MICE travel numbers jump
Thailand had more than 8 million MICE visitors (meetings incentives, conventions and exhibitions) in the second quarter, a 2.9 percent increase from the same period last year, while the visitors spent 6.3 percent more, generating 54 billion baht in revenues. The top five international Mice arrivals in the quarter were from China, India, Japan, Hong Kong and Indonesia. International Mice visitors generated 26.7 billion baht in income, a 7 percent rise, while in total around 353,000 came to the country. Domestic MICE travelers reached 7.75 million, an 18 percent jump, generating 28 billion baht, up 180 percent. The domestic MICE travelers were mainly in exhibitions and incentives. Thailandís strong showing saw the country rise to number 4 in the MICE sector in Asia. TCEB predicts that 2019 will see a total of 35.9 million travelers this year, spending 221.5 billion baht, up from 34.2 million travelers and 213 billion baht in the last fiscal year (October 2017-September 2018).
The Board of Investment reports that foreign applications for BOI status and promotions rose in value by 253 percent in the first quarter of 2019 compared to 2018. There were 245 applications with a total value of 84.1 billion baht. Of those, 55 projects were proposed by Japanese nationals, with a total value of 26.9 billion baht, Chinese investors applied projects totaled 38 with a value of 9.7 billion baht and Singaporeans were third with 29 projects valued at 5.45 billion baht. Overall there were 387 applications for BOI status, a 12 percent year on year rise. Of those, 199 applications, 51 percent of all applications, were for the government's 12 targeted industries, with a combined value of 58.8 billion baht.
K-Bank is collaborating with FinTech to launch a new program allowing Kasikorn customers to transfer money overseas via the KPlus app. KPlus currently allows the transfer of six currencies to more than 20,000 banks with 77,000 branches in 24 countries worldwide but will increase the number of currencies and destination countries in the next phase of service. Currencies now available are the US dollar, the British pound, the Euro, the Singapore dollar, the Hong Kong dollar and the Australian dollar. Customers can transfer up to US$49,999/transaction each day without any minimum requirement. Customers can transfer funds for five reasons; merchandise payment, consultantís fee, studentsí expenses, income repatriation by workers and remittance to family members with permanent residence overseas.