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Thailand: Spa industry provides new hope for tsunami survivors

The Department of Health Service Support is pinning its hopes on the spa and massage industry reviving Thailand`s sluggish tourism industry in its Andaman provinces…

The Department of Health Service Support is pinning its hopes on the spa and massage industry reviving Thailand`s sluggish tourism industry in its Andaman provinces hit by last December`s tsunami, the department`s director-general revealed.

Dr. Rewat Wisarutwet told reporters that the department was funding a Bt6.6 million project to provide massage and spa training for 2,950 workers whose jobs were affected when the tsunami hit the country`s Andaman region on 26 December.

Over the past three years, Thailand`s spa industry is thought to have attracted nearly 3 million foreign tourists, earning the country Bt3.6 billion in foreign revenue.

Sixty percent of this revenue has come from spa operations in the Andaman area.

But the December tsunami destroyed 114 of the region`s 247 spa operations, with the result that the industry has plunged into rapid decline.

Under the training programme, spa industry workers are receiving 10 days of skills training from 27 April – 13 May, with the training focusing on the techniques of oil massage, aromatherapy and Thai herbal massage.

Also included in the training programme is a course on English language skills.

Dr. Rewat said that the programme hoped to pull in Bt2 billion to the Andaman spa industry this year.

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Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales. She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.

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