Ms. Thapanee Kiatphaiboon takes the helm as Governor of Thailand’s Tourism Authority, bringing extensive experience in domestic marketing and tourism business products.
Ms. Thapanee Kiatphaiboon began her role as the new Governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT).
Having been with the TAT in 1999 after earning a master’s degree in science from the University of Surrey in the UK, Ms Thapanee has held various positions within the organisation, including Deputy Governor for Domestic Marketing and Deputy Governor for Tourism Products and Business.
In her most recent role as TAT Deputy Governor for Domestic Marketing, Ms. Thapanee initiated various tourism initiatives to help drive Thailand’s economy. Among them included the workation in Thailand, faith and religious tourism routes, and solo travels – which helped stimulate 151.45 million domestic trips in 2022 – about 88% of the record year in 2019 – and generated 641.5 billion Baht.
In her role as Deputy Governor for Tourism Products and Business, Ms Thapanee was recognized for her leadership in initiating the Amazing Thailand Safety and Health Administration (SHA) certification program that enabled hotels and services to meet specific health and safety standards. The program became a mandatory requirement for hotels seeking to register as quarantine facilities during the period of strict COVID-19 control measures and also received global recognition in alignment with the WTTC SafeTravels protocols.
Back in June 2021, the Tourism Authority of Thailand confirmed a routine reshuffle of five key deputy governors, TAT’s previous governor Yuthasak Supasorn confirmed the sideways reshuffle of five deputy governors (civil service level-10 officials).
- Thapanee Kiatpaiboon, deputy governor of tourism products and business, will head TAT’s domestic marketing department.
- Apichai Chatchalermkit, deputy governor of digital research, will move to the top post in the tourism products and business department.
- Tanes Petchsuwan, deputy governor of marketing communications, will move to the department for markets in Asia and the South Pacific.
- Siripakorn Chiawsamoot, deputy governor for marketing Europe, Americas and the Middle East, will move to the marketing communications department.
- Chattan Kunchorn Na Ayudhya, deputy governor for markets Asia and South Pacific, will move to the department for markets Europe, the Americas and the Middle East.
Recommendation of the nomination subcommittee May 2023
The decision was made by the TAT board, following the recommendation of the nomination subcommittee, which began the recruitment process back in February.
Thapanee was chosen unanimously by the subcommittee, chaired by Arrun Boonchai, the permanent secretary of the Ministry of Tourism and Sports. The selection criteria focused on capabilities in administration, knowledge of the tourism industry, and marketing expertise.
The new TAT governor expressed her honour at being chosen as the new governor and assured tourism operators that she would continue the tourism promotion policies set by her predecessor, Yuthasak Supasorn, to ensure a smooth transition. She plans to announce her strategy for developing tourism promotional plans in collaboration with the private sector.