Thailand Extend Visa Fee Exemption Until 2011Thai ministers met in a cabinet meeting recently where the main topic for discussion was the extension of the tourism stimulus package. This package was put together during 2009 to help combat the onset of the global economic recession which has severely affected the tourism industry in Thailand.
Bangkok, March 2010 [Pattaya Daily News]: Thailand’s cabinet meeting on Tuesday announced the extension of a tourism stimulus package which was due to expire on the 31st of March. Thai Minister of Tourism and Sports claimed that the extension was aimed at continuing to persuade and influence foreign tourists into visiting the Kingdom.
Deputy Government Spokesman Mr. Watchara Kannika informed the press that measures approved for extension included the exemption of fees on tourist visas, reduction in aircraft landing and parking fees, cutting of electricity consumption guarantee fund for hotel operators and the continuation of an insurance coverage program for tourists.
Thailand’s Minister of Tourism and Sports also presented the latest tourism figures to the cabinet, which stated that in 2009 some 14.09 million tourist visited the Kingdom. Those tourists are estimated to have injected an estimated 527.3 billion baht into Thailand’s economy for the year. Compared to the figures for 2008, tourists were down by 8.21% and revenue by 3.38%, however; due to the global economic crisis and continuing political instability this drop was somewhat anticipated.
Concluding the cabinet meeting, the Tourism ministry projected that between 15.3 and 15.6 million tourist will visit the Kingdom during 2010 bring in over 600 billion baht revenue.