【英语财经】分析:中国游客提振泰国经济 Thai tourism: the Chinese keep coming

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2016-3-23 22:01

小艾摘要: Strong demand by Chinese travellers for holidays in Thailand continues to boost the Thai tourism industry.Thanks to Chinese visitors, tourism has become the single biggest source of growth in the Thai ...
Thai tourism: the Chinese keep coming
Strong demand by Chinese travellers for holidays in Thailand continues to boost the Thai tourism industry.

Thanks to Chinese visitors, tourism has become the single biggest source of growth in the Thai economy, which would be locked in decline without it.

But the surge in visitor numbers is also putting visible strain on the country’s travel infrastructure.

The number of Chinese visitors swelled by more than 71 per cent last year, taking growth in overall arrivals to more than 20 per cent. Growth from all other visitor nations was just 8.8 per cent.

As a result, Thailand received a record 29.9m international tourists last year — the most ever to visit an Asian country with the exception of China itself — of which 7.9m came from mainland China, more than a quarter of the total.

Just five years earlier, China accounted for a mere 7.9 per cent of all arrivals.

However, the 2015 growth figures are inflated by a low-base effect: violent political protests in Bangkok scared away many tourists in 2014.

Nevertheless, arrivals growth from China has continued to soar through the year-end peak season, with 29 per cent growth in December and 45 per cent in January.

The influx of Chinese tourists has been a big help to Thailand’s economy, which continues to be squeezed by falling exports, tepid consumption, weak commodity prices, and political instability. International tourism spending accounts for 11.4 per cent of gross domestic product and has become the economy’s most import source of growth.

GDP expanded 2.9 per cent in 2015 and would have grown just 0.6 per cent without the direct impact of foreign tourism spending. Without domestic tourism and the secondary impact from the tourism industry GDP growth would be near zero, according to FT Confidential Research, a research service.

Yet as hotel operators and souvenir hawkers rejoice, the swell in tourist arrivals has tested Thailand’s airports and transportation.

Both international airports in Bangkok have suffered from ever-longer immigration and security queues. At Don Mueang, the smaller of the two airports, travellers complain of very long waits for taxis. Phuket International Airport, the country’s third busiest, has doubled its intended capacity of 6.5m passengers a year, though a long-overdue new terminal may finally open in a few months.

Daniel Gallucci is a researcher covering Thailand at FT

中国游客对赴泰度假的强劲需求给泰国旅游业带来持续的提振。

由于中国游客的带动,旅游业已成为泰国经济增长的最大来源。若没有这一动力,泰国经济必定会下滑。

但游客人数激增也对泰国的旅游基础设施造成了明显压力。

去年中国赴泰国旅游人数上涨逾71%,推动泰国入境游客人数整体增长逾20%。来自其他国家的入境游客同比增长仅8.8%。

结果去年泰国入境游客人数创下2990万的历史纪录,其中790万来自中国内地,占比逾四分之一。去年泰国的入境游客人数还创下除中国外亚洲所有其他国家历年来入境游客人数之最。

而就在5年前,中国在泰国所有入境游客中还仅占7.9%。

不过也要注意,2015年中国游客人数的增长被低基数效应放大了——2014年曼谷的暴力政治抗议吓跑了不少游客。

尽管如此,中国赴泰游客人数在年底旺季继续飙升,去年12月增长了29%,今年1月增长45%。

泰国经济持续承受着出口下降、消费疲弱、大宗商品价格走弱以及政治不稳定等因素的挤压,中国游客的涌入对泰国经济起到了巨大帮助。入境外国游客支出占到泰国国内生产总值(GDP)的11.4%,已成为泰国经济最重要的增长来源。

2015年泰国GDP增长了2.9%,若剔除入境外国游客支出的直接影响,则只有0.6%的增长。据英国《金融时报》旗下研究部门《投资参考》(FT Confidential Research)的数据,如果再剔除国内旅游业的影响以及整个旅游业的间接影响,泰国的GDP增长将接近于零。

游客人数的增长虽然让酒店经营者和纪念品小贩喜笑颜开,却令泰国的机场和运输经受了考验。

在曼谷的两个国际机场,都出现了越来越长的入境和安检队伍,让机场饱受压力。在其中规模较小的廊曼机场(Don Mueang International Airport),游客抱怨等待出租车时间过长。普吉国际机场(Phuket International Airport)是泰国第三繁忙的机场,该机场的设计年客运吞吐量为650万人次,现在实际数字已翻了一番,不过,拖延已久的新航站楼可能会在几个月后最终投入使用。

丹尼尔?加卢奇(Daniel Gallucci)为英国《金融时报》负责泰国报道的研究员

译者/何黎

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