Korat gears up 'Green Box' reopening
Aims to 'promote trust' among visitors
Nakhon Ratchasima: Authorities and business operators in this northeastern province are gearing up to welcome tourists back under the "Korat Green Box" model.
This is in line with the government's plan to reopen the country within 120 days tentatively scheduled for mid-October, Kobchai Boon-orana, Nakhon Ratchasima governor, said yesterday.
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha announced the government's plan in mid-June despite the risk of a further rise in Covid-19 infections.
Gen Prayut said it was necessary for the country to begin mitigating the immense economic hardship inflicted by the pandemic.
"We are confident the province is ready to receive visitors and Korat residents are ready to become hosts,'' Mr Kobchai told the media.
Mr Kobchai was with Watcharee Pratchayasnusorn, president of the Tourism Council of Nakhon Ratchasima, Yutthasak Suppasorn, governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand and representatives from Nakhon Ratchasima Chamber of Commerce.
Mr Kobchai said the province is renowned for cultural, historical and natural tourist attractions which drew around 9 million visitors in 2019 before the pandemic hit.
The virus had caused huge losses to business operators and the economy in the province.
Under the "Korat Green Box'' model, the province has stepped up safety measures for locals while private sector networks would improve standards in service businesses and promote the provincial reopening programme in a manner that will build trust among visitors.
Pak Chong district, where the renowned Khao Yai National Park is located, will be the first to be reopened, as it is a gate to the Northeast and includes hotels and golf courses, he added.
Ms Watcharee said the council initiated the reopening programme with the target of maintaining safety and the environment while at the same time helping to restore local businesses.