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Clear the streets! Bangkok Airways Phuket Half Marathon – August 5.

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Clear the streets! Bangkok Airways Phuket Half Marathon – August 5. | The Thaiger
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The streets are cleared, the roadways barren of traffic, all is ready.

The Bangkok Airways Phuket Half Marathon 2018 coming up on August 5 is more than just a race. It is a chance to observe the local way of life and appreciate the area’s landmarks and Sino-Portuguese architecture from a different perspective in busy Phuket town – from the streets themselves which will be cleared of traffic along the race route.

The ‘Bangkok Airways Phuket Half Marathon 2018’ features three race distances of five km, 10 km and 21 km. All three routes start and finish at Saphan Hin on the Phuket town shoreline and pass by the key landmarks of Saphan Hin Mining Monument and Surin Circle Clock Tower. The 10 km and 21 km routes take in Wichit Sangkaram Temple and Put Jor temple, while the 21 km route passes by Makham Mai Son Bay too.

The 21 km race starts at 5.15am and has a four-hour cut-off time. The 10-km race starts at 6.00am with a two-hour cut-off time and the five-km race starts at 6.15am with a one-hour cut-off time. There is also the Junior Clinic three km run starting at 06.30 hrs., with the awards ceremony following at 7.00am.

On the day before the event, August 4, participants need to collect their bib numbers and race kits at Limelight Avenue Phuket, between 10am-6pm.

Registration for runners can be done online at teelakow.com up until June 30, or until all 6,000 places are filled. Runners will receive a race shirt and bib, event medal and replenishments at drink and fruit stations located every two km along the race route.

The Bangkok Airways Phuket Half Marathon is the second of a series of four races in Thailand with other destinations including Lampang, Chiang Rai and Lanna (Chiang Mai).

Clear the streets! Bangkok Airways Phuket Half Marathon - August 5. | News by The Thaiger

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Phuket

Officials says no illegal land encroachment at Phuket’s Sri Panwa resort

Maya Taylor

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Officials says no illegal land encroachment at Phuket’s Sri Panwa resort | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Sri Panwa Phuket Resort - Sri Panwa Phuket

After coming in for some negative attention recently, the land title deeds of Phuket’s Sri Panwa resort have been investigated and found to be in order. The 5-star hotel first attracted the attention of netizens when its owner, Vorasit Issara, publicly criticised anti-government activist Panusaya Sithijirawattanakul, calling for her arrest. His Instagram tirade prompted outrage from those who support the current protest movement, with netizens calling for a boycott of his property and leaving several negative comments on various review sites.

Shortly after, the Civil Society for State Welfare called on the Social Security Office to clarify its investment in the resort’s trust fund. This was echoed by at least one opposition MP and anti-corruption activists.

Responding to the land rights issue, the Phuket Land Office has issued a statement to say the hotel does not occupy state land. The resort stands on 56 rai of prime real estate, overlooking Phuket’s south-eastern coast. The land office has confirmed its paperwork is all in order.

Meanwhile, it’s understood Charn Issara Development, owners of the property, have threatened to sue the resort’s critics for defamation.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Covid task force calls for extension to Thailand’s emergency decree

Maya Taylor

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Covid task force calls for extension to Thailand’s emergency decree | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Thai PBS World

Thailand’s Covid-19 task force is advising the government to extend the country’s state of emergency by a further month. The Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration plans to discuss the matter next Tuesday and put it to Cabinet for consideration on Wednesday.

The state of emergency, which has been extended several times since its introduction in March, is due to expire at the end of this month. However, the CCSA says an extension is vital to ensure various government agencies can work speedily to combat any threat from Covid-19, particularly as neighbouring countries experience a spike in infections.

Thailand has already taken steps to seal the porous border with Myanmar after a surge in cases means that country is now recording over 500 new infections a day.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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Tourism

Quarantine could be reduced to 7 days from November, if border re-opening succeeds

Maya Taylor

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Quarantine could be reduced to 7 days from November, if border re-opening succeeds | The Thaiger
Markus Winkler on Unsplash

Thailand’s Tourism and Sports Minister says the mandatory quarantine period for those arriving from overseas could be reduced to 7 days if there is no spike in Covid-19 infections after the border re-opens to limited arrivals from October.

Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn says more details on the planned Special Tourist Visa will be made available following a Cabinet meeting on Tuesday. The STV is expected to grant entry to long-stay arrivals from October 1. Visitors can then extend their stay by 90 days twice, meaning a stay of nearly 9 months in total.

The government is currently being extremely cautious with its plans to re-open the borders to international arrivals. However, in a Bangkok Post report today, Phiphat says that if the first 2 groups of arrivals, 300 foreign tourists in total, fulfil the 14-day quarantine period without testing positive for the virus, it may be possible to increase the number of visitors granted entry to the Kingdom.

“Only 300 tourists per week will not be enough to fill up the whole supply chain and help operators. However, the figure has to comply with the capacity of the healthcare workforce from the Public Health Ministry to prepare swab tests.”

It’s understood the Tourism Ministry has been in talks with private hospitals about supplying additional manpower to facilitate the testing being carried out at airports. Another option is to test arrivals at quarantine facilities, in order to avoid holdups at airport arrival terminals. Currently, the Phuket Provincial Health Office has the ability to conduct 1,000 tests a day.

Should the gradual re-opening in October pass without a significant spike in Covid-19 cases, Phiphat says the government may consider halving the 14-day quarantine period from mid-November. Visitors will still be required to be tested prior to arrival, several times while in quarantine, and again before being released.

“In the event there are 5 positive cases from 300 tourists, the plan to welcome foreigners has to move forward anyway. But we will set up new alternative plans to cope with the situation.”

A reduction in the quarantine period may succeed in attracting more visitors, particularly given the high cost of staying at certain alternative state quarantine facilities, which tourists must foot the bill for themselves. An increase in foreign arrivals is seen as essential to the recovery of the tourism sector in areas currently struggling to survive since the border shutdown 6 months ago.

The Tourism Council of Thailand has visited places such as Phuket, Chiang Mai, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Udon Thani, and Rayong, to talk to local business owners. In presenting its findings to the Tourism and Sports Ministry, TCT president, Chairat Trirattanajarasporn, says the government must find a solution to help the tourism sector. It predicts that once the global Covid situation is brought under control, foreign arrivals to Thailand should reach the 60 million mark and contribute 25% of the country’s GDP by 2023.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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