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Dusit International to Focus on Middle East and Asia Pacific Markets for 2009

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Dusit International has revealed that its 2009 strategy is to focus on the short haul market from the Middle East and Asia Pacific, by increasing its reliance on the short haul Asian and Middle East markets in both leisure and business travellers by 15%.

Mr. Octavio Gamarra, Senior Vice President, Dusit International said, “With the global economic slowdown and the effect on US and European economies, we see more potential in the short haul markets and aim to put our attention into this market from the Middle East and Asia Pacific - particularly in China, Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong, India, and United Arab Emirates. The economies of these regions have not suffered to the extent of the western financial sector and will provide more buoyant feeder markets. The short haul travel intra-regionally is more affordable and will continue to dominate tourism in Asia for next year and in the next decade.”

According to the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), in getting prepared for slowdown traffic from the long haul regions, TAT has taken steps to tap closer countries in Asia, with a hefty emphasis on emerging markets like India, China, Russia and the Middle East. TAT has already opened new offices in India, China and the Middle East.

Last year, the number of Chinese visitors to Thailand reached over 1 million for the first time, while arrivals from India and the Middle East also drastically increased. Dubai in the United Arab Emirates where TAT’s Middle East office is located, is the biggest market for Thailand among the countries in the Middle East. TAT has set a target of 491,000 visitors from the region in 2008.

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