Asia Travel Re: Set – Issue #114: In Summary

ATR Issue 114 cover

Here’s a 60-second speed-read of Asia Travel Re:Set Issue #114 – 5 Non-Travel Issues That Could Impact Travel & Tourism in Asia Pacific!, published on 16 July 2023.

Read Asia Travel Re:Set Issue 114 in full HERE

Travel and tourism are more political than ever. This is especially true in geo-strategic flashpoint zones. North East Asia and South East Asia fit into that category.

This week’s edition assesses five non-travel issues that might impact the travel outlook. Destinations covered include Thailand, Japan, China, Singapore and Bali. Here is a quick sample of three issues discussed:

1) Fukushima & Fish

The fallout from Japan’s decision to release treated radioactive water from the “tsunami-wrecked” Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant is starting. China, Hong Kong & South Korea voiced opposition to a “selfish” move. As major importers of Japanese seafood, all three nations will halt imports. Further punitive trade actions are possible. Where this veers into tourism territory is food. Japan’s culinary scene is central to its appeal for tourists from China and throughout Asia.

2) Politics & Protest

Thailand’s political crisis is deepening. This week, Pita Limjaroenrat, leader of the Move Forward party, which won most votes in the 14 May election, was blocked from becoming Prime Minister. This complex conservative vs progressive politics power play could draw out across months. Where this veers into tourism territory is potential civil unrest. The spectre of a new round of street protests and/or another military political intervention appear real.

3) Tax & Tourist Culture

During 3.5 years of producing The South East Asia Travel Show, we’ve learned that when you insert “Bali” into a title, listener numbers increase. Hence, Bali governor Wayan Koster’s declaration of an IDR150,000 tax on international visitors from 2024 is a media gift. But, as a tax on tourists, isn’t it inherently a tourism issue? Yes and no. It’s actually a political intervention, a regulatory tool.

That’s a wrap for this week’s mini update from Asia Travel Re:Set Issue #114.

Until the next issue you can find me at LinkedIn and The South East Asia Travel Show – where this week we discussed the tourism outlook in Maldives with Thoyyib Mohamed, Managing Director of Visit Maldives.

Click to listen to Reflecting on 3 Years of Tourism Recovery in Maldives, with Thoyyib Mohamed, Visit Maldives

Read Asia Travel Re:Set Issue 114 in full HERE

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