Bangkok governor Aswin Kwanmuang said he was still unable to accept eatery operators’ request for their premises to open until 11pm. The alcoholic consumption rule should be relaxed on a step-by-step basis. If the COVID-19 situation proved to be stable with the eateries’ closing hour at 9pm, their operating hours could be extended by 1-2 hours later, Mr. Aswin said. (TNA)
“We will look at the overall assessment in terms of the alcohol and entertainment industry every 2 weeks. If the drinking hours affect the infection situation in some way, we have to come up with a new plan. But if there is no rise in infections and business owners and customers cooperate a re-evaluation of the hours may be considered as needed to 1 hour, 2 hours, or possibly 3 hours.” When being asked what to do if alcoholic beverages were ordered and not finished by 9:00 PM., the governor stated that customers could either “1. drink it up or 2. pour it out.” (Pattaya News)
So far no one has violated the restriction on alcohol consumption at eateries after such premises were allowed to sell and serve alcoholic drinks to customers, according to the national police chief. Pol Gen Suwat Jangyodsuk, commissioner of the Royal Thai Police Office, said that after the government allowed the sales and consumption of alcoholic beverages at eateries until 9pm every day, police and officials from concerned organizations including the Public Health Ministry inspected their operations to see if they observed the rule. He said officials did not find any violation and they were informed general people of the reasons why the measure was necessary.
Pol Gen Suwat also said that the closure of pubs, bars and karaoke shops continued and violators would face serious action from the police.
However the call remains from Thanakorn Kuptajit, secretary-general of the Thai Alcohol Beverage Business Association, saying that operators want the government to extend the alcohol consumption period from 9pm to 11pm in the four provinces — Bangkok, Krabi, Phangnga and Phuket, as reported by the Bangkok Post.
“Extending the period to 11pm will be better because longer hours will help increase income for wait staff, musicians, and other grassroots income-earners,” Mr Thanakorn said. “Most importantly, we want the government to meet for talks with vocational groups to discuss solutions to ease further restrictions while maintaining health safety standards.”
Mr Thanakorn further stated that the association and operators want the government to consider adding more provinces to the list of “blue zone” provinces to further welcome back foreign visitors.