Malaysian Tourism and Trade
presentation at Westin Chiang Mai
H.E. Dato’ Syed Norulzaman, the Malaysian ambassador,
visited Chiang Mai to show business and travel industry representatives the
immense potential Malaysia has to offer.
He opened the evening by thanking Jumpol Chutima,
president of the Chiang Mai Chamber of Commerce, for all the help provided
to organize the event. He went on to say, “Up to now, Malaysia was only
promoting relations between Malaysia and Bangkok, Rayong and the South, but
this will be changed from now on. Chiang Mai becomes more and more the
aviation hub in this part of the world. The collaboration with the north
must be increased but before that a lot of groundwork has to be done. We
have to focus towards economic links between Malaysia and Thailand, to
investments; trade on both sides have to be touched as well as looking at
the similar attractions drawing tourists from the other parts of the world.
Malaysia and Thailand can develop joint packages for tourists and link Kuala
Lumpur with Bangkok, Phuket or Chiang Mai.”
Dato’ Syed Norulzaman, the Malaysian ambassador, speaking at the Malaysian
Tourism and Trade presentation. (Photo by Michael Vogt)
During his speech he pointed out that at the Joint
Informal Cabinet Meeting between Malaysia and Thailand, both governments
agreed to pursue activities promoting joint ventures in selected industries.
Other proposals included strengthening the capacity of Malaysia-Thai service
providers, facilitating border trade, establishing joint free trade zones at
the border, promoting information exchange and the possibility of cross
listing of the stock exchanges in KL and Bangkok to develop a regional bond
Chutima, president of the Chiang Mai Chamber of Commerce speaking at the
Westin Chiang Mai. (Photo by Michael Vogt)
He also said that to facilitate trade, the Central Bank
of Malaysia (Bank Negara) and the Exim Bank of Thailand established the
Accounts Trade agreement in September 2002. It is basically an additional
tool for doing business using local currency instead of US Dollars.
The advantages to exporters and traders in settling trade
payments through the accounts trade system include guaranteeing payments in
domestic currency for export, eliminating credit and exchange risk.
left) Zulkifly Md. Said, director of Malaysia Tourism Promotion Board’s
Thailand Office, H.E. Dato’ Syed Norulzaman presenting a token of
appreciation to Jumpol Chutima, president of the Chiang Mai Chamber of
Commerce. (Photo by Michael Vogt)
During the question and answer session, clarification was
sought on various issues including ‘tax exemption’ for traders and the
possibility of increasing flights from Malaysia to the north of Thailand.
Amadeus pushes e-ticketing
Amadeus has just launched e-ticketing for 10 additional
airlines in Thailand following its introduction with Thai Airways
International in February. The 10 airlines are: American Airlines, Air
France, Continental Airlines, KLM, Lufthansa, Swiss Air Lines, Austrian
Airlines, Scandinavian Airlines, Singapore Airlines and United Airlines.
E-ticketing, pioneered by major airlines in the US, is
expected to replace paper tickets, underscored by recent announcements of
United, Air Canada and British Airways to phase them out by the end of 2004.
Amadeus president Asia Pacific, David Brett, said,
“E-ticketing had been implemented in 40 markets for 19 airlines in the
second quarter of this year. The average cost of issuing an e-ticket is only
around US$1 or US$2 per ticket. We expect this technology to generate cost
savings of up to US$7 per ticket for airlines.” (TTG Asia)
Air India offers special discount fares for senior citizens
Senior citizens traveling
to USA, UK and Europe from India can now receive special discounted fares
for travel on Air India flights. These return fares which are up to 25
percent lower than normal fares will be valid for outbound travel from India
up to March 31, 2004.
Travel on these special tickets will, however, not be
valid out of India during January 2004 and from USA-UK-Europe to India
between November 15 and December 31, 2004. Men age 65 and over and women age
60 and over will be eligible for these discounted fares.
Seized drug house to be
opened up for tourists
For years, Phanom Sapanek was the scourge of the northern
province of Lampang, operating a methamphetamines and bribery racket from
his 100 million baht Thai-style wooden house while simultaneously sitting on
the provincial administrative organization.
But now his house, seized by the Anti Money Laundering
Office (AMLO) is to be turned into a tourist attraction in a bid to conserve
what has been described as an important part of the province’s
architectural heritage and is expected to be open to the public in October.
Sitting on 39 rai of land, it is thought to be one of the
largest Thai-style residential complexes in the country, and constructed in
the elegant Thai Lanna architectural design.
AMLO secretary-general Pol. Maj. Gen. Pheeraphan Premphut
said that AMLO was handing over the house to the Lampang authorities, as it
did not have sufficient personnel or funding to ensure that the house was
kept in good condition. (TNA)
National Artists to showcase
work at Bangkok’s new airport
Passengers using Bangkok’s new international airport
will be able to see the work of some of the country’s most prominent
artists, thanks to a joint project by New Bangkok International Airport Co.
(NBIA) and Silpakorn University.
As part of the scheme, the NBIA is providing 700,000 baht
in financial support to showcase works by 37 National Artists and leading
art teachers at Suvarnabhumi Airport, due for completion in 2005.
It is hoped that the ‘Suvarnabhumi Arts’ program will
introduce international visitors to Thailand’s unique artistic heritage
through the works of famous Thai artists including Prayat Phongdam, Preecha
Thaothong, Nonthiwan Chantanaphalin, Thaworn Ko-udomwit, and Panya
One million customers send Emirates’ record tumbling
The award-winning international carrier enjoyed a bumper
August, with a total of 1,009,636 people flying on its ever-growing network.
This compares with 792,399 last August, up more than 27 percent.
Emirates also achieved a new record of 2,115 departures
from Dubai International Airport, against 1,577 in August 2002. And freight
loads surged to 52,430 tons, 28 percent more than last August and the most
ever carried by the airline - which pays special attention to cargo.
Emirates Group Chairman, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Bin
Saeed Al-Maktoum, said, “This highlights the success of Dubai’s drive to
become the new global transportation hub for the 21st century and attract 15
million visitors by the year 2010. But we must never be complacent, and even
as our own records fall, we are preparing to redouble our efforts by
unveiling new products to please our passengers.”
THAI to launch three new routes
Thailand’s national flag carrier is to launch three new
routes to India, China and Laos this winter, and is also preparing to
inaugurate routes linking Phuket and Chiang Mai with Australia and Japan.
Kanok Aphiradee, president of Thai Airways International,
said that flights would operate on the three new routes from 26 October 2003
to 27 March 2004 in response to the growing trade and investment sector, as
well as to accommodate more tourist and business travelers during the cold
In October, he said, the airline would receive two new
Boeing 727-400’s for use on the new routes to Chenai in India, Guilin in
China, and Luang Prabang in Laos. In addition, THAI is preparing to
introduce new routes linking Sydney, Melbourne, Phuket and Bangkok, Tokyo
and Chiang Mai, and Tokyo and Rangoon. The airline will also increase the
number of domestic and international flights on a number of routes,
including Bangkok-London, Bangkok-Frankfurt, Bangkok-Copenhagen,
Bangkok-Seoul, Bangkok-Jakarta, Bangkok-Colombo and Bangkok-Krabi. (TNA)