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Influx of Indian tourists expected over the next decade

The Thaiger

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Influx of Indian tourists expected over the next decade | The Thaiger

PHOTO: LookEast Magazine

Tourism from India will increase markedly over the next ten years.

This prediction from the head of the Association of Thai Travel Agents, Wichit Prakorpkoson. By 2028 he says he expects 10 million Indian visitors each year. About Chinese tourism, the ATTA chief say he expected the numbers to slow from previous trends but there will still be 20 million visitors from China coming to Thailand annually in ten years time.

Speaking to Thai Rath, he also called for the free visa-on-arrival scheme to be extended to after Songkran (April 13) and make it easier for tourists to visit neighboring countries.

He predicted that Chinese tourism would be back to normal by January 2019 after the downturn in Q4, 2018. He says 10.5 million visitors from China have come to Thailand this year among the 38 million total arrivals.

“The 20% growth in Chinese tourism year-on-year is no longer sustainable but I expect 11-11.5 million Chinese to come in 2019.

He says he expects a dramatic surge in Indian tourism –  1.5 million visitors for 2018. But he expects this to grow to 20% a year and be 3 million visitors annually in five years time and 10 million in ten years time.

Tourism and Sports Minister Weerasak Kowsurat revealed in the same article that requests have been made and granted for an increase in flights from India into Phuket and Don Muang airports.

He also wants to make renting vehicles easier for tourists by making temporary licences easier to get and doing away with fines levied on people renting to those without licences.

SOURCE: Thai Rath



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Business

Thai exports fall 5.7 percent in January, year-on-year

The Thaiger

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Thai exports fall 5.7 percent in January, year-on-year | The Thaiger

Thai export results have dipped for the third straight month, falling more than 5.65% compared to a year earlier. The fall was a lot bigger than expected, according to the Thai commerce ministry.

Shipments contracted 1.72% in December, compared to a year earlier as well.

January’s export drop was due to falling shipments of rice, gold, electronics and cars, according to the ministry. Digging into the numbers, exports to the US rose 8.3% in the first month of the year, compared to January 2018, but exports to China slumped 16.7%.

The strong Thai baht, Asia’s best performing currency this year, has increasingly hit exports, particularly rice orders.

Checking imports for the same period, and the numbers jumped surprisingly 13.99% year on year, after sliding 8.15% in December 2018. Analysts say the surge in imports was partly due to imports of arms and military weapons.

There was a trade deficit of $4.03 billion in January, compared with a forecast surplus of $320 million surplus. December 2018 had a $1.06 billion surplus.

But the ministry says they are still forecasting export growth of 8% for 2019 after a 6.7% increase last year.

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Thailand

Weather for February 22

The Thaiger

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Weather for February 22 | The Thaiger

Bangkok

Generally clear. High 35ºC. Winds S at 15 to 25 km/h.

Weather for February 22 | News by The Thaiger

Phuket

Generally clear. High 32ºC. E winds shifting to S at 15 to 25 km/h.

Weather for February 22 | News by The Thaiger

Chiang Mai

Generally clear. High 36ºC. Winds SSE at 10 to 15 km/h.

Weather for February 22 | News by The Thaiger

Pattaya

Generally clear. High 31ºC. Winds SSW at 15 to 25 km/h.

Weather for February 22 | News by The Thaiger

Hua Hin

Partly cloudy. High 33ºC. Winds SSE at 15 to 30 km/h.

Weather for February 22 | News by The Thaiger

Ko Samui

Partly cloudy. High 26ºC. Winds SE at 15 to 25 km/h.

Weather for February 22 | News by The Thaiger

 

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Business

Strong baht a concern for Thai hotel sector

Bill Barnett

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Strong baht a concern for Thai hotel sector | The Thaiger

by Bill Barnett

Thailand’s baht performance against Asian currencies in 2018, was unmatched, with the exception of the Japanese yen.

Commenting on the trend financial news Bloomberg have highlighted that in 2019, a further 4% in growth this year have it sitting at the top of the table.

Oddly, one of the underlying factors stimulating the baht’s appreciation is the recovery in tourism arrivals which has a double-digit impact on the country’s GDP.

While the elections remain a wild card on forward expectations, the reality is that the currency has not been hit like the Chinese yuan, which has been disrupted by a threatened U.S. China trade war and slowdown in its economy.

Despite higher than expected tourism numbers in 2018, hotel owners are cautiously optimistic on the prospects for the year.

In reality, despite rising prices for visitors, the economic climate is leading many property developers turning to hospitality assets as the real estate market remains volatile. The general view is that sustainable cash flow as part of their business mix is good and that tourism fundamentals remain strong.

Still, looking at nearby competitors such as Vietnam, which is rapidly growing from a cub into a tourism tiger, the issue of affordability is concerning. Currency swings remain a real and present factor in demand, so expect hoteliers to keep watching currency levels closely in 2019.

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