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The economic impact of closing down Maya Bay for four months

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The economic impact of closing down Maya Bay for four months | The Thaiger
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So what impact will closing down Maya Bay for four months have? Will it be cataclysmic for Phi Phi and Krabi tourism? Will tourist operators survive?

Pullawat Pitigraisorn from SCB’s Economic Intelligence Centre has done the sums and estimates that tourist earnings for Krabi Province will only suffer a 6 percent drop as tourists will continue to come to the popular tourist region but simply choose other destinations instead of Maya Bay. They expect tourists will still flock to Ko Poda, Sa Morakot, Talay Waek and Railway beach to compensate for the closure of the popular postcard beach.

Hat Noppharat Thara-Mu Ko Phi Phi marine officials are closing down access to the beach from June to September 30 this year. Although they cite the reason is to provide time for the popular tourist trap to ‘recover’ its ecology the move is just a token offering with environmentalists saying that any real recovery of the area’s ecology will take decades, not a few months in low season.

Officials say tour boats will still be able to enter the bay and observe the beach from the bay but not go onto the beach. They are also planning to restrict access to Maya Bay when it re-opens to just 2,000 a day instead of the current numbers of up to 5,000 a day. In practice this will be difficult to enforce and, if the past provides any forecast, enforcement is unlikely to be consistent.

The Economic Intelligence Centre is hoping that the private sector and government officials come up with a long-term plan to resolve the problem of providing access to popular tourist beauty spots but not killing the golden goose with too much tourist ‘love’. They suggest a sustainable solution needs to be found otherwise there will be enforced closures of popular tourist destinations like Boracay Island in The Philippines (which has been closed for six months under orders from President Duterte).

Their report is also recommending that a list of lesser-known destinations be prepared and marketed by tour operators for the many other islands and beaches in the region. Controversially the EIC are also recommending raising the entry fees to locations like Maya Bay to help attract more ‘quality’ tourists.

 

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Krabi

Missing man’s body found in Krabi forest, wife believes he was killed

Caitlin Ashworth

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Missing man’s body found in Krabi forest, wife believes he was killed | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Thairath

The body of a missing man was found by locals walking through a forest in Krabi’s Plai Phraya district. The man’s wife believes he was murdered, but police have not announced if they will open a homicide investigation, saying they are waiting for autopsy results.

47 year old Arun Sittisang went missing in May. Authorities who initially examined the body believe he has been dead for at least 3 months. His wife, 47 year old Sujit Kaewwihok, travelled from Nakhon Si Thammarat to identify the body and says she thinks Arun was killed.

Arun’s 21 year old daughter says her father contacts the family on a regular basis since he often travels, but he suddenly stopped calling in May.

SOURCES: Nation Thailand| Thairath

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Thailand

Cruise ships and yachts to dock in Thailand, visitors to enter on Special Tourist Visa

Caitlin Ashworth

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Cruise ships and yachts to dock in Thailand, visitors to enter on Special Tourist Visa | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Unsplash: Josiah Weiss

Cruise ships and yachts will be allowed to dock in Thailand and visitors will be allowed disembark under the Special Tourist Visa. The new measure hasn’t been made official yet, but it will go into effect 30 days after it’s published in the Royal Gazette.

The Cabinet approved the new guidelines yesterday which allows captains, crew and passengers travelling from countries considered at low risk for spreading Covid-19 to dock in Thailand and enter the country, according to deputy government spokesperson Traisuree Taisaranakul.

Visitors must go through a 14 day quarantine. Those on yachts will quarantine onboard before stepping onto Thai soil, according to the Bangkok Post. They must also have Covid-19 health insurance of $100,000 USD as well as local health and accident insurance. Proof of advance payment for anchoring the liner will also have to be provided.

The Special Tourist Visa allows a 90 day stay that can be renewed twice, adding up to around 9 months. So far, only 2 flights of foreigners on the Special Tourist Visa have arrived after a 7 month ban on international tourists.

SOURCES: Bangkok Post | Nation Thailand

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Thailand

Fuel tanker explodes after collision in Buri Ram

Caitlin Ashworth

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Fuel tanker explodes after collision in Buri Ram | The Thaiger
PHOTO: MGR Online

A fuel tanker has exploded after a collision with a trailer truck, causing both vehicles to be engulfed in flames in a series of explosions. Fuel from the 40,000-litre tank spilled out onto the road, spreading about 1 kilometre to nearby homes and into the sewers. People trying to douse the spreading flames found they were just pushing the flaming fuel further down the road, 20 cars, motorcycles and tuk tuks parked along the road were damaged or destroyed in the fire. Many people were injured, but there is no exact count.

The fuel tanker truck and the trailer truck collided on Highway 24 in the Isaan province Buri Ram. The drivers were able to flee before the first explosion. There were a series of explosions as the fuel spread and nearby residents fled their homes. People tried to put the flames out with tap water, but fire continued to spread.

50 fire engines responded to the fire and the road was closed off for a radius of 5 kilometres. It took firefighters more than 4 hours to extinguish the fire. The oil company was called to safely unload 30,000 litres of fuel that was left in the tanker.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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