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Phuket’s upcoming reopening aims to help residents avoid poverty

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Phuket’s upcoming reopening in July is aimed at helping local residents avoid falling into poverty. According to Phuket Vice Governor Pichet Panapong, the average monthly income of local residents before the Covid-19 pandemic sat at 43,000 baht per month. Now, Pichet says it has fallen to only 8,303 baht per month, signaling a drastic fall nearing the poverty line.

“If the tourism industry and the island’s economy does not recover, the average income in Phuket is likely to keep decreasing. In July, the average income will be only 1,964 baht.”

Pichet’s statement yesterday about the dire situation in the normally tourist-laden island, falls in line with an economic forecast that was delivered last month by Assistant Professor Chayanon Phucharoen, Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies, Faculty of Hospitality and Tourism, Prince of Songkla University Phuket campus.

At a recent meeting, Phuket Public Health Office Chief Kusak Kukiattikoon said the Phuket government and the tourism private sector [sic] had filed a request to the central government for 933,174 doses of Covid-19 vaccines.

“The number of vaccines is to be provided to 466,587 people, more than 70% of people living on the island. Phuket has 417,402 people registered in the civil registration [database] as living in Phuket. The other groups are 94,100 people working in the tourism industry who are not registered as living in Phuket, 5,250 people working in other industries, and 56,700 foreigners living on the island.”

But Kusak noted that only those 18 years of age and older could receive the vaccine, making the number of people to be vaccinated drop to 310,357. Kusak gave the quota of vaccine doses to be provided to Phuket as a total of 933,174 doses to vaccinate 466,587 people by October. But, the amount of foreigners residing in Phuket is still unclear.

And, despite the reopening potentially helping to pad local residents’ pocketbooks, many locals say they are apprehensive about receiving the Covid vaccine. But Kusak says plans are moving forward with locations being set already for people to receive inoculations.

“The PPHO will set up nine vaccination stations across the island, at: Phuket Rajabhat University, Saphan Hin stadium, Prince of Songkla University [Phuket campus], Chalong Hospital, Phuket Orchid Resort, Jungceylon shopping mall, the Angsana Convention and Exhibition hall [at the Angsana Laguna Phuket resort], the Thanyapura Health Resort and Splash Resort Phuket.”

SOURCE: The Phuket News

 

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10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Bill

    Thursday, March 25, 2021 at 2:13 pm

    tis better to be poor than to have the common cold for 1 week

  2. Bruno

    Thursday, March 25, 2021 at 2:44 pm

    poverty + they are not poor in Phuket they are greedy scammers – who do any methods to rip of turists ! – rude and unfriendly mafia island – !
    What about the people in Essan ? they are on way to poverty and there is not many infection cases -but no one cares about them why ?

  3. Steve Antcliffe

    Thursday, March 25, 2021 at 4:11 pm

    Priceless! So, the locals average earnings were 43k baht a month, before Covid. Really?
    And Phuket is opening in July despite not having government approval for this…
    Really?
    And Jung Ceylon is going to be a vaccination centre..
    Really?

  4. Issan John

    Thursday, March 25, 2021 at 4:30 pm

    “Pichet’s statement yesterday about the dire situation in the normally tourist-laden island, falls in line with an economic forecast that was delivered last month by Assistant Professor Chayanon Phucharoen, Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies, Faculty of Hospitality and Tourism, Prince of Songkla University Phuket campus.”

    Except it doesn’t “fall in line with” the forecast, but is a complete misreading of it, taken from the media. What the forecast ACTUALLY said was that this would be the “tourism revenue per capita” NOT the “average monthly income”.

    Completely different.

  5. Issan John

    Thursday, March 25, 2021 at 4:37 pm

    “many locals say they are apprehensive about receiving the Covid vaccine.”

    “Apprehensive”? Hardly the full story.

    “An online poll by The Phuket News poll last month revealed that Phuket people were divided on whether or not to take a COVID vaccine.

    Overall, 28% of respondents voted an outright “Yes” to taking a COVID vaccine, and a further 28% voted “It depends on the vaccine”.

    The remaining 43% voted an outright “No” to taking a COVID vaccine.
    …..
    By demographic, of the Thai nationals who took part in the poll 10.77% voted “Yes” and 14.87% voted “It depends on which vaccine”, but a huge 74.36% voted a plain “No”.”

  6. Roger Bruce

    Thursday, March 25, 2021 at 8:48 pm

    average 43.000 baht a month
    WOW some rip off going on with tourist there
    Now only 8 400 baht a month
    Hey gooba most of Thais only make 10,000 baht a month
    Glad your local residents are feeling a bit of the real world
    Don’t hold your breath those large tourist numbers will never be in Thailand again
    Your Gov stuff that up your corruption stuff that up Covid stuff that up
    Other better places near you better value and more friendly than your local Mafia
    Your days are over get used to it get a real job ..lol

    Good luck Thailand

  7. toby andrews

    Thursday, March 25, 2021 at 10:02 pm

    So the local population are averse to having the vaccinations.
    Yet ferangs have to.
    Starve, and regret your ways, even before the restrictions.
    My theory is these islanders were pirates before the tourists arrived, and lying, cheating, is in their DNA.
    I want to see their ribs showing through malnutrition.

  8. Ben

    Friday, March 26, 2021 at 1:55 am

    At this point I’m not sure what polls to believe, or statistics. It’s clear the island’s working population and business owners have suffered great economic hardship. The government isn’t coming to the island with a money tree that’ll solve this economic crisis. It is however providing a solution that has a good chance of restarting the island’s economic engine with reasonable risk.

    The island has many constituents and I’m sure you can get any poll answer you desire depending on who you poll. Some will say we need tourists badly so give them a non quarantine alternative and some will say I’m apprehensive about taking the vaccine. Any solution will not please everyone but life has to eventually go on with something that provides the best risk/reward. If you don’t want the vaccine then that’s your choice but you’re gambling the vaccine will give you a worse outcome than potentially catching COVID. Personally I’ve gotten two doses of the Pfizer vaccine and think it’s silly to be afraid of it. I went into it thinking any side effect means my body is reacting normally to a vaccine that’s working. Turns out I had no side effects so maybe I would have been asymptomatic if I had contracted COVID but who knows. I do know that they’ve distributed hundreds of millions of jabs so far and people are not dropping like flies.

  9. Karl

    Friday, March 26, 2021 at 11:08 am

    Wow,

    The number of foreigners residing in Phuket is unclear?

    The Immigration is crazy about TM30 and TM47. What for, if they don’t know? Thai High Tec?

  10. toby andrews

    Friday, March 26, 2021 at 2:12 pm

    I John, Who was that economic forecast delivered by?

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Ann Carter is an award-winning journalist from the United States with over 12 years experience in print and broadcast news. Her work has been featured in America, China and Thailand as she has worked internationally at major news stations as a writer and producer. Carter graduated from the Walter Williams Missouri School of Journalism in the USA.

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