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Phuket Gov and consuls to talk through problems



Phuket Gov and consuls to talk through problems | Thaiger

PHUKET CITY: Governor Wichai Phraisa-ngop has agreed to meet with the island’s honorary consuls every three months to discuss problems concerning tourists and expat residents.

The move follows a proposal by the German ambassador to Thailand yesterday.

German Ambassador Dr Hanns H. Schumacher met with the governor at 2pm at Phuket Provincial Hall.

Dr Schumacher was accompanied by German Honorary Consul Dirk Naumann and Dr Gerhard Melcher, a German orthopedic surgeon at Vachira Phuket Hospital. Dr Gerhard acted as interpreter.

Dr Schumacher told Gov Wichai that 250,000 German tourists travel to Thailand every year.

More collaboration between the Thai police and the German Embassy and Honorary Consulate in cases involving German expats and tourists is required, he said.

“A meeting between international honorary consuls in Phuket and you, the governor, should be held every three months to discuss problems involving tourists and expats,” he said.

“The meeting would help co-operation run more smoothly,” he added.

The governor was receptive to the idea.

“From now on, I will order the police to report to me every case in which a foreigner is involved,” he said. “Regarding the honorary consul meeting, that’s such a good idea. I’ll definitely arrange it.”

Moving on, Dr Schumacher told the governor how pleased he was that Satree Phuket School, the only school on the island teaching German, would send two exchange students to Germany.

He would like to see the German program maintained and expanded into other high schools, he said.

Tourism was also on the agenda.

Phuket is the second most popular destination in Thailand for German tourists, after Pattaya, Dr Schumacher said.

Gov Wichai told the ambassador that while he knew Phuket was popular with Germans, he would not be attending ITB Berlin 2010, one of the world’s biggest travel trade shows, next year.

“I think Phuket must get three things in order before I show off the island to the world,” he said. “Those three issues are convenient transport, a clean environment and an end to political fighting.”

Dr Schumacher closed the meeting by presenting a coffee cup to Gov Wichai as a gift from the German diplomatic mission.

“Every time you drink coffee from this cup, it will remind you of our meeting,” he said.

This year is the 150th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Thailand and Germany.

— Pimwara Choksakulpan


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

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