TCEB to Fight Flood Damages
The Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) has outlined a three-phase plan in the wake of the country’s flood crisis to boost the recovery of the MICE industry in 2012. The bureau is targeting to revive the industry to pre-crisis levels before the third quarter of 2012 after consultations with key industry players. TCEB will propose the remedial plan to the Thai Government, which started in October 2011 and will last until March 2012.
The first phase involves urgent measures implemented in October that assists MICE travellers by establishing a one-stop coordination centre. The centre provides assistance, daily updated information and announcements to MICE delegates. TCEB will also coordinate with other agencies when needed, along with extra transportation to assist MICE travellers affected by the flooding.
TCEB outlined phase two of the remedial plan to take place from November to December, where a series of measures will be setup to boost confidence among organisers and participants, with the bureau continuing to provide regular news and information through media releases. TCEB also will commit funds to promote upcoming MICE events and provide specific support for events that have not been cancelled or postponed, and financial subsidy for 25 international trade fairs scheduled between 25th November this year and June 2012.
The final phase, recovery measures to begin in January and run until March next year, will include the proposal for a 300 percent tax exemption allowance for expenses. These will reportedly include the costs of management of events and incentive travel, training costs and exhibition booths. Further progress updates on recovery of Thailand’s MICE industry, and additional funding will also be allocated for marketing activities to boost domestic MICE events, as well as other rehabilitation measures targeted at international trade fairs and exhibitions.
Akapol Sorasuchart, president of TCEB, said, “The global economic crisis, the volatile domestic situation in Thailand over the past three years together with the current flood crisis have inevitably affected Thailand’s MICE industry. The industry has lost an estimated Baht 3.3 billion (US$106 million), and MICE visitor numbers to Thailand are down by 250,861 as of Nov. 15. … A proposal is in preparation for submission to the government to rehabilitate the industry to pre-crisis levels by June 2012.”