Maybank Sees Tourist Arrivals to Thailand Rebounding throughout 2024; Top Pick: AOT-MINT

Maybank Securities (Thailand) (MST) upgraded its sector view toward Thailand’s tourism from Neutral to POSITIVE, as the sector expects tourist arrivals to continue to rebound in 2022-24, with AOT (TP: THB80.00) and MINT (TP: THB42.00) rated as Top Picks stocks.

In April, the number of tourists visiting Thailand increased by 39 percent month-over-month to 293,350. MST believes May arrivals would reach between 400,000 and 500,000, and the accelerating trend could continue through the end of the year, with international arrivals reaching 1 million per month in the fourth quarter of 2022, according to TAT’s projections. As Thailand’s entry regulations and Covid cases are easing, MST maintains its forecast of 9 million tourist arrivals in 2022, rising to 22 million in 2023 and 40 million in 2024. The surge in tourist arrivals in 4Q22 ought to result in high hotel occupancy rates in 4Q22, a sector driver.

MST expects MINT and CENTEL to be profitable this year with respective revenues of THB1.6 billion and THB488 million; MINT should be driven by the recovery of Europe’s hotel, and CENTEL by the restaurant business. In the meantime, MST believes that AOT is a primary beneficiary of the Thai tourism recovery and that MINT is buoyed by the strong recovery in Europe (60 percent of normalized hotel revenue contribution), which could result in RevPar returning to pre-Covid 2019 levels by the end of 4Q22.