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Wednesday, 30 September, 2009, 13 : 00 PM [IST]

Krit Kraichitti, Thailand Ambassador to India calls for more joint efforts from BIMST-EC countries to promote tourism

Thailand Embassy to organise India – Thailand joint trade and tourism fairs
After inaugurating ‘Destination Thailand,’ an annual Tai Festival in New Delhi recently, Krit Kraichitti, Thailand Ambassador to India urged for more joint efforts among BIMST-EC (Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation) countries to promote trade and investment, including tourism. The BIMST-EC countries which have signed the BIMST-EC and ASEAN Trade agreements include: Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Thailand.

Talking to TravelBiz Monitor on tourism exchange, Kraichitti opined that there were lots of similarities among the BIMST-EC countries in terms of tourism. “Buddhism is a common thread that connects most of these countries. There is lot of potential for Spiritual and Religious Tourism. Buddhist destinations in India can benefit if promoted in the right manner.” Kraichitti proposed the creation of a tourism hub in Thailand to facilitate more travel from overseas markets including Europe. Similarly, Kolkata could also be another hub for Buddhist Tourism into Thailand. Kraichitti stated that India is a potential market for Thailand. He said that promoting Thailand in overseas markets including East Asia, Europe and China will help in enhancing tourism footfalls into the country for the tourism season starting next month.

Explaining the reason for low outbound traffic from Thailand to India, Kraichiti said India was still viewed as a costly destination with regards to air tickets and hotel accommodation.  “While 5.8 lakh Indians visited Thailand last year, the number of Thais visiting India during the same period was around 1.10 lakh,” added Kraichitti.  He also mentioned that the Thailand Embassy will initiate efforts to organise India – Thailand joint trade and tourism fairs in both countries to improve interaction between the trade and tourism industry in the two countries. “We have a lot of Indian businessmen settled in Thailand who want to explore opportunities for trade and investments in India,” added Kraichitti.
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