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Thailand eyes 3 million tourists from Indochina

23 September 2016 - Suchat Sritama, The Nation

In an interview with the Bangkok-based The Nation newspaper, Tourism Authority of Thailand’s (TAT) director in Ho Chi Minh City, Napasorn Kakai, expects to attract three million tourists next year from three markets in Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos.

Kakai was quoted as said that more than 2.4 million tourists from these countries had visited Thailand last year, generating an income of Bt65 billion ($1.86 billion).

“Some 1.2 million tourists were from Laos, 760,000 from Vietnam, and 490,000 from Cambodia,” the report said.

She said TAT expected the number of visitors from these markets to reach 2.6 million this year, and to climb to three million in 2017.

“Indochinese countries are becoming more interesting markets for the Thai tourism industry because they now have many more wealthy people, and their citizens are ready to travel abroad ‒ and Thailand is one of their favorite destinations,” she added.

In order to increase the number of quality tourists from Indochina, the TAT is planning to promote more destinations such as Phuket, Chiang Mai and other cities, along with established medical and wellness services at a lower cost than similar offerings in other countries, The Nation reported.

For the Cambodian market, the TAT will promote Thailand in much the same way as it does for Laos ‒ that is, encouraging more medical and shopping tourists.

Outbound Cambodian tourists between January to June reached 699,654, compared to 533,014 in the same period last year, according to the June report from the Tourism Ministry’s department of statistics and information.