Phuket vies for Specialised Expo 2028, boosting health and medical tourism

Photo Courtesy of Bangkok Post

As the final presentation and vote for the Specialised Expo 2028 approaches, many Thai citizens are eagerly awaiting the decision, hoping that Phuket will be chosen as the host city. The Thai delegation is set to present their case to the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE) on June 21, highlighting the southern resort island province’s potential as a host location.

The theme proposed by Thailand for the expo is ‘Future of Life: Living in Harmony, Sharing Prosperity,’ which would require a budget of approximately 4.18 billion baht. The event is scheduled to take place from March 21 to June 20, 2028. Chiruit Isarangkun Na Ayuthaya, president of the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB), believes that the event could attract around seven million visitors from 106 countries and generate up to 50 billion baht in economic value.

In addition to its economic benefits, the expo would also play a crucial role in promoting Thailand’s health and medical tourism industry. Phuket is being developed as a key health and medical tourism city with global recognition, reports Bangkok Post. The island is currently one of four cities in the running to host the 2028 expo, competing against Belgrade, Barcelona, and Minnesota.

With more than 120 BIE member nations voting, Chiruit acknowledges that the final presentation is not the main concern, but rather the outcome of the vote. The BIE’s selection committee has already visited Phuket to assess its suitability as a host city. If Thailand is successful in its bid, it would be the first Southeast Asian country to host the expo.

A night reception will be held in Paris on June 16 for BIE member countries, allowing Thailand the opportunity to further convince them of Phuket’s readiness to host the Specialised Expo 2028. Pattanachai Singhavara, director of the TCEB’s southern region office, shared details of the upcoming event. As anticipation builds, Thai citizens and officials alike are keeping their fingers crossed for a positive outcome.

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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.