Duty-free zone hits bureaucratic speed bump

PHUKET: The committee responsible for drafting a plan to establish a duty-free zone in Phuket has postponed its October meeting in order to give new members time to review the details of the scheme.

No date has been set for the next committee meeting.

The delay follows the latest reshuffle in Thailand’s bureaucracy, during which key members of the committee were transferred and replaced with newcomers.

Committee coordinator Surachart Janthawatcharagorn, who is also head of Phuket Customs, said the committee had been scheduled to hold a final review session this month, after which members were expected to approve the existing draft.

The new committee line-up, which will continue to be chaired by Deputy Finance Minister Suvit Measinsee, includes the national directors of several departments: Sathit Limpongpan of Customs; Sirote Swasdipanich of the Revenue Department; and Utid Tamvatin of the Excise Department.

“The draft plan for the duty-free zone in Phuket is already laid out. It is just awaiting approval by this committee. I assure you that this project will continue to move forward,” said K. Surachart.

Phuket News
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