Thailand’s Prime Minister has expressed satisfaction with the government’s Phuket Sandbox initiative, after hearing that it already generated about 43 billion baht of cash flow.
According to Government Spokesperson Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana, Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha is satisfied with the program’s ability to attract more visitors to Thailand. The premier said it is a good sign that the Kingdom’s tourism sector is gradually recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Citing information from the program, Thanakorn said since its debut on July 1st of 2021, Thailand has already welcomed nearly 333,800 visitors. It has generated more than 18 billion baht of revenue for the island province of Phuket and 43 billion baht of cash flow for the Thai economy.
Nanthasiri Ronnasiri, director of TAT’s Phuket office, said the number of tourists visiting the resort island has been steadily increasing. When it launched on July 1 last year, the island saw about 300 tourists a day — recently, the number of foreign arrivals hovers around 3,000 per day.
Throughout January, 86,282 tourists visited Phuket, she said, adding about 70,000 room reservations were made, with the average tourist staying for an average of eight days.
At present, hotel occupancy in Phuket ranges between 35-50%, though the number is expected to reach 60-70% during the Songkran holidays, she said.
To reach the goal of 160 million domestic trips this year, TAT will hold tourism campaigns and roadshows ahead of holiday periods to draw more Thai tourists. Panatchakorn Jaiyen, vice president of Phuket Tourist Association, said the “Phuket Ded Tang Koh” tourism promotion fair has been well-received by Thai tourists. The first fair was held in Bangkok last month.
Nonetheless, the Prime Minister is asking officials to perform their duties to the best of their ability, while urging all Thais to continue being good hosts to these visitors.
The Thai government has prepared measures to handle any situation in the event of another COVID-19 outbreak, said Thanakorn.