PHUKET: The Department of Tourism and the National Institute of Development Administration (NIDA) will hold major training courses for entrepreneurs in the tourism and hospitality industry in order to prepare them for the opening of the Asean Economic Community.

Pasit Poomchusri, Deputy Director General of the Department of Tourism said the tourism and service industry which includes lodgings, restaurants, transportation, souvenir shops and medical tourism has an important role in the national economy and may be affected by the formation of the AEC in 2015.

Speaking at a press conference about the training project, Mr Pasit said most of the foreign visitors to Thailand are from Asia and Europe. It is therefore necessary for Thailand to maintain high standard of service in order to attract more visitors.

Realizing this need and in a hope to push the potentials of Thai entrepreneurs, the Department of Tourism and NIDA with support from the Thai Hotels Association, the Thai Gems and Jewelry Traders Association and many other associations in the field, will hold a training course to raise the standards of service and personnel in the industry.

More than 2,500 entrepreneurs in the tourism and hospitality sector are expected to attend the course which will be available free of charge over the duration of the next few months.

The training course will be organized in top tourist destinations such as Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket, and many other provinces with high potential of expansion throughout the country.

Those interested are encouraged to visit or for detailed information.

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— News Bureau of Thailand