The president of the Office of the Public Sector Development Commission met with 80 small hotels in Patong to address how badly handled Covid-19 laws had cost them their buildings and businesses. Even during the “sandbox,” when larger hotels and chains were allowed to accept guests, many of the Patong hotels were not allowed to reopen. As a result, many of the hotels were foreclosed upon after accruing debt and becoming unable to pay. The delegation, which represented more than 200 hotels, walked the OPDC around Patong to witness some of the hotels that had gone into foreclosure, where premises had been confiscated, everything inside had been sold at auction, and companies had been completely destroyed. Many previously existing businesses were spared from being compelled to shut down because they couldn’t meet the building standards of the Hotels Act and were unable to operate as hotels. They were indebted and faced foreclosure as soon as they were unable to accommodate travelers.

He promised to take swift action and mentioned that they were reviewing numerous submissions that were similar in nature. The Chairperson of the OPDC subcommittee that handles the development and marketing of high-quality tourism in Patong joined the president, Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam, when they met with irate hotel owners. Even when things started to get back to normal and they were made illegal to operate, the epidemic destroyed many tiny motels. The OPSC president claimed that the government was aware of the issue and that several small hotel owners had been in touch with him to express the same sentiment. They demanded that the government respond right away. They criticized the restrictions governing hotel reopening and requested a waiver so that small hotels may reopen in Patong. They have been advocating for this since the Phuket Sandbox was introduced at least a year ago. They are unable to even sell their properties since the buyer would be required to settle the debt accrued under Covid-19 before they could lawfully occupy the space. Boutique hotels formally requested assistance for small hotels in August of last year to help them satisfy Covid-19 requirements like SHA+ by upgrading to the standards required by the Hotels Act.

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