while in 2016 and 2017, the numbers increased to 33,038 and 42,610 respectively.
TAT is also expecting to welcome six million tourists from Europe this year, generating over 420 billion baht in revenue. The figure represents approximately 80% of pre-pandemic levels. The TAT estimates a total tourism revenue for Thailand of 1.5 trillion baht for 2023. Last month, TAT’s Deputy Governor for Europe, Africa, the Middle East and the Americas reported that long-haul flight applications for summer slots had reached 70% of the 2019 level, following a 60% recovery in flights for the current cool season.
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