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The future of Thailand’s hotels, tough times ahead – VIDEO

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Thailand’s hotels are facing a very dark time with the Thai borders still largely closed and many of them remaining closed for business. Whilst some local domestic stimulus has provided a bit of a minor reboot for the battered industry, there is still more than 90% of the rooms in the country remaining unoccupied with staff unemployed, debts and leases unpaid.

C9hotelworks.com MD, Bill Barnett, is of the region’s most respected consultants for the industry and has been in constant contact with them during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Phuket’s hotel industry is reaching breaking point and drastic economic support from the government will be needed for it to survive the high season. The warning from a slew of industry leaders who fear the island has reached a crucial turning point.

In the wake of the controversial “Phuket Model” international travel reopening scheme, reality is biting back as hotels in Thailand’s leading resort island are unable to sustain operating viability based on domestic tourism.

According to the Airports of Thailand, passenger arrivals at the aviation gateway have plunged 65% year-on-year from January through July of this year.

What is clear is that the 86,000 rooms in Phuket’s registered accommodation establishments cannot realistically break-even or even be cash-flow positive with only domestic demand. This realistically could set the scene for 50,000 job losses in the hotel sector this year if there’s no support forth coming or international visitors are not allowed in.

One of the green shoots is the Alternative Local State Quarantine program, with over 60 island properties applying. While this program is meant to emulate the ASQ program in Bangkok, given there are no direct international flights to Phuket, the government needs wider support of a return of international travellers at a local level and implement inter-ministerial coordination before it could materialise. But this may take months.

Anthony Lark, President of the Phuket Hotels Association that represents 78 hotels in Phuket said: “The math simply doesn’t work with single-digit occupancies being reported. No amount of induced local demand can prevent the dramatic continued loss of jobs and rapidly eroding financial crisis for owners and operators. We strongly advocate a safe, pragmatic, and strategic reopening for foreign travellers.”

 

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9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. Avatar

    murika

    Friday, September 25, 2020 at 12:45 pm

    why are you lying, payut has already organised all for arrival of super rich tourist in 2021, he say they will come and spend 800 k bath per month, that will compensate largely for the 40 millions tourist lost, how dare you defy the vision of our supreme leader, he know all, and life unfold over his willpower.

    • Avatar

      Stefan Svensson

      Friday, September 25, 2020 at 3:02 pm

      Oh yes! Sorry but you have to wake up now! Who told you this lie ?
      Better keep it closed so they have a reason to wish the tourist will come back.

    • Avatar

      Sami

      Saturday, September 26, 2020 at 12:39 am

      You must be the dumbest person not only in Thailand but in the entire universe…Dont make a fool of yourself and learn to keep your mouth shut and accept facts…no matter how bitter the truth is about your government!

      • Avatar

        murika

        Saturday, September 26, 2020 at 11:23 am

        i thought my comment was quite obviously ironic, maybe you are dumber than me to not understand it !

  2. Avatar

    Mark Davies

    Friday, September 25, 2020 at 1:04 pm

    …..”given there are no direct international flights to Phuket”

    What about Singapore, Hong Kong, KL, India, Russia, Middle East, China, Korea

  3. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Friday, September 25, 2020 at 1:14 pm

    Are these the same hotels that grabbed the foreigners’ deposits when they could not travel to Thailand?
    Are these the hotels that profited when foreigners could not leave Phuket?

  4. Avatar

    Jason

    Friday, September 25, 2020 at 4:49 pm

    What is happening in Phuket is the logical conclusion of the covid 19 lockdown of Thailand. The method of suppression and then eradication of the virus to a point where only foreign arrivals have it has seen Thailand with one of the lowest numbers of active cases in the world. The culture of obedience has made this possible. The people do what they are told to do. But at what cost?

    We are now seeing the cost. Closed businesses, people unemployed, some starving. What we haven’t seen to date is a balance. A balance between peoples livelihoods and control of the virus. So far, the virus has control of everything and livelihoods are being sacrificed to maintain a zero community transmission situation. (I do have my doubts about the “Zero”. Without widespread testing of people who may have symptoms, how do you really know?).

    The choice to achieve a balance rests, like it or not, with the government. But if the government does nothing and people continue to close businesses, lose jobs and starve, things might reach a critical point. I do hope that the government will quickly move to devise a plan where foreign tourists can enter at a rate that willboth keep the country safe and at the same time allow it people to return to their livelihoods.

  5. Avatar

    EdwardV

    Saturday, September 26, 2020 at 2:38 am

    The only way to help most of these hotels is to reopen the country in a safe but quick and large way. Granted not an easy thing to do, but there is no other way. Just giving them low cost loans will just postpone the inevitable bankruptcy. They are in the business of renting rooms to tourists and since the domestic scheme failed miserably there is only one other alternative. So the only question then is can Thailand open up fast enough, safe enough and in a large enough number to save them before it’s too late.

  6. Avatar

    Nipral

    Saturday, September 26, 2020 at 3:03 pm

    Thanks to the moronic government’s plans (compulsory expensive inappropriate quarantine,
    fake insurance, charter flights, and probably more to come)the 2020/2021 high season is lost. We have all made our bookings without considering Thailand. The next one will probably be alike and so on…..
    Incompetence and corruption drive nowhere but to civil war.
    Nevertheless people in Thailand are starving and suffer.
    The PM and his shameless followers have food on their plate, roof over the head and increasing substantial bank accounts. As Trumpy would say “it is what it is” !!!!

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American arrested for alleged murder in Chiang Mai has past record of abuse in Colorado

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Photo via Facebook/ตำรวจภูธรจังหวัดน่าน

The American man who was recently arrested for allegedly murdering his pregnant Thai wife in Chiang Mai had been sentenced to 2 years of probation back in 2019 on assault charges after his gun went off while he was threatening a woman in Colorado. A report from the Associated Press says it appears to be the same woman.

Jason Matthew Balzer, 32, had initially faced attempted murder charges for assaulting a woman in Longmont, Colorado, but those charges were dropped. A Boulder District Attorney’s Office spokesperson told a local reporter in a previous report that “in every case, we need witnesses to testify at a trial. Unfortunately, due to issues with the victim’s availability, the higher charge had to be dismissed.”

The victim had called the police saying Jason had asked to have sex and then assaulted her when she said “no,” according to the arrest report. She told police he hit her face and slammed her head onto the bed’s headboard several times before taking out a revolver and threatening to kill her, the report says. The woman told police she pushed the gun and it went off near her head.

Balzer pled guilty to third-degree assault in December 2019 and was sentenced to 2 years of probation. In December 2020, Jason was arrested in Colorado after police allegedly found 73 guns in his van. Possession of firearms is a violation of probation. It’s unclear when Jason travelled to Thailand.

Since the case in Colorado involved a victim of domestic violence, the name was redacted in public court records, but a spokesperson for the District Attorney’s Office told AP reporters that the victim has the same name as the woman killed in Thailand. Based on photographs, the spokesperson says they appear to be the same person.

On Thursday, Jason was arrested in Chiang Mai. Reports say he confessed to stabbing and killing his wife, 32 year old Pitchaporn Kidchop, who was 3 months pregnant. Police say Jason sealed his wife’s body in a garbage bin before taking it to the woods about 5 kilometres away. In Thailand, a murder charge carries a maximum penalty of death.

Local police posted photos of the crime reenactment on Facebook. In Thailand, it is common for suspects to admit to crimes and reenactment the crimes to law enforcement officers and the press.

 

SOURCE: Time Call | Associated Press

 

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Saturday Covid UPDATE: 2,419 new infections and 19 deaths, provincial totals

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Stock photo by Mufid Majnun for Unsplash

The tally for Covid-related infections and deaths reported over the past 24 hours reports 19 new deaths and 2,419 cases. There have been 52,411 confirmed Covid-19 infections in the recent outbreak with more than 16,000 cases in Bangkok, the epicentre of infections. Since the start of the pandemic last year, the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration has reported a total of 81,274 Covid-19 infections and 382 coronavirus-related deaths.

Thailand now has 29,473 active Covid-19 cases. Most patients with Covid-19 are asymptomatic or have mild symptoms. More than 1,000 Covid-19 patients are in critical condition including 380 people on ventilators.

Out of the 2,419 new cases, more than 1,000 cases were detected in Bangkok. Most cases were local transmissions or detected through active case finding.

Of the 19 new coronavirus-related deaths, most were in Bangkok and surrounding provinces. The majority of deaths were the elderly and many of them contracted the virus from infected family members or friends.

Over the past week, new clusters of Covid-19 infections have been detected in crowded Bangkok neighbourhoods, including the Khlong Toey slum. Poor communities in Bangkok have been seen as vulnerable to coronavirus outbreaks as people live in close proximity to each other and many cannot afford to stop working to abide by stay-at-home orders. CCSA spokesperson Natapanu Nopakun says active case finding in Bangkok clusters have been “beefed up.”

With cases in Bangkok still on the rise, the current disease control measures imposed in the capital will be extended until May 17. Schools and entertainment venues must remain closed.

Provinces with the highest number of new confirmed cases…

Province New Cases Total since April 1
Bangkok 1,112 18,029
Nonthaburi 217 3,249
Samut Prakan 114 3,016
Prachuap Kiri Khan 100 1,267
Pathum Thani 93 1,192
Samut Sakhon 77 1,376
Chon Buri 72 3,200
Prachin Buri 63 284
Ranong 50 379
Surat Thani 35 1,070

Districts in Bangkok with the highest number of confirmed cases…

District New cases
Khlong Toey 37
Ratchathewi 26
Pathumwan 24
Bang Kapi 13
Chatuchak 11
Don Mueang 9
Lat Phrao 9
Dusit 8
Yan Nawa 7
Wang Thonglang 7

Saturday Covid UPDATE: 2,419 new infections and 19 deaths, provincial totals | News by Thaiger

 

Saturday Covid UPDATE: 2,419 new infections and 19 deaths, provincial totals | News by Thaiger

Active Covid-19 cases in Thailand as of 7 May 2021, according to Worldometers.

 

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Thailand to remain on US Trade watch list over online piracy and intellectual property violations

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Stock photo by Christin Hume for Unsplash

Thailand is to remain on the US Trade Representative’s watch list as it tackles intellectual property violations and online piracy. Director-general of the Intellectual Property Department, Vuttikrai Leewiraphan, says the USTR made the announcement in its annual report that was released April 30. The report includes findings for more than 100 trading partners after engaging with stakeholders and further research.

“The US government admires the Thai government’s and Commerce Ministry’s progress in preventing IP infringement, the continuous development of IP protection and crackdowns on violations in both the offline and online markets.”

The report indicated that Thailand continues to make progress by seizing counterfeit and pirated goods and has increased efforts to combat the sale of those goods online, and publishing its efforts. It also noted that Thailand increased its efforts against online piracy, through intra-agency coordination, but concerns still remain as counterfeit and pirated goods are still readily available in markets and online.

In addition, the US has urged Thailand to ensure that amendments to its Copyright Act address concerns expressed by the US and other foreign governments and stakeholders, including overly broad technological protection measure exceptions, procedural obstacles to enforcement against unauthorised camcording, and unauthorised collective management organisations.

Vuttikrai has pledged to work with US agencies to build an IP work plan to remove Thailand from all US lists in the future. He said IP rights protections should lead to more Thais benefitting from IP, leading to an increase in the country’s competitiveness and economic development. But he has not released details on the counter-measures to be taken that would ensure the government is continuing to make strides towards addressing the issue of counterfeit and pirated goods even further.

Last year, the USTR released its annual report on Intellectual Property Protection and Review of Notorious Markets for Counterfeiting and Piracy, with Thailand being included among 22 other countries on the Watch List:

  • Barbados, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Guatemala, Kuwait, Lebanon, Mexico, Pakistan, Paraguay, Peru, Romania, Thailand, Trinidad & Tobago, Turkey, Turkmenistan, the United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan and Vietnam

SOURCE: Bangkok Post/USTR.gov

 

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