Connect with us


Dasta holds public hearings in Phuket

Legacy Phuket Gazette



PHUKET CITY: The public organization pushing to develop the Ao Phuket mega-project off Saphan Hin is conducting public hearings to gauge reaction to the possibility of designating all of Phuket as a special administrative zone for sustainable tourism.

Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration (Dasta), a public organization whose board answers directly to the Prime Minister’s Office, held the first in a series of public hearings with representatives from Muang, Thalang and Kathu districts at the Royal Phuket City Hotel on June 30.

The Dasta board was last in Phuket in May last year, when Samak Sundaravej’s government gave the agency the green light to develop a 100-billion-baht mega-project, including a convention center and marina, in Phuket Bay.

Subsequent public hearings at the time led to a request for more of Phuket to come under Dasta’s purview.

Through its consultant firm Phisut Technology Company, Dasta has organized a series of ten public hearings this month to include all of Phuket’s local administration organizations.

The first of these was held at the Phuket Merlin Hotel on Monday, when the Dasta administrative framework was presented to representatives from Phuket City and Wichit municipalities.

Most of those present were in favor of putting Phuket City and Wichit under Dasta administration.

Dr Prasit Koysiripong, president of the Old Phuket Town Foundation, said a Dasta listing would improve the lives of Phuket City residents and aid in preserving the historically significant areas of the old quarter.

Thiti Sawisai, who heads the Phuket City Environment Protection Community, was less impressed.

Dasta’s stated objectives are laudable, but the agency seems to lack specific measures to meet these objectives, especially where environmental protection is concerned, he said.

“The project is unclear on how problems would actually be solved. Since Phuket is like a beloved daughter to us I really don’t agree with this project,” he said.

To this, city planner Somchai Poetiwongsajarn of Phisut Technology said specific measures would follow only after an area has been listed under Dasta and detailed studies conducted.

Two areas in Thailand are currently listed under Dasta: Koh Chang in Trat province and Chiang Mai Night Safari. Pattaya is also in the process of becoming listed.

“At first we wanted to list only the Ao Phuket project under Dasta, but now we are considering listing the entire island. It is up to the people to decide,” Mr Somchai said.

As the Dasta board reports to the Prime Minister’s Office, project reports and proposals are submitted for approval directly to Cabinet, thus bypassing normal bureaucratic procedures, he added.

Following the public hearings, Dasta could apply for a Phuket listing. Cabinet approval would take about three months, he said.

If granted, Dasta would then set up a local office and draw up a list of specific projects for implementation.

The office would be staffed in part by Phuket residents, who would be responsible for collecting the required information and liaising with local administrative bodies tasked with carrying out the work.

As for funding, income derived from Dasta projects would be remitted to local administrative bodies and not back to the central government, thus ensuring that local people benefit, he said.

Dasta executive board member Rajatin Syamananda, who has pushed for the Ao Phuket project since his time as Director General of the Interior Ministry’s Department of Town and Country Planning, also attended the hearing in Phuket City.

Mr Rajatin insists that any Dasta project, including Ao Phuket, will only move forward with solid public support. He is still keen on the Ao Phuket project, however.

The project would remove a layer of mud and tin mining dregs covering 10,000 rai of Phuket Bay and restore the bay’s natural sandy bed, he said.

Dasta listing would also help address the other pressing environmental issues facing Phuket City, such as solid waste management and wastewater treatment.

Problems in both of these areas are the result of poor city planning, he told the meeting.

— Atchaa Khamlo


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


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:

Weather6 hours ago

Flooded hospital in Chaiyaphum had to evacuates 40 patients

Thailand7 hours ago

300,000 more AstraZeneca vaccines donated from Japan arrived

Northern Thailand7 hours ago

Extremely rare earthstar mushrooms found in Phetchabun

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!

Weather8 hours ago

Flood warnings below of Chao Phraya Dam, across Thailand

Thailand10 hours ago

US calls meeting with Thai officials to resolve donated vaccines

Thailand11 hours ago

10 Burmese migrant workers arrested in Songkhla

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Thailand11 hours ago

Over 50 million vaccine doses administered in Thailand

Coronavirus (Covid-19)12 hours ago

Sunday Covid-19 Afternoon Update: Provincial Totals

World12 hours ago

China announces cryptocurrency trading is illegal

North East13 hours ago

Stolen 72 year old elephant returned to owner after 18 years

Thailand13 hours ago

Pattaya readjusts tourism goals for high season

Thailand14 hours ago

Phuket relaxes checkpoint requirements to help tourists and health officials

Phuket14 hours ago

Phuket Covid-19: 2 deaths, 4 Sandbox infections, 10k total cases

Thailand16 hours ago

Facebook page that claims to sell dog meat met with scorn on social media

Thailand17 hours ago

Thailand welcomes its first AI influencer, “AI Ailynn”

Thailand2 weeks 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

Thailand9 months ago

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

Thailand9 months ago

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

Thailand9 months ago

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

Thailand9 months ago

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