Since the outbreak of the global pandemic in 2020 and the subsequent travel restrictions implemented all around the world, one of the worst-hit businesses has been tourism. Thailand, which relies on tourism for a large part of its national GDP, is seeking an emergency solution.
The answer to the current tourism crisis may lie in cryptocurrency. More specifically the TAT coin. Since September of this year, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has been planning to delve into the crypto sphere and unveil its own utility token called TAT Coin.
This is part of what has been deemed a “crypto tourism” campaign in the South East Asian country. The aim of the campaign is to hopefully attract digital nomads to the country in an attempt to boost tourism. To clear the issuance of the coin, the TAT has been in discussions with the Stock Exchange of Thailand.
“Private sectors are ready to provide digital infrastructure, but we’re just waiting for the government to press the button by enacting laws, regulations, or even policies to help facilitate digital asset markets. Our national GDP could grow six times if we can strengthen this market.”– Jirayut Srupsrisopa (founder of Thai cryptocurrency exchange Bitkub) discussing TAT Coin at the “Transform tourism with cryptourism” conference.
According to local media, the TAT Coin is ready to be launched and is simply awaiting approval from the Thai government. The latter has been heavily urged to approve it in an attempt to try and economically recover from the fallout of the global pandemic.
Economically, Thailand has suffered enormously in the wake of the pandemic. In contrast to the average 40 million annual visitors it regularly received prior to the outbreak, it saw just over 100,000 foreign tourists visit in the first 10 months of 2021.
Naturally, the private sector in the country is very keen to support the rollout of the TAT Coin, but the Thai Government doesn’t seem so keen. The TAT itself is a state enterprise, so there is still a lot of groundwork that needs to be laid covering everything from regulation to security measures against cybercrime.