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Phuket meeting on joint Andaman province tourism initiative promises to share the profits

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Phuket meeting on joint Andaman province tourism initiative promises to share the profits | The Thaiger
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PHUKET: Woravat Auapinyakul, Minister to the Prime Minister’s Office, has told the Phuket Gazette that he expects the “Andaman – The World Experience” tourism initiative to attract more than 20 million tourists to the region.

At a meeting at Phuket Provincial Hall on Saturday to chart the progress of the tourism initiative, Mr Woravat said that intense competition within the tourism industry meant that the Andaman provinces needed a unique strategy to maintain visitor numbers.

“The best way would be to build on the good things the provinces already have, such as local culture, traditions and food,” said Mr Woravat.

“Andaman provinces are the country’s most popular tourist destinations. The “Andaman – The World Experience” will showcase to the world that, besides the white-sand beaches and beautiful sea, the Andaman also has historical, natural and cultural sights to experience,” he added.

The festival, to be launched by PM Yingluck Shinawatra at the Blue Elephant Royal Thai Cuisine in Phuket Town, will be held from November 9 to 11.

Also reported as the “Andaman Culture Festival”, the event will feature a carnival parade with each of the provinces presenting their own unique charms.

While in Phuket, Mr Woravat and his team conducted a quick inspection of the Blue Elephant venue to take in the seafood cooking show.

“Each province will design their own theme, focusing on the culture and history along with existing tourist attractions that best represent their location as a holiday destination,” said Mr Woravat.

“The festival will also showcase stage performances, exhibitions and activities arranged by each province, which will also produce an events calendar to inform visitors of special occasions going on in their province over the coming year,” he explained.

Mr Woravat believes that the project will add a definite boost to tourism in the Andaman region, stating that a figure of 20 million tourists was a realistic target.

Moreover, he sees the initiative ensuring that income is distributed to every facet of the Andaman tourism industry.

However, he issued a stern warning to unscrupulous operators: “Entrepreneurs who choose to take advantage of tourists will banned from being a part of the project and its activities.”

Mr Woravat went on to explain the various themes to be adopted by each of the coastal provinces.

Krabi, under the slogan “43,000 years Krabi, adventure wonderful Andaman” will give tourists the opportunity to discover a lost ancient empire and how ancient inhabitants lived.

Phang Nga province has chosen more recent times with “2,000 years Phang Nga, the wonderful beauty of the Andaman” being their slogan.

Not to be outdone, Phuket has focused on almost modern history in comparison, going with the slogan “400 years Phuket, the wonderful glamor of the Andaman”, which will focus on the Sino-Portuguese historical aspects of the city and the wide variety of nationalities and cultures found in Phuket.

Ranong has jumped forward in time too, with “150 years Ranong, the endless wonderful Andaman”. Ranong province is highlighting that they have the third-best mineral water in the world with natural resorts and spas to match

Trang province, by comparison, is bang up to date with “100 years Trang, the wonderful heaven of the Andaman”, focusing on their “many wonderful places” and range of different cultural dishes.

Satun, isn’t bothering with history and has gone for the simple “Wonderful Andaman romantic Satun, it’s a very beautiful province”.

Despite his efforts, it is likely that Mr Woravat will not be in a position to oversee the November event, as it was revealed today that he had been appointed as the government’s Minister for Science in the recent Cabinet reshuffle.

— Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Tourism

Phuket prepares to welcome first Chinese tourists in over 6 months

Maya Taylor

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Phuket prepares to welcome first Chinese tourists in over 6 months | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Jing Daily

The first group of tourists to arrive under Thailand’s new Special Tourist Visa scheme are expected to land in Phuket on October 8. The Bangkok Post reports that a flight from Guangzhou in southern China will carry 120 tourists, who will spend their first 14 days in alternative state quarantine. They are reported to be travelling under the government’s new STV.

Arrivals who do not pass the initial health screening will be transferred to specially chosen hospitals, as “Patients under Investigation”. Those who do pass the screening will be transported to alternative state quarantine once they’ve gone through immigration processing.

A Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration spokesperson says the resort islands of Phuket and Koh Samui will be the first to welcome travellers under the Special Tourist Via scheme. He pointed out that Guangzhou has not recorded any new cases of the Covid-19 virus for a prolonged period, meaning next week’s tourist arrivals are deemed “low risk”. His assertion is confirmed from the official figures at worldometer.info website recording world Covid-19 cases.

The CCSA reports that there will be a limit of 300 foreign tourists admitted each week, but this will be reviewed after the first phase of the re-opening. All arrivals will be subject to 14 day quarantine, although the Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn has suggested reducing this to 7 days eventually. The CCSA says they are not considering reducing the quarantine time at this stage.

Thiravat Hemachudha from the Thai Red Cross Emerging Infectious Disease Health Science Centre is not opposed to the idea.

“We can study this with foreign visitors who will arrive next month. During the 14 day quarantine they will be tested on the first, the seventh and the fourteenth day. If they are free of infections, we can shorten the quarantine to 7 days.”

However, not all are in agreement, with a doctor from Bangkok’s Chulalongkorn University cautioning against any shortening of the quarantine period.

Meanwhile, Phuket governor, Narong Woonsiew, says the province is ready to welcome the new arrivals, with Covid-19 labs in place at Phuket airport, and officials due to carry out a full dress rehearsal today.

Thanit Sermkaew, chief of the Phuket Public Health Office, says over 1,200 rooms at 9 hotels have been chosen as alternative state quarantine properties, with a total of 73 hotels, providing over 5,800 rooms, applying for consideration.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Phuket

Woman arrested for abandoning newborn baby on a bench in Phuket

Caitlin Ashworth

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Woman arrested for abandoning newborn baby on a bench in Phuket | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Siangtai/Newshawk Phuket

Police tracked down and arrested a Burmese woman who allegedly left her newborn baby on a bench in Phuket’s Patong area last week. The mother faces charges of abandoning a baby.

The newborn was left in a reusable shopping bag on a bench behind a Krungthai Bank branch. A woman in the area heard the baby crying and found the newborn in the bag along with a bottle of milk, diapers and clothing. Police reviewed surveillance camera footage shows a woman, police later identified as Ei Ei Phyu, leaving the bag on the bench.

Police say the woman gave birth on September 9 at a local hospital in Surat Thani’s Phun Phin district. Ei Ei allegedly took a van from Surat Thani to Phuket on September 22 and stayed with a friend in Patong. The early the next morning, she allegedly left her baby on the bench before boarding a bus back to Surat Thani.

Burmese workers in the Patong area told police Ei Ei used to work at a local Indian food restaurant before she moved to Surat Thani to work as a rubber tapper. Ei Ei allegedly told police she is not in the position to raise a child.

In earlier reports, police said the baby is healthy and does not appear to have any injuries.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Thailand

Phuket police arrest 6 after finding large amounts of methamphetamine in raid

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Phuket police arrest 6 after finding large amounts of methamphetamine in raid | The Thaiger

Phuket Provincial Police have arrested 6 people after finding large amounts of methamphetamine and other drugs during a raid. One suspect alone allegedly had 7.6 kilograms of crystal meth (ya ice) and over 12,500 methamphetamine pills (ya bah). 29 year old Surasak ‘Bank’ Wijit and 27 year old Panida ‘Mei’ Saeyang were arrested at an apartment car park in Soi Lookkaew, Moo 6, Rassada, in eastern Phuket, after they were found in possession of the drugs.

Police also found 2 mobile phones and a red Honda PCX, registered in Phuket, as evidence. Both suspects have been charged with posessing a Category 1 drug with the intent to sell.

Other suspects arrested at the same time include 36 year old from Chiang Rai, 42 year old Sarawut ‘An’ Srichanon, from Ranong and 31 year old Pornthep ‘Iew’ Thepchampa, who were charged with the same crimes in Chalong after police found more drugs in their possession. 33 year old Kamon ‘Kung’ Sae-ngow, was arrested as well after police found kratom juice and leaves at a house in Rassada. He was taken to Phuket City Police station and was charged with a Category 5 drug possession.

SOURCE:The Phuket News

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