Phuket set for 148 billion baht infrastructure boost to uplift tourism

Photo: Achadthaya Chuenniran/ Bangkok Post.

The renowned resort island of Phuket is set to undergo a significant infrastructural facelift, courtesy of a proposed budget of 148 billion baht by the Transport Ministry. The ambitious Phuket infrastructure upgrade plan includes the addition of a second airport on the island, a move aimed at transforming Phuket into a prime regional tourism hub.

Transport Minister Suriya Jungrungreangkit disclosed the government’s commitment to enhancing the tourism sector, following a Phuket meeting yesterday. The strategy includes visa exemptions and a major overhaul of the transport infrastructure.

Seven Phuket infrastructure projects, priced at a collective sum of 148 billion baht, are set to be put forward by the ministry. The aim is to enhance both air and land transport in Phuket, facilitating the influx of tourists and optimising the city’s potential for investment, economy, trade, and national security.

Suriya Jungrungreangkit outlined the proposed Phuket infrastructure projects, which span across multiple highways in Phuket, highway extensions, overpasses, and notably, the second airport in Phuket.

The allocation of the proposed budget is expected to occur in fiscal 2024, with the anticipation of some projects, particularly highway initiatives, reaching completion by 2026. This timeline will ensure locals and tourists can conveniently access Phuket via land transport, reported Bangkok Post.

Amnuay Pinsuwan, the deputy governor of Phuket, expressed the readiness of local government agencies and the business sector to present their proposals to Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin during his Phuket visit.

Phuket’s improvement plan extends beyond transport infrastructure to encompass waste management, water issues, and environmental matters. The city also has its sights set on enhancing city planning and safety measures for both locals and tourists, aligning these goals with the Andaman Wellness Economic Corridor.

Amnuay confirmed that legal procedures for financial assistance have been examined, with officials poised to present their proposals to the prime minister.

“The government is pushing policies to boost tourism and visa exemptions. I would like to guarantee that Phuket is ready to facilitate such schemes.”

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Mitch Connor

Mitch is a Bangkok resident, having relocated from Southern California, via Florida in 2022. He studied journalism before dropping out of college to teach English in South America. After returning to the US, he spent 4 years working for various online publishers before moving to Thailand.