The economic ministers today approved a stimulus package for the last quarter of the year to boost the tourism sector, with the aim of achieving a 3% growth rate.

Tourism and Sports permanent secretary Chote Trachu said the purpose is to increase tourist arrivals for the second half of the year to 20 million, with expected revenue from tourism amounting to 2.04 trillion baht.

Tourist arrivals for the first eight months of the year totalled 26.5 million, generating 1.3 trillion baht of revenue. For the remaining four months of the year, Mr. Chote said there should be another 13 million tourist arrivals, with expected revenue of 750 billion baht.

Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) governor Yutthasak Supasorn, meanwhile, said that events planned to boost tourism for the rest of the year include World Cannabis Festival, Super GT, a Tour de France cycling competition and concerts featuring world-famous bands such as Tomorrow Land and EDC.

On Thursday, the World Bank cut Thailand’s economic growth projection this year to 2.7%, from 3.5%, because of the contraction in exports.

In its latest “East Asia and Pacific Economic Update”, the World Bank said today the 2.7% GDP forecast for Thailand is the lowest among ASEAN’s developing countries.

The Washington-based institution also cut Thailand’s GDP growth forecast for 2020 to 2.9% from 3.6%.

The World Bank’s report attributed the lower GDP growth outlook to an export slump in the first half of the year, the global economic slowdown and impacts from the trade tensions between China and the US.

The World Bank also said the Bank of Thailand has limited scope to tackle the baht’s strength, but the currency’s climb is a sign of investor confidence in the country’s economic fundamentals.

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