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Marine tourism the cornerstone of 4-year provincial development plan



Marine tourism the cornerstone of 4-year provincial development plan | Thaiger

PHUKET CITY: The provincial government’s next four-year development plan aims to establish the island as a world-class marine tourism destination by 2012 while sustaining annual 10% increases in tourism-industry revenue over the four-year period starting in 2009.

The ambitious plan, drawn up by the Governor’s Office, was presented to elected local officials and representatives of government agencies at a meeting at the Phuket Merlin Hotel yesterday afternoon.

The event was chaired by Phuket Governor’s Office Chief Rapeepat Na Nakorn in place of Phuket Governor Niran Kalayanamit, who left Phuket yesterday on a study trip to Spain and Portugal.

Gov Niran plans to visit marinas, deep sea ports and medical facilities in both countries before his return on January 25.

The four-year plan is mandatory for obtaining central-government funding for provincial development projects through the Interior Ministry.

The strategy presented yesterday listed four objectives:

1. Establishing Phuket as a world-class marine tourism center by development of both natural and man-made tourism resources, including infrastructure, in an effort to attract more visitors from around the globe. Under the plan, success will be defined as increasing tourism-industry revenue by 10% for four successive years, starting in fiscal 2009.

2. Raising the standard of living of all Phuket people while maintaining the island’s unique identity. The goal calls for equal access to government services, with all government agencies working to help develop citizens into moral and productive members of society with a good sense of their identity as Thais.

3. Implementing more sustainable and better-managed use of natural resources, especially marine and coastal resources, while improving the quality of coastal water.

4. Development of local government administrative systems to better serve the people, including enforcement of anti-corruption measures already in place. To achieve this, administrators must improve work procedures and develop staff potential to raise organizations to a high standard.

Listed as key elements in achieving these goals were improvement to the island’s road and marine transport networks and services, both in terms of safety and overall standards.

The province must also work to develop Phuket’s reputation as a tourist destination by disseminating accurate information about safety and security issues, according to the plan.

During the meeting, local officials were also reminded that a Cabinet resolution made in November earmarks a total budget of 15 billion baht for the central government’s Yoo Dee Mee Suk (Good Life and Happiness) grassroots development initiative and that these projects also need budget approval from the Interior Ministry.


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