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Thailand Tourism Minister to Open Asia Pacific Hotel Investment Conference in Bangkok

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Thailand's Minister of Tourism and Sports, Somsak Pureesrisak, will deliver the welcome address at the Asia Pacific Hotel Investment Conference in Bangkok on 15 May 2013.

The two-day conference at the Dusit Thani Bangkok, is expected to attract hospitality players and investment executives from throughout the region.

The fifth-annual Asia Pacific Hotel Investment Conference is an International Hotel Investment Conference (IHIF) Summit organized by Questex Hospitality Group.

Somsak, who assumed his role earlier this month, declared that his priority is to make Thailand a safer destination for foreign tourists, saying it is otherwise "useless" to invest large sums of money to attract overseas visitors. Establishing a safe place to visit will bring sustainable tourism growth to Thailand and drive tourism revenue to meet the Thai government's projected target of two trillion baht by 2015, he said.

The career politician and outgoing governor of Suphan Buri province in central Thailand, is a member of the Chart Pattana party, part of the coalition government currently in power under Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra.

Following Somsak will be one of the founding fathers of Thailand's luxury hospitality industry, Chanin Donavanik, managing director and chief executive officer of Dusit International, who will deliver the keynote address, "Seizing Opportunities in the Most Desirable Hotel Investment Markets, an Owner's Perspective".

Conference delegates also will include Charles Blocker of IC Partners Limited; Deepak Ohri, CEO of Lebua Hotels and Resorts; Daniel Wakeling, vice president, mergers & acquisitions for Kingdom Hotel Investments; Alessandro Fiascaris, a principal in Blackstone's Real Estate group; Steve Carroll, national director asset management at LaSalle Investment Management; Gerald Yong, chief investment officer for The Ascott Limited; and Mohd K. Rafin, chief corporate officer of Park Hotel Group.

More than 200 delegates representing more than 100 hospitality and luxury companies are expected to attend, up more than 10% from last year. They include some of the region's leading hotel owners, investors, operators, developers, policymakers, designers, architects and master planners.

Topics for keynote addresses and panel discussions include "How to Solve the Agency Problem Between Hotel Owners and Operators", "Sourcing Debt to Finance Growth in Today's Market", "Unleashing the Potential of Existing Property through Reflagging, Repositioning and Renovation", and "How Best to Accelerate Return of Capital".

A welcome reception will be held at D'Sens 14 May, and on the following evening, lebua Hotels & Resorts will welcome delegates to Flute Bar and The State Room at The Tower Club.

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