The statement was released ahead of Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s visit to Thailand today and tomorrow (Aug 9-10) and included a brief update on Thai-Russian bilateral relations.
Growing tourist arrivals from Russia and plans to open a consulate in Phuket were mentioned among other aspects of the relations.
“The number of Russian citizens visiting Thailand for tourism purposes is steadily growing: in the first quarter of 2017, about 489,000 Russians visited Thailand, which is 44% more than in 2016,” the ministerial statement said.
“Further growth of the tourist flow will be facilitated by the planned opening of the Russian consulate in Phuket and the establishment of an honorary consulate on Koh Samui,” the statement added.
The statement mentioned no further details about the planned consulate for Phuket. No additional information on these plans could be found on the ministry’s website.
The Russian honorary consulate in Phuket today said they had yet to be informed of any detailed plans for an official consulate on the island.
In 2016 Phuket welcomed over 500,000 Russians, which is more than half of the overall tourist arrivals from Russia for the year, outmatching all other Thai destinations combined.