Category: News @ Ayutthaya.

Ayutthaya to be nominated as World Expo site

Sanan’s proposal gets the nod from cabinet

Thailand will nominate the old capital of Ayutthaya as the site for World Expo 2020.

The cabinet yesterday approved Deputy Prime Minister Sanan Kachornprasart’s proposal to nominate the central province as the World Expo site, reasoning that the ancient city has the strongest potential among the candidate locations of Chon Buri, Chanthaburi, Phetchaburi, Chiang Mai and Phuket.

Mr Sanan is chairman of the site selection committee.

The cabinet also approved in principle a 300-million-baht budget to undertake the bid and to campaign for support from other countries, deputy government spokesman Supachai Jaisamut said.

Another 100 million baht from the 2012 fiscal budget will be spent promoting the expo among Thai people.

The Thailand Convention Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) reported that Ayutthaya could draw 36.99 million visitors and generate expo income (tickets and sponsorship) of 61.84 billion baht if it is chosen to host the event. There would also be a multiplier effect on the provincial economy of up to 194.39 billion baht during the event, according to the TCEB.

Ayutthaya will propose the “Balanced Life, Sustainable Living” concept when bidding on behalf of Thailand to be the host country.

Thailand will have to compete with many well-known cities such as Sao Paolo, Guangdong, Copenhagen, Ankara, Cape Town and Dubai. The United States will propose a multi-city approach and Brisbane is also a key contender.

Currently, Ayutthaya is working hard to meet key criteria of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE), the body overseeing the global event, which is staged every five years.

The next World Expo is scheduled to be staged in Milan in 2015.

TCEB president Akapol Sorasuchart said Thailand would be ready to bid for the hosting of the World Expo 2020 before October. The deadline is set for April 2012. The BIE will announce the winner in 2015.

“Thailand is the first country to have its expo site officially approved by the government,” he said.

“Thailand needs to get votes from at least 80 countries from a total of 157 to be the host. We will discuss our international promotion activities with the Foreign and Commerce ministries,” Mr Akapol said.

He said Ayutthaya would have to spend around 31.5 billion baht to invest in transport and other infrastructure.

The Support Arts and Crafts International Centre of Thailand will be a focal location of the expo with total space of 1,200 rai. The government plans to buy 200-300 rai of nearby land under a budget of 1.8 billion baht if it cannot expropriate agricultural land.

“We hope the World Expo will help lift the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) by 1.35% in 2020. This excludes the economic impact worth more than 100 billion baht from investments related to the event,” he said.

The Thailand Incentive and Convention Association strongly believed that the hosting of the World Expo 2020 would help promote Thailand in terms of investment, tourism and meeting, incentive, convention and exhibition (Mice) activities.

“It’s a good step for Thailand to become one of the biggest venues for international events,” its spokesman said.

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Category: News @ Ayutthaya