Cambodia's tourism sector is set to form a task force next week to address the Thai political crisis that has caused foreign arrivals in the Kingdom to plummet
- From: Chim <ChimS1@xxxxxxx>
- Date: Wed, 3 Dec 2008 02:33:54 -0800 (PST)
Tourism task force set to tackle crisis fallout
Written by May Kunmakara
Wednesday, 03 December 2008
The group, made up of government and private sector representatives,
hopes to address plummeting tourism arrivals in the wake of the Thai
CAMBODIA'S tourism sector is set to form a task force next week to
address the Thai political crisis that has caused foreign arrivals in
the Kingdom to plummet, officials told the Post Tuesday.
Ho Vandy, president of the Cambodian Association of Travel Agents,
said the task force would consist of 10 institutions, including
airlines, travel agencies, hotels, restaurants and government
departments, and would develop a national strategy to attract foreign
He said the Ministry of Tourism approved the task force on Tuesday and
that it would convene next week.
Both of Bangkok's major airports have been occupied by anti-government
protesters since last week, leaving hundreds of thousands of
The crisis has hit Cambodia's tourism industry hard, as about a third
of the Kingdom's visitors arrive via Thailand.
Tourism Minister Thong Khon told the Post earlier that Cambodia would
lose about US$100 million if the political stalemate in Bangkok
dragged on for more than three months.
Tourism is one of the country's few economic engines, with 1.7 million
people visiting the Kingdom in the first 10 months of this year.
At the end of 2007, the government predicted international visitor
arrivals to reach 2.2 million in 2008 and 2.7 million in 2009.
It has since curbed its expectations following the global financial
crisis, border disputes with Thailand and the current turmoil in
But Ho Vandy said the task force hopes to shift Cambodia's tourist
arrivals away from Thailand.
"With the political turmoil in Thailand, the economic crisis and the
terrorist attacks in India, we have to take this opportunity to
benefit from the current situation," he said.
"Although most tourists in Cambodia come through Thailand, our tourism
sector has survived because we have other gateways such as Malaysia,
Singapore, China, South Korea and Vietnam.
Miyura Kirivuth, managing director of APEX Travel, said that his
business has slowed since the crisis began.
"A lot fewer tourists come through Vietnam than Thailand, so it has
hurt us," he said.
Land crossings have also fallen off to near zero, after a brief surge
in the days immediately following the airport takeovers in Bangkok.
Pich Saran, chief of immigration police in Poipet, said at least 1,000
people crossed between Thailand and Cambodia from Thursday to Sunday,
but that traffic had plummeted since the beginning of December.
- Prev by Date: A chat with Cambodian pop singer Meng Keopichda
- Next by Date: officials say the number of mobile phone users in Cambodia has increased nearly 15% this year
- Previous by thread: A chat with Cambodian pop singer Meng Keopichda
- Next by thread: officials say the number of mobile phone users in Cambodia has increased nearly 15% this year