The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) and the Chinese city of Ordos, home to the Mausoleum of Genghis Khan, have signed a strategic cooperation framework agreement to promote bilateral cultural and tourism relations and enhance understanding and friendship between the Thai and Chinese people.
The agreement was signed at a farewell party marking the successful completion of the third Thai-Sino Culture and Tourism Friendship Caravan 2016.
The event was held at the China Cultural Centre in Bangkok and attended by H.E. Mr. Visanu Krue-ngam, Thailand’s Deputy Prime Minister, Mrs. Srisuda Wanapinyosak, TAT Deputy Governor for International Marketing (Asia and South Pacific), Mr. Pinit Jarusombat, Chairman of the Thai-Chinese Cultural & Relationship Council, Mr. Wang Chen, Assistant Director- General of the Bureau for External Cultural Relations of the Ministry of Culture, and Mr. Li Guojian, Deputy Mayor of Ordos City.
The agreement commits TAT and the Ordos City Government to strengthen bilateral tourism relations via exchanges of familiarisation trips by tour operators and travel agents, and media communications to disseminate information about each other’s destinations. Both sides will also find ways of providing airlines with marketing support to launch direct flights between Ordos and Bangkok.
The third Thai-Sino Culture and Tourism Friendship Caravan from Ordos, (one of the twelve major subdivisions of Inner Mongolia, China) to Bangkok was organised from 25 August to 29 September, 2016. The 5,868-kilometre road trip gave a significant boost to the growing trend towards two-way travel and connectivity within the Asia-Pacific region. The journey covering various cities of China and Lao PDR. entered Thailand at Chiang Khong district in Chiang Rai province and reached Bangkok on 22 September, 2016. It passed through major tourist attractions in Thailand’s North, Northeast, Central and Eastern regions.
The caravan is intended to strengthen tourism cooperation between Thailand and China, promote high-end Chinese visitors to Thailand and celebrate the 70th Anniversary of His Majesty the King’s Accession to the Throne this year. A total of 70 vehicles participated in the launching day as a symbolic tribute to the Royal Anniversary.
The farewell party featured a video presentation on Ordos City, music and dance performances and a photographic recollection of the Thai-Sino Culture and Tourism Friendship Caravan.
Mrs. Srisuda Wanapinyosak, TAT Deputy Governor for International Marketing (Asia and South Pacific) said, “China is Thailand’s most important market for tourists, and we welcome our Chinese neighbours with open arms. This Friendship Caravan will not only showcase the region’s many amazing attractions, but also help to strengthen the bonds between our nations and our people.”
China is Thailand’s leading and fastest growing source market. In 2015, Thailand attracted 7.9 million Chinese visitors, generating over 376 billion Baht in revenue, up respectively 71 per cent and 87 per cent over 2014.
This year, from January to July, Chinese visitors to Thailand totalled 5,764,839, or a year-on-year increase of 20.54 per cent. TAT is projecting about 10.5 million Chinese visitors with a projected expenditure of 509 billion Baht for the entire 2016.