Netflix seen as a partner to help promote Thai tourism
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Netflix seen as a partner to help promote Thai tourism

Entertainment execs to meet with premier

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment plans to partner with Netflix to promote the tourism industry as a soft power tool to stimulate the country's economy during the post-pandemic period.

Environment Minister Varawut Silpa-archa said that an executive from the American streaming service joined discussions about ways of enhancing cooperation and allowing the kingdom's national parks and other natural resource sites to be used as locations for Netflix films.

He said the company's executive team will come to Thailand and meet with Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha to talk about further cooperation with the entertainment business.

Mr Varawut said the ministry must first learn more about the company's filming policy related to the use of the country's natural resources and biodiversity system.

"We have national parks on our hands so we are ready to cooperate with Netflix. But it is very important to learn more about the company's global content, especially in terms of the environment and sustainability," he said.

He added this could be an effective soft power tool delivering positive messages to combat climate change.

He said if Netflix's policy aligns with that of the ministry, full cooperation will be provided to the company.

Mr Varawut also cited his admiration for the Netflix series Our Great National Parks, narrated by former US president Barack Obama, which focuses on narratives about national parks worldwide.

Marine tourism is a key source of income for Thailand and one of the positive side-effects of the pandemic is that the country's natural resources have had a chance to fully recover as they have not been so disturbed by human activity, he said.

The ministry recently reopened Maya Bay, the top destination in Krabi, after it was closed for two years, under new regulations to protect and preserve this natural treasure.

At present, Maya Bay has measures in place limiting the number of daily tourists. Visitors can walk but not swim in the water to protect its sensitive marine ecological system.

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