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Phuket officials still figuring out 9pm alcohol curfew, already enforced but not yet a regulation

Phuket officials still figuring out 9pm alcohol curfew, already enforced but not yet a regulation

PHUKET: Phuket provincial officials today were still trying to figure out how to implement the 9pm curfew on the sale and consumption of alcohol in pubs and bars registered as restaurants from Jan 15 onwards, as mandated by the CCSA on Friday, in a province where pubs and bars have already been operating as restaurants for months.

By The Phuket News

Monday 10 January 2022, 07:00PM

The CCSA (Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration) on Friday announced that entertainment venues, including pubs, bars and karaoke establishments, in the provinces and areas now designated as “Blue Zones” could now register as “restaurants” and reopen to receiving customers.

Operators have until Jan 15 to be approved by the provincial authorities, and must be SHA+ certified venues, explained Natapanu Nopakun, Deputy Director-General of the Department of Information and Deputy Spokesman of the Foreign Affairs Ministry.

If approved, the venues must stop selling alcohol and stop allowing the consumption of alcohol on the premises at 9pm, he said.

However, that option is only available to entertainment venue operators in the “Blue Zones”, which are located in 18 provinces. Some Blue zones, such as Phuket, comprise the whole province.

In the remaining 69 provinces, pubs and bars must remain closed, and the sale and consumption of alcohol at restaurants is banned.

However, pubs and bars in Phuket have already been openly trading as restaurants for months, a factor never publicly recognised by officials in Bangkok.

The quandary that Phuket Governor Narong Woonciew and other leading provincial officials are now facing is how to implement a national order that is already rendered pointless by the de facto situation in the province.

Phuket Property

According to a report of today’s meeting of the Phuket Provincial Communicable Disease Committee, posted by the Phuket office of the Public Relations Department (PR Phuket), the committee today was “considering the draft amendment to the Phuket Provincial Order on the consumption of liquor or alcoholic beverages in food or beverage outlets located in the tourism pilot area not later than 21.00”.

The other conditions of pubs and bars being allowed to open as restaurants ‒ and hence, technically in legal terms under the understanding of national officials, be able to serve alcohol ‒ were also being considered to be brought into effect under a provincial order.

While Phuket officials ponder how to word the amendment to the provincial order, the lack of clarity from Bangkok officials regarding pubs and bars in Phuket already operating as restaurants has left a gaping hole in understanding of what rule is already in effect.

The 9pm alcohol curfew may or may not be in effect yet, as officials have yet to announce whether or not it applies to Phuket already - or whether a provincial order is actually needed.

Regardless, pubs and bars in popular expat areas have already “chosen” to close at 9pm.

Meanwhile, Patong Police last night ensured that venues along Bangla Rd stopped serving alcohol and escorted patrons out of some establishments to enforce the rule, while other venues in the nearby area were allowed to remain trading.

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Kurt | 11 January 2022 - 09:23:09

Omicron seems to be less deadly, but WHO warns us that it may not seen as 'mild'. Omicron is also able to damage one's organs for life, preventing getting your 'old' health back.

Kurt | 11 January 2022 - 00:21:31

What a dis-orderly mess on Phuket with not by BKK recognised Bar-->Restaurant without kitchen transformation.. Food just ordered, delivery by Panda and Crab. Did officialdom inform Covid-19/Omicron to stay out of these fake restaurarants till 9PM? Funny, Bangla sweeped, but other venues nearby allowed to remain trading.  Is there now nothing they can do the right way?

maverick | 10 January 2022 - 22:10:37

Headless chickens 

lelecuneo | 10 January 2022 - 21:19:52 one know antyhing..and that last sentence...what a disgrace

DeKaaskopp | 10 January 2022 - 20:16:37

What a boring place Phuket will become if they enforce the 9.00 pm closure. More and more tourists will cancel their trips.And so it will affect all kind of businesses.And all because of mild, flu like effects. What a madness.

Fascinated | 10 January 2022 - 19:35:01

Its a farce- one bar on the main street  in Kamala  was still going strong at 6am this morning. Wouldn't have taken Insp Clouseau to work out what was going on.


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