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Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) to participate in Thai Expo in the UAE

Travel News Asia 10 September 2002

The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is to participate in a trade and investment promotion exhibition to be organised by the Department of Export Promotion in the United Arab Emirates between September 17-19, 2002.

Designed to boost trade, investment and tourism from the Middle East, the Thailand Exhibition 2002 will be held at the Expo Centre Sharjah in Sharjah, one of the states of the UAE. Thailand is highly honoured to be the first country to organise an international exhibition at the newly-built centre.

The exhibition is being supported by the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Participating agencies will include the Ministry of Commerce and Board of Investment (BOI), chambers of commerce and industry, and manufacturers and exporters of products and services.

The exhibition is part of the Thai governments efforts to boost the economy, and attract more business people, investors and tourists from the Middle East.

Buyers and businessmen from nearby regions like Africa, Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) and South Asia also attend these exhibitions, opening up the prospects of trade, investment and travel from those places, too.

TAT Governor Mrs. Juthamas Siriwan commented, TAT has thrown its full support behind the event. It will be an excellent opportunity for us to exhibit a broad range of tourism products and services to attract more visitors from the Arab Gulf countries.

Within a total space of 500 square metres, the TAT pavilion will feature a Rain and Forest theme. Exhibits will comprise mainly ecotourism and adventure products like rock climbing, mountain biking, sea canoeing, golf, which can be enjoyed by both Arab citizens as well as the many expatriates living in the Middle East.

Visitors will enjoy demonstrations of Thai handicraft-making, Thai textiles and silk fashion show, Thai and Halal food products, umbrella, batik and porcelain (Benjarong) painting, fruit and vegetable carving and Thai massage.

Throughout the three-day event, a number of cultural performances will be held as well as lucky draws and games with big prizes and Thai souvenirs.

Organised annually since 1995, this years event will be the eighth of its kind. However, it is the first since all such exhibitions were relocated to the new Expo Centre Sharjah which is more advanced than the former venue.

Last years event was well attended by over 10,000 people and about 3,000 trade visitors.

- In 2001, the UAE was the biggest market for Thailand among the Arab countries with 36,692 visitor arrivals, up 7.53% over 2000. During January-June 2002, visitors from UAE totaled 14,198 (up 8.60% over the same period of 2001).

- In 2001, visitors from the UAE stayed an average of 10.85 days in Thailand and spent an average of 4.943.96 baht (or US$111.28) per person per day. This generated 1.66 billion baht (US$37.40 million) tourism foreign exchange revenue to the Thai economy. Indeed, visitors from the UAE were the fourth highest spenders, only after Saudi Arabia, Egypt and South Africa.

- Citizens of the UAE can obtain visa-free facilities for a stay of up to 30 days.

- In terms of accessibility, there is no shortage of international airlines operating regular direct flights linking Thailand with the UAE. There are 17 weekly direct flights between Bangkok and Dubai. Of these, 14 are code-shared by Emirates and Thai Airways International (THAI) and the remaining three by Royal Brunei Airlines. There are also two direct weekly services between Bangkok and Abu Dhabi by Gulf Air.

- Starting October 27, 2002, THAI will also operate Bangkok-Bahrain- Abu Dhabi-Bangkok flights three times a week on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays.

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