New TAT Governor is Yuthasak Supasorn, an outsider of the travel industry. He will take officially his function next Tuesday.
The departure of Thawatchai Arunyik last March -probably one of the dullest personalities ever seen at the helm of TAT- opened for the national tourism organisation of Thailand a time of uncertainties. Although Mr. Arunyik had been faced with a turbulent political period, he did not really show leader’s capacity and just tried to survive by surfing over the political changes…
Mr. Arunyik’s apathy was maybe behind the government’s decision to look for someone from the outside, which could bring some fresh blood to the TAT institution. Enter then Yuthasak Supasorn, previously Chief Executive of MCOT, Thailand public broadcast organisation. The nomination generated surprise and raise questions among some TAT staff, who feels that the Governor should come from internal promotion. Many professionals wonder how someone with no travel and tourism background could have been chosen… Some others find that Mr. Supasorn is still to young to held the position. He is “only” 49!
However, this is probably a good move that TAT goes for outsiders as a fresh eye will certainly look to give a new impetus to the institution with new ideas and maybe a look at new market segments or marketing initiatives.
Commenting on his appointment, the new TAT governor declared , “I’m very honoured to have been selected to this very important post. Thailand has excellent tourism products and services and that TAT itself is staffed by capable people who have done a great job in helping to make tourism one of the main pillars of Thailand’s economy.”
Mr. Supasorn plans to introduce three immediate strategies upon taking the Governor post at the TAT, including reassuring global confidence and stimulating domestic tourism in the wake of the recent tragic incident in Bangkok, as well as creating a better TAT.
On reassuring global confidence, TAT’s domestic and overseas offices are providing regular updates on the ‘business as usual’ situation in Thailand and reiterating that the country continues to be a welcoming tourist destination. In December, TAT will organise a major event to draw tourists.
Promoting domestic tourism will also be a top priority, added the new Governor, especially towards students and senior citizens. New ways will promote domestic travel not just during school holiday periods and weekends but during weekdays, all-year.
On creating a better TAT, Mr. Supasorn told, “I plan to further strengthen the confidence among the people within and outside the organisation and to build on the existing ‘TAT SPIRITS’ concept to promote good governance and transparency as well as to reinforce TAT’s positioning as the ‘Guardian of Thai Tourism’ to extend its expertise to other organisations.”
He added the plans were to build on the TAT’s strong foundation to improve cooperation with other government agencies, the private sector and partners abroad, and to streamline internal procedures to upgrade the operational efficiency of the TAT, a state enterprise.
Welcome then at the head of the Tourism Authority of Thailand and good luck !