Connect with us


Phuket will lead recovery of Thai tourism

Legacy Phuket Gazette



Phuket will lead recovery of Thai tourism | Thaiger
Phuket NEWS Hound

– A daily digest of news from around the world compiled by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

PHUKET: The curent issue of Time magazine quotes Bill Heinecke, whose Minor group owns two hotels in Phuket, as emphasizing that Phuket and Hua Hin were among the many places in Thailand where “tourists were never in any danger and there were no problems” during the anti-government protests.

In a story headlined “Protests Not Expected to Hurt Thai Economy”, the magazine notes that fallout from the civil unrest is expected to be limited, with most economic analysts predicting a year of strong growth. Indeed, the Bank of Thailand announced on May 27 that GDP would still grow between 4.3% and 5.8% for the year, not far off the forecast by the World Bank before the violence began.

Exports are the primary driver of the Thai economy. They are expected this year to contribute a record-breaking 60-65% of GDP, nearly double their contribution in the late 1990s.

Tourism, while a major growth industry, has yet to achieve a double digit percentage in what it brings to GDP. In 2008, a boom year for Thai tourism, the sector contributed less than 8%. This year, by all accounts, it is expected to deliver something a bit over 6%, about one-tenth of the contribution of exports.

Time refers to it as a “small blessing” that the recent bloodshed took place during the low-tourism season, noting that industry executives are now hopeful confidence in the country as a holiday destination can be restored before the start of the high season in October.

With confidence in Phuket damaged far less than has been the case in Bangkok and the north of the country, it is not unreasonable to assume that Phuket will play a leading role in restoring tourism’s national health over the months ahead.

Curfew cut

Authorities have lifted a night-time curfew imposed 10 days ago in Bangkok and 23 other provinces after deadly anti-government protests, the prime minister said yesterday.

“The curfew will be lifted but the state of emergency will remain in place,” Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva told reporters.

He said security officials had proposed ending the measure “as the situation is under control.”

Thai army has too much power

Time magazine
This week’s most depressing statistic comes courtesy of an unnamed Thai government source which reveals that the military had been willing to kill “between 200 and 300 people” and injure “several thousand” in its May19-20 operation to storm the red shirt protest site in Bangkok.

Both Thai and international human rights activists, including the New-York based Human Rights Watch, have called for an independent inquiry to scrutinize the use of deadly force by both soldiers and armed red shirts.

PM Abhisit Vejjajiva is now engaged in two struggles: one against insurgents in the far south, the other against red shirts in the north and northeast. In both, he relies utterly upon the powerful Thai military, explaining his reluctance to offend the top brass by investigating the actions of their soldiers.

Tearful times for travel and tours

The Association of Thai Travel Agents (ATTA) reports that the number of tourists handled by Bangkok’s international airport thus far in May has dropped significantly.

By 20 May, agents had handled only 52,666 clients, compard with 100,168 clients for the entire month in 2009.

So far, ATTA members are ahead this year, having handled 917,224 international customers compared with 703,323 during the period 1 January to 31 May 2009.

Travel agents started to report drops in advance bookings in early April, with mass cancellations by mid-May as news of violent clashes was televised worldwide.

Advance bookings for June continue to fall and there are few if any signs of new bookings being generated for July, the ATTA says.

Traffic jamming Bali tourism

The Jakarta Globe
Bali’s all-important tourism sector is under threat as roads and facilities are lagging, officials warned recently.

Bali Governor Mangku Pastika has called for greater funding for infrastructure, in particular to ease the traffic jams gripping the more popular sites around the south of the island.

“Our concern is that one day Bali will cease to be a desirable destination, mainly because of the traffic jams, so resolving this problem must be a priority.”

Bali’s global profile is on the rise, with visitor numbers increasing by 21% last year. It is also set to host several high-profile events, including the 2013 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit and the 2014 Miss World pageant.

— Gazette Editors


Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forums
🔔 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join YouTube for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand12 mins ago

Covid UPDATE Sunday: 18,027 infections, expat vaccine registration

Transport6 hours ago

August flight plans: Bangkok Airways, Nok Air, Thai Lion

Coronavirus (Covid-19)7 hours ago

New site for foreigner vaccine; Mor Prom deletes appointments

Welcome back to Thailand!

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in Thailand - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages!

Politics9 hours ago

Facebook fake news post suggesting a coup faces prosecution

Koh Samui13 hours ago

UPDATED: Samui Covid-19: 14 new Black Club infections, 2nd small cluster

Thailand14 hours ago

40,000 cases a day could happen by September, says projection

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Phuket14 hours ago

Phuket Sandbox Covid-19 infections: 35 today, 209 this week

Thailand15 hours ago

Prayut says he will not resign, warns politicians to behave

Thailand16 hours ago

Bangkok Train market to possibly close for good

Coronavirus (Covid-19)17 hours ago

Border between Kanchanaburi and Myanmar closed until…

Thailand17 hours ago

Covid UPDATE: 18,912 infections, provincial totals

Coronavirus (Covid-19)18 hours ago

PCD says don’t throw away used masks in water bottles after infections linked to bottles

Thailand19 hours ago

Government says it’s okay to criticise them, if it’s fact based

Thailand20 hours ago

Bangkok volunteer group “Sai Mai Will Survive” overwhelmed with calls

Coronavirus (Covid-19)21 hours ago

Phuket reservations slow down for August

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism5 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism5 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism5 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand6 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand6 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand6 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8