Connect with us

Opinion

Opinion: Phuket chosen as ‘model city'”¦ again

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published

 on 

PHUKET: While the media narrative abroad regarding our Land of Smiles has focused on such lofty issues as democratic development, freedom of expression, human rights and so forth, it is somehow reassuring to know that here on the ground the saying plus ็a change, plus c’est la m๊me chose still seems to apply as far as daily life is concerned.

The phrase means ‘the more things change, the more they stay the same’. That certainly seems to be the case in Thailand.

A recent example comes to us straight from that bureaucracy of all bureaucracies, the Ministry of Interior. Phuket has once again been chosen as a ‘pilot province’, this time for the ministry’s Pracharath Rak Samakkee project.

This ‘Civil State Loves Unity’ (our translation) project is highly reminiscent of many other lavish central government projects aimed at the ‘grassroots’ of Thai society by previous administrations. The stated aim is to help small and medium-sized enterprises in three areas designated as strategic: agriculture, ‘product processing’ and community tourism.

Phuket might well be the most unlikely of candidates among Thailand’s 77 provinces to serve as the ‘model’ province for such a populist project.

For a start, few provinces apart from Bangkok have a smaller percentage of land under agricultural use. ‘Product processing’ is also rather hard to find here, unless one includes the crafting of everyday household objects into recreational drug-taking paraphernalia. And ‘community tourism’ is curious indeed, given the sheer number of package tours we suffer on a daily basis. The homebred population of Phuket is probably outnumbered by outsiders by a factor of at least 2:1.

Three months after its launch, the project is literally just starting to bear fruit. This comes in the form of 50 ‘homegrown’ Phuket pineapples, now on advance-purchase offer at just 1,500 baht each – somewhat over the going local market rate.

The price has been defended by the project team on the basis that a durian from Nonthaburi once fetched 210,000 baht. While it is undeniably challenging to argue with anyone who might deploy this type of logic, such reasoning does seem to be in the news quite often here in paradise.

But of course the real reason that Phuket is always and inevitably the first choice for pilot projects has little to do with grassroots development. No, it’s rather more tied in with the fact that our emerging Pineapple Hub is, at least in the eyes of the desk-bound bureaucrats of Bangkok, still the perfect island getaway from life in the big mango.

 

Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forums
🔔 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join YouTube for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram

image

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand5 hours ago

Oct 1 reopening NOT confirmed, Kpop star sparks frenzy for Thai meatballs |Thailand News Today

Hua Hin6 hours ago

Final arguments Tuesday on dual pricing suit against Health Ministry

World7 hours ago

Texas lawyer dressed as Halloween’s Michael Myers to spread hurricane cheer

Welcome back to Thailand!

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in Thailand - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages!

Thailand7 hours ago

The Last Dance feat. Mike | Thaiger Bites | September 17

Thailand8 hours ago

No “October reopening” plan has been approved – CCSA

Thailand8 hours ago

Public Health Ministry defends October 1 reopening

image
Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Coronavirus (Covid-19)8 hours ago

Friday Covid Update: 14,555 new cases; provincial totals

Crime8 hours ago

Torture and forced disappearances bills pass House vote 368-0

Bangkok9 hours ago

Bangkok Governor: NO reopening October 15 despite PM plans

Pattaya9 hours ago

Thai-Russian 4 year old girl drowns in Pattaya home pool

Phuket10 hours ago

New centre proposed to provide ATKs cheap at Phuket entrance

Thailand10 hours ago

Morning Top Stories | Covid Free setting, Pattaya bars might not open | September 17 |

Thailand10 hours ago

Thailand Daily Covid Update | Thursday, September 17 |

World10 hours ago

Foreign Minister Don to US for meetings with UN, ASEAN, more

Thailand11 hours ago

The Future of Medical Tourism in Thailand | Good Morning Thailand LIVE | Episode 91

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14 | Thaiger
Thailand3 days ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism7 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism7 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism7 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending