The first single destination PATA Task Force dates back to August 1974 when an invitation from Lt. General Chalermchai Charuvastr, Director General of the Tourist Organization of Thailand (TOT) was received to dispatch a task force to Chiang Mai. This was accepted at the PATA Development Authority meeting in Hawaii. The result of the first PATA destination task force is demonstrated by the vital important of tourism as a creator of over 35% of employment in Northeast Thailand today.
In the ensuing years, numerous requests were made by PATA Government-category members for PATA Task Force visits, and over 40 destinations were covered.
PATA will respond to a request for a task force from a government- category member, such as the Ministry of Tourism. This ensures that the recommendations of the task force are duly studied and have a realistic chance of being acted on.
It is important to note that the PATA Task Force Report is, and should be seen as the beginning of a process, not an end in itself.
The requesting authority should therefore have an understanding that a mechanism must be put in place to monitor the adoption and implementation of the task force’s recommendations, and where necessary, a return trip by a part of the task force team to inspect such implementation should be facilitated.
The best example of the power of PATA Task Forces is Macau SAR. Six Task Force reports have been completed for Macau SAR; the first in 1990. The most recent was delivered in May 2012.
In 1982, Macau SAR received 600,000 international visitor arrivals. In 2012, it is expected to receive over 30 million; the need for long-term master planning for tourism infrastructure, hard and soft, therefore, could not be clearer.
PATA looks forward to more “Task Force” challenges. Please let us know yours.