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Patong nightlife is suffering from revenue pressure, says a business leader

Avoid Patong Bar Strike, Extend Nightlife Hours to 3am, says Prab Keesin

Monday, November 10, 2014
PHUKET: Nightclub owner and Phuket businessman Prab Keesin called tonight for a sensible approach to problems in Patong that could be fixed by extending hours rather than a three-day strike by venue owners.

''We should have an agreement with officials to open an extra hour until 3am to try to make money,'' Khun Prab, son of the late Mayor Pian Keesin, told Phuketwan.

Earlier today, venue owners who preferred to remain anonymous called for nightspots and bars to close on Friday, Saturday and Sunday in protest at demands for extra corrupt payments from a government organisation that wasn't among the 14 or so already accepting graft in Patong.

''We still have corruption but it's not getting worse than before,'' said Khun Prab, who understands that corrupt payments have a long tradition in the west coast holiday town.

Phuket's tourists are the ones who always pay for the corruption, but of late numbers for nightlife venues are falling so the idea of paying more graft does not appeal to venue owners.

''Closing venues is no help,'' Khun Prab said tonight. ''Bars should open and do business as normal.

''But we need to stay open until 3am, not 2am, to try to keep more people in work and make more money to cover costs. The extra one hour would help a lot.''

Khun Prab said venue owners in Patong accepted that the safety and security of tourists was a priority.

''But we also hope that officials understand that many people who come to Patong want to enjoy the nightlife,'' he said. ''It's not sensible when people have to pay staff to close down venues in a protest.''

A strike by the bars would have coincided with the first three days of the Asian Beach Games.

Comments

Comments have been disabled for this article.

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All Belly-Dancers will have to rest during the three-day strike by venue owners.

Posted by Whistle-Blower on November 10, 2014 23:01

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At almost 2 EUR per bottle of Beer (happy hour), I'm not surprised there's hardly any tourists. Prices have sky-rocketed beyond the pocket that one would expect in a developing country. Patong really has outpriced itself.

Posted by reader on November 10, 2014 23:42

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Like a strike is going to make a dent!...go ahead and strike...lets see who holds out longer

Posted by sky on November 11, 2014 03:55

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Here's a novel idea.
Why not stop paying corruption money to the original 14 government departments?
Isn't stopping corruption a priority for the present leader of Thailand?

Posted by sir burr on November 11, 2014 06:46

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Why should Patong night venues be any different to those in rest of Thailand? All close at 2 a.m. or in some cases 1 a.m. depending on local authority clamp downs.

'but of late numbers for nightlife venues are falling' - does that not tell you that times are changing & like any other industry, if you have too much of something, then the weakest or poorest have to close. It's simple maths.

Posted by Logic on November 11, 2014 07:20

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@ sir burr. Thats the best comment I have read for ages. Well done sir. Can the pigs in the trough do it, I doubt it, no Mrs B chutney.

Posted by Duncan B on November 11, 2014 08:35

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No corrupt payments for 3 days it a interesting approach and concept with a doubtful big enough impact guess their looking for a road to go down & will try anything maybe a bar owners union should be formed least get them all to the same table to discuss there issues.

Posted by slickmelb on November 11, 2014 10:04

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just stop the corruption, hidden cameras taking payments send to the media and all social media if the bar owners have any [courage].
They want to stick together for a strike then stick together and stop the corruption

Posted by Michael on November 11, 2014 11:14

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Most venues already stay open until 3 a.m. anyway. Witholding the small monthly payment would present "difficulties". I've forbidden my cashier to make any other payments, although as yet, she hasn't been asked. Not sure what all the fuss is about.
And @ reader - Bangla is as busy as ever, although it must be said, there's more walkers and gawpers than real customers.

Posted by jimbo34 on November 11, 2014 11:16

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You lack the intelligence to understand how ridiculous you are. I'm pretty sure you think we are the idiots while it is pretty much the opposite. You are separated from the truth by not only your ego but also language barrier and our politeness. Could you see yourself for just one second the way we see you, you would insta lose your face to yourself.

Posted by OpenYourEyes on November 11, 2014 12:00

Editor Comment:

Er, did you have someone in mind for your comment, OYE? Are you even on the right thread? As this is your first comment, perhaps you need a GPS? Or a nanny?

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All bar owners without exception should stop paying the corrupt government officers and then see what happens.
Make a big fuss, name the government offices demanding corrupt payments, write to the Prime Minister, write to the national papers, have it exposed on television, make life for the corrupt officers difficult.
To extend opening hours simply to pay off the corrupt officers is the wrong approach

Posted by Paul on November 11, 2014 13:07

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What a joke! The entertainment venues can stay open one hour later ......so that can make more money ....... so they can afford to pay the increased level of bribery being demanded!
Hmmmm.
No thought of perhaps trying to prosecute the bribe takers offering what I presume is the equivalent of protection money! No, let's try to carry on business as usual and milk these tourists for everything we can get!

Posted by Anonymous on November 11, 2014 16:13

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Pull these people to public with photo, name and organisation and money, everything you can find out make it public. But i think, even when the corruption is gone, the prices stay at the same level. Taxis teached us clearly.

Posted by Sosolala on November 11, 2014 23:09

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@ Phuket Wan. Stop all comments and just give us the news. People like kurt, sue, wb, etc can then discuss the days news in the crapper or their local pub. I and many others would just like your news please. Thank you for great reporting.

Posted by Duncan B on November 12, 2014 07:47

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This is Thailand.. these are thai people. Army got power. Army wants his piece of cake. They deserve what they have.

Posted by dave on November 12, 2014 08:15

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Do we now 'suffer' in Patong a 3 day bar strike or not? Or was it just again a publicity stunt, conducted by influential people?

Posted by Kurt on November 15, 2014 13:06

Editor Comment:

Closing on time is what we hear.


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