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Phuket officials prepare for final pitch ahead of Expo 2028 announcement

Phuket Specialised Expo
Phuket Specialised Expo

Phuket officials are crossing their fingers as they prepare to make one last pitch in the island’s bid to host the 2028 Specialised Expo. The Bangkok Post reports that a special delegation will make a final presentation to the Bureau International des Expositions in Paris on June 21 with an announcement before the end of the month.

The president of the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau says the final pitch will aim to persuade decision-makers of the island’s readiness to host the event. Chiruit Isarangkun Na Ayuthaya says in order for Phuket to hold the event, a budget of around 4.18 billion baht will be required.

However, the expo is expected to attract 7 million visitors from 106 countries and generate 50 billion baht for the economy. Officials are also hoping the expo will shine a light on Thailand, and Phuket in particular, as a top health and medical tourism destination.

Questions have been asked about the island’s suitability for such a large event with a lack of adequate and reasonably priced accomodation at the northern end of the island (where much of the event will be held), poor public transport, daily traffic delays along the main north-south arterial (Thepkasatri Road) and a lack of large conference and convention facilities.

The island province is competing with Barcelona in Spain, Serbia’s capital, Belgrade, and Minnesota in the US, to host the event. According to Chiruit, over 120 member countries will vote for their chosen host.

“The final presentation isn’t something we are worried about, but rather the vote. Keep your fingers crossed and we will see if Phuket can win the selection or not.”

A selection committee from the BIE has already visited Phuket to check its readiness to host the expo. If successful, Thailand would become the first country in Southeast Asia to host the event.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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