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 Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People

People on the Move

N° 96 (Suppl.), December 2004



Mrs. Juthamas SIRIWAN, Governor,

Tourism Authority of Thailand



Your Eminence,

Your Grace, the Apostolic Nuncio,

Excellencies, Reverences and Distinguished Guests,

On behalf of the Tourism Authority of Thailand, this is indeed an honor for me to be here this evening to welcome you to Thailand and to the opening of the Sixth World Congress on the Pastoral Care of Tourism. This international event is very auspicious not only for our country, but also for Asia, as it is the first time that it has been held in this part of the world.

During the past few years, the tourism industry has experienced a number of disturbances in some parts of the world that has effected tourists' decisions in travelling. However, Thailand has still been fortunate to welcome tourists of various age groups and interests. This is because our country is known worldwide for its peacefulness, friendliness, and warm generosity and hospitality of the Thai people.

Also even though our country is predominately Buddhist we still respect all other religious faiths. As part of our plan to encourage more tourists to Thailand, we have initiated various campaigns and activities, some of which are related to religion, such as pilgrimage tours that include meditation, visits to temples, churches, and mosques depending on tourists' faiths.

And I would like to hope that while you are in Thailand, you will have an opportunity to see some of our religious heritage as well as our unique culture and traditions, not to forget our vast variety of destinations and attractions.

Finally, I would like to offer my sincere gratitude to the Pontifical Council for selecting Thailand as the venue for the Sixth World Congress on the Pastoral Care of Tourism. And hope that you will successfully achieve the objective you have set out to undertake.