The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) reaffirmed Thailand’s commitment to promoting responsible tourism at the PATA Adventure Travel and Responsible Tourism Conference and Mart 2016 (AT&RTCM 2016), which was hold in Chiang Rai until February 19.
Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, TAT Governor declared during the conference that “ PATA event was an ideal platform to reiterate Thailand’s long-term commitment to promoting responsible tourism and we feel satisfied that the event attracted 278 delegates and top travel executives who promote adventure and sustainable travel options in destinations around the world. They had new opportunities for promoting environmental protection and social sustainability. And TAT was proud to take the chance to highlight how Thailand upholds the principles of responsible tourism that will also create sustainability at all levels of society.”
TAT initiated the ‘Seven Greens’ concept back to 2009 to establish a conceptual framework and umbrella theme for the implementation of green initiatives with the ultimate goal towards responsible tourism. In 2012, it began promoting guidelines of environment-friendly attraction management in major destinations, and to-date has endorsed nearly 400 green hotels and 50 ready-to-market eco-friendly products across the country. It has recently launched the Amazing Thailand Green Routes to encourage tour operators to promote products with a friendly environment for foreign visitors in a bid to highlight local cultures and let foreign visitors learning local traditions and lifestyles.
Another initiative is the Thailand Tourism Awards. Launched in 1996, it acknowledges and rewards creative and responsible tourism entrepreneurs, products and services that highlight Thai culture, protect the environment and contribute to society. The vast majority of the Award winners, especially the hotels and tour operators, are small- and medium-size enterprises, as well as local communities. The Awards presentation is held every two years on World Tourism Day on 27 September.
Mr Supasorn added that “these are only some of TAT’s initiatives, which form part of our long-term commitment to promote responsible tourism, and we will continue to do so even more aggressively. However, TAT cannot achieve responsible tourism alone; this requires the cooperation from all stakeholders to join hands together to create the betterment of sustainable tourism.”