The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is confident the number of tourists visiting Thailand this year will not be lower than 16 million provided that no political violence occurs.
TAT Governor Surapol Sawetseranee stated that Thailand’s tourist situation during the New Year improved satisfactorily. An outstanding increase was seen in the number of tourists from Japan and Europe. As a result, the number of tourists in 2009 met the set target of 14 million.
The TAT Governor believed that in 2010 the tourist situation would be more favorable, due to economic improvement in the targeted markets. The government’s Strong Thailand scheme was cited as another factor contributing to the optimism as the stimulus package includes several billion baht to promote Thai tourism in major markets. The scheme is expected to help boost the number of foreign tourists to 15-16 million. However, the Governor said the target is possible only on the condition that there would be no political violence.
Mr Surapol added that this year’s tourism promotion campaign would concentrate on festivals showing Thai identities such as Songkran and Loy Kratong, to be held in potential provinces like Chaing Mai, Songkhla and Chon Buri. He said the TAT would also take a road show to 14 major countries this year.