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Phuket Aims to Host 2025 InterPride World Conference: A Landmark Opportunity for Asia

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Last month, Phuket came alive with vibrant colors and joy as people thronged to participate in the Pride Month celebrations. (Photo: Achathaya Chuenniran)

Phuket authorities have confidently announced that the island is fully prepared to vie for the prestigious opportunity to host the 2025 InterPride World Conference. Governor Sophon Suwannarat took the lead in signing the Pride & Equality Phuket memorandum of understanding (MoU) alongside representatives from both the public and private sectors. This effort is aimed at promoting gender equality on the island.

Governor Sophon emphasized that the MoU focuses on elevating awareness about gender inclusivity, providing protection for individuals within the LGBTQ+ community, and minimizing gender discrimination across the island. Notably, Phuket’s bid will face competition from Chiang Mai and Khon Kaen.

The InterPride World Conference is an annual five-day event that attracts around 700-800 participants from 70 different countries. This conference is a significant platform for discussing the progress of LGBTQ+ movements and sharing experiences in promoting gender equality worldwide. It’s projected that the event will inject approximately 1.1 billion baht into the local economy.

Mr. Sophon expressed that the provincial authority expects endorsement from the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB), citing Phuket’s preparedness to host gender-inclusive events as a key advantage. Pride Month events held on June 9 and 29 served as benchmark examples, showcasing the island’s organizational capabilities.

Moreover, these Pride events attracted a substantial influx of income to Phuket, as LGBTQ+ visitors are recognized as quality tourists with significant spending power, elaborated Mr. Sophon. “We hope Phuket will be chosen on July 11,” he added enthusiastically.

Kongsak Khoopongsakorn, president of the Phuket Chamber of Commerce, corroborated this optimism. He remarked that the Pride & Equality Phuket MoU exemplifies the island’s readiness to host the 2025 InterPride World Conference, which will provide a substantial boost to the local economy.

Chernporn Kanjanasaya, chairman of the Federation of Andaman Region Industries, applauded the successful execution of the Pride events, which exemplified a strong, proactive commitment from various sectors and the local community.

Anupab Vejwanichsanong, vice president of the Provincial Administration Organisation (PAO) of Phuket, confirmed the PAO’s unwavering support for hosting this international event.

Since its inception in 1982, the InterPride World Conference has predominantly been hosted in Europe and North America, with no previous hosts in Asia. Should Thailand secure the bid during this year’s conference in Colombia in October, it will mark a historic first for Asia as a hosting continent, according to TCEB.


  1. Mark L. July 10, 2024

    This is fantastic news for Phuket and the entire region! Hosting the InterPride World Conference would be a huge step forward for inclusivity in Asia.

    • Sarah July 10, 2024

      Absolutely, Mark! This could be a great opportunity to showcase Asian countries’ progress in LGBTQ+ rights. It’s about time!

      • TommyBoy July 10, 2024

        I agree too! But don’t you think the competition from Chiang Mai and Khon Kaen could be pretty tough?

      • Mark L. July 10, 2024

        True, TommyBoy, but Phuket seems well-prepared with strong public and private sector support.

    • Chris Jenkins July 10, 2024

      It’s not just about being prepared; Phuket needs to prove it’s the superior option over the other contenders.

  2. Lila K. July 10, 2024

    I can’t believe InterPride has never been hosted in Asia before. This is way overdue.

    • RavenShadow July 10, 2024

      It’s a shame, right? Asia has so much to offer in terms of diversity and culture.

    • Alex July 10, 2024

      Better late than never! Phuket will set an example for other Asian cities.

  3. Jamie July 10, 2024

    I hope they win the bid. Phuket’s economy could really use that 1.1 billion baht injection!

    • Ronny July 10, 2024

      I think the economic impact alone makes a strong case. Plus, LGBTQ+ tourists are known for spending a lot.

    • Jamie July 10, 2024

      Exactly! The tourism sector would get a massive boost, and it would be great for local businesses.

    • PatN July 10, 2024

      But shouldn’t we focus on the inclusivity part rather than just the money?

  4. David A. July 10, 2024

    If Phuket secures the bid, it would make history for LGBTQ+ rights in Asia. I’m all for it!

    • Jane_Pride July 10, 2024

      It’s not just about making history; it will also pressure other Asian countries to be more inclusive.

    • Carrie July 10, 2024

      Yes, it might inspire other countries to host similar inclusive events.

  5. Erik July 10, 2024

    Phuket’s Pride events were incredibly well-organized. I’ve got high hopes for them!

  6. Michael T. July 10, 2024

    While I’m excited about this opportunity for Phuket, let’s not forget there are still issues with LGBTQ+ rights in Thailand.

    • Sophia M. July 10, 2024

      Michael, that’s a fair point. Hosting the conference could be a chance to address those issues directly.

    • Michael T. July 10, 2024

      Exactly, Sophia. It could serve as a platform for broader discussions and reforms.

    • David W. July 10, 2024

      But will the Thai government actually listen and make changes? That’s the real question.

  7. Andrea L. July 10, 2024

    I really hope Phuket doesn’t miss this chance. It could open up so much for LGBTQ+ rights in this part of the world.

  8. Monica123 July 10, 2024

    700-800 participants from 70 countries! Just imagine the cultural exchange and connections that will happen.

    • Blake77 July 10, 2024

      Phuket will truly become an international hub.

    • Monica123 July 10, 2024

      And the boost to local businesses and artists would be incredible.

  9. Rick July 10, 2024

    I’m not sure if Phuket can handle such a large event given its current infrastructure.

  10. ninja_turtle July 10, 2024

    Pride & Equality MoU is a step in the right direction, but execution is key.

  11. Elle July 10, 2024

    Phuket hosting the InterPride World Conference would be a game-changer for tourism and local businesses!

  12. Peter_Jay July 10, 2024

    It’s cool that private sectors are involved too. It’s important to have widespread support.

  13. Vivian July 10, 2024

    I just hope the focus remains on inclusivity and doesn’t get overshadowed by commercial interests.

    • Sam July 10, 2024

      That’s always a risk, but with the right balance, it could be managed.

  14. Leo84 July 10, 2024

    Any boost to the economy post-pandemic is welcome. This will definitely help.

  15. Maddy July 10, 2024

    I think it’s wonderful that the whole community is coming together for this cause. Good luck, Phuket!

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