Thailand just got the most tourists ever as boom continues

Bangkok - Thailand received a record number of foreign tourists for a single month as a boom in arrivals continues.

Arrivals jumped almost 16% in December from a year earlier to an unprecedented 3.5 million, the Tourism Ministry’s Permanent Secretary Pongpanu Svetarundra said in a briefing in Bangkok on Tuesday. He predicted a fresh high in January amid the traditional peak season for tourism.

"We will continue to keep breaking records," Pongpanu said.

Pongpanu said the government is targeting 37 million visitors in 2018 and 3 trillion baht ($94bn) of revenue from domestic and foreign tourists combined. That would be worth more than a fifth of the economy - and put ever greater strain on congested airports as well as Bangkok’s packed roads and metro system.


Tourism and exports have contributed to an acceleration in economic growth in the military-run country, as well as an appreciation in its currency. 

The baht has strengthened more than 2% against the dollar this year, one of the strongest performers in Asia, prompting concern that the climb will eventually harm competitiveness in Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy.

* Sign up to Fin24's top news in your inbox: SUBSCRIBE TO FIN24 NEWSLETTER


ZAR/USD
17.00
(-0.26)
ZAR/GBP
21.16
(+0.03)
ZAR/EUR
19.08
(-0.02)
ZAR/AUD
11.78
(-0.31)
ZAR/JPY
0.16
(-0.11)
Gold
1775.28
(+0.01)
Silver
17.98
(+0.38)
Platinum
811.00
(+0.56)
Brent Crude
42.92
(+2.64)
Palladium
1899.00
(+0.66)
All Share
54610.17
(-0.01)
Top 40
50307.10
(-0.01)
Financial 15
10176.91
(-0.37)
Industrial 25
76741.32
(+0.77)
Resource 10
50263.69
(-0.99)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes morningstar logo
Company Snapshot
Voting Booth
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
I'm not really directly affected
18% - 1563 votes
I am taking a hit, but should be able to recover in the next year
23% - 2028 votes
My finances have been devastated
34% - 3042 votes
It's still too early to know what the full effect will be
25% - 2202 votes
Vote