MONDAY, April 15, 2024
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‘Betel nut island’ to be a role model for green tourism, minister says

‘Betel nut island’ to be a role model for green tourism, minister says

Trat province’s Koh Mak will serve as a role model for developing sustainable tourism under the so-called Bio-Circular-Green (BCG) economic model after winning international recognition as a green destination, Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn said on Wednesday.

The 12.4 square kilometre island in Trat province is named after the areca nut, also known as the "betel nut".

Phiphat made the comment during a ceremony held to congratulate representatives from the island on its green destination award and present them with a plaque titled “2022 Green Destinations Top 100 Stories”.

The Green Destinations Top 100 Stories awards are from the website Green Destinations. The website says the programme celebrating and promoting 100 destinations as inspiring examples for other destinations, tour operators and visitors has run annually since 2014.

‘Betel nut island’ to be a role model for green tourism, minister says The Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration will use Koh Mak as a model for developing other tourist destinations to become green destinations under the BCG economic model, Phiphat said.

The BCG model will focus on quality tourists, rather than quantity, and will ensure tourism is sustainable through proper environmental management and fair distribution of income to local residents, he said.

The Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration has prioritised environmental protection in its development of Koh Mak and, as a result, it has become a clean, convenient and safe destination, Phiphat said.

‘Betel nut island’ to be a role model for green tourism, minister says “As a result, Koh Mak is the role model for tourist destination islands of Thailand in terms of safety and measures for handling garbage,” he explained.

Atikhun Kongmee, director of the Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration, said the agency would further develop Koh Mak so that it would win more prestigious recognition from the Green Destinations this year.

The best stories from the Top 100 list will be selected by a jury to be nominated for the Green Destinations Story Awards at ITB Berlin, an international travel exhibition.

Atikhun said it would be a challenge for his agency to push Koh Mak for the award because the Top 100 Stories destinations must meet 15 criteria while the Green Destinations Story Awards must meet 30.

‘Betel nut island’ to be a role model for green tourism, minister says The agency is also looking for other destinations to nominate for the Top 100 Stories awards, including Songkhla Lake, Atikhun said.

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