Road Show Returns
The Pattaya business community, the Tourism Authority of
Thailand Region 3 and Thai Airways organized the "Pattaya Road Show" to
Australia and New Zealand from June 19-28. The 27-person team circulated information and
announced new developments made in Pattaya to tourist agencies in the cities of Melbourne
and Sydney Australia, and Auckland, New Zealand.
The Road Show was led by Setthaphan Bhuddhani, Director of the Tourism
Authority of Thailand Region 3, and city council member Sutham Phanthusak. Sutham replaced
Pattayas Mayor who decided to withdraw from the trip due to erroneous accusations
made by a local Thai language newspaper.
Other prominent members of the Road Show included Chatchawal
Supachayanont, President of the Thai Hotel Association Eastern Chapter, and Surat
Mekavarakul, President of the Pattaya Business and Tourism Association (PBTA).
All who returned from the Road Show expressed high expectations of
seeing positive results coming back to the entire Pattaya business community resulting
from the trip.
The first presentation was made in the form of table top sales at the
Chang Thong Restaurant (Golden Elephant) in Auckland, New Zealand. Representatives from 70
tourist agencies in New Zealand were also shown a video presentation introducing Pattaya,
portraying the many hotels, golf courses, tourist attractions and entertainment areas.
Merchandise from all over Thailand was also put on display.
The Road Show pointed out the many environmental improvements and new
features in Pattaya, including the convenient new motorway connecting Pattaya and the
One of the main selling points for Pattaya tourism was the many hotel
accommodations offering world class standards at very reasonable rates. The new wastewater
treatment plant, which should be operational by the year 2000, was also promoted.
The Road Show members received assurances from the agency
representatives that the information will be disseminated throughout New Zealand.
On June 23rd the Road Show moved on to Melbourne, Australia with the
same presentation given to representatives from 80 tourist agencies at the Sawasdi
"The Road Show presentation was also very well received and more
positive results can be expected from this part of Australia," Sutham said.
From Melbourne the Road Show proceeded on to Sydney where the members
met with representatives from more than 100 tourist agencies at the Arun Thai Restaurant.
The news media from Sydney was also on hand, along with Thai Television Channel 5.
Mrs. Sopin Thappajuk, Pattaya City Council Member and Managing Director
of the Diana Inn, said the Road Show met with only a few obstacles, making the trip very
exciting if not somewhat intense at times.
The first problem was met with at Don Muang Airport when the travelers
were informed that the 4,500 brochures introducing Pattaya put them well over the weight
limit. However, this was soon sorted out.
Once safely in New Zealand, Sopin said, "The first nights
presentation was honored with the presence of Mr. Michael Whale, the Honorary Royal Thai
Consulate General in Auckland."
Sopin said the atmosphere at the presentation was very warm and
friendly. Added amusement was provided from promotional gifts given as door prizes to
lucky individuals from the tourist agencies who put their name cards into a hat before
entering. The gifts included airline tickets, hotel, golf course and entertainment
certificates arranged by the Road Show members.
Sopin said that in Melbourne, Australia, Thai Airways hosted the
presentation of the Road Show. Dr. Simon A. Wallace, Honorary Consul General of the Royal
Thai Consulate was the guest of honor.
Sopin also pointed out that the weather "down-under" was much
different than in Pattaya. "The heavy rains and strong winds were not unfamiliar but
the cold temperature was something out of the ordinary," she said.
However, the Road Show members were soon able to warm up as they were
welcomed by Khun Phornsiri Manoharn, the Australian and New Zealand Director of the
Tourism Authority of Thailand.
Khun Phornsiri hosted the Road Show presentation at the Arun Thai
Restaurant in Sydney, which also provided the guests with Thai Dancing entertainment and
more door prizes. Dr. Chaiyoung Satjipanon, PhD, Royal Thai Consulate General in Sydney,
was the special guest of honor.
"The organizing of the Pattaya Road Show with the combined efforts
of the Pattaya Administration and local businesses have accomplished much more than the
members anticipated," Sopin said. "Due to the unexpected turnout of so many
tourist agencies in each of the three cities visited. Especially considering the small
amount of funds required to support the Road Show."
Sopin said if statistics collected by the Tourism Authority of Thailand
show a substantial increase in tourism to Pattaya from the two countries, then the Road
Show ought to be taken on to the cities of Brisbane, Perth, and Wellington in the future.
However, this would be up to the Pattaya Administration and ultimately
depend on the intentions of both the administration and concerned businesses in Pattaya.
She said, "The 27 members of this Road Show have portrayed a very convincing
picture of Pattaya City and its new developments. Now its up to the administration
to insure the corrected areas identified actually happen by the year 2000."
Top officials meet to discuss
Preliminary feeling is that motion will
"Pattaya is a special case," so reiterated Deputy Minister of
Interior Chamni Sakadised whilst chairing a Special Commission meeting to consider the new
Pattaya City Government Administrative Regulation Act (Draft).
The special meeting took place at the Grand Sole Hotel on June 18th.
Over 300 people attended the meeting, including representatives from both the private and
Commission Chairman Chamni said that the draft proposal should pass
without any major problems, as the changes involve improvements which will make
Pattayas administration run more efficiently.
The draft has already passed the first round of consideration in
parliament. The second round is scheduled to take place in July. In typical bureaucratic
fashion, a third round of consideration talks will then be scheduled before any decisions
The main issues pertain to the position of Mayor of Pattaya City. The
new regulation stipulates the mayor be elected by the people for a four year term and
limits the mayor to no more than two terms in office.
The educational requirements for the mayor will be eased, with the
intention of leaving it up to the people at the voting poles to decide if the mayoral
candidate is educated enough to hold the position.
The draft proposal also gives the mayor more powers and allows the
mayor to choose no more than four assistants to be on his staff.
The City Council will not have the privilege of deciding to remove the
mayor if need be. However, the people will have the ultimate power to remove the mayor if
they can collect 50,000 signatures.
The new proposal will also deal with the confusing issue of the
allocation of revenue collected in Pattaya.
Thawin Phairod, Deputy Minister of the Interior Consultant and
Assistant Chairman of the Special Commission, indicated the new regulation clearly
identifies how much revenue the city and local administration will be retaining. In the
case of the Value Added Tax (Vat) the Revenue Department from the Ministry of Interior
stipulates that companies from Bangkok, for example, with branches in Pattaya will have
the Value Added Tax collected in Pattaya going back to the head company in Bangkok.
However, the new draft proposal identifies the Value Added Tax from any branch in Pattaya
will remain in Pattaya.
Current Pattaya Mayor Pairat Suthithamrongsawat indicated that collecting various
revenues in Pattaya should be viewed as a special separate entity. The city has 70,000
registered residents, and another 100,000 residents living in the area but not registered
on the city books. "Governing a tourist city with people from all over the world is
not an easy task when considering the available budget with most of the revenue going back
to the central government," he said.
Pattaya group helps push for
elevator access in Bangkok
Enabling handicapped to use new
elevated train system
The Chonburi Handicapped Development Group joined over 200 handicapped
persons from all over the country in a peaceful demonstration to try and convince the
government to install elevator access to the new elevated train system in Bangkok.
The group assembled at Government House in Bangkok on June 21st,
calling for the government to include the installation of elevators for handicapped
persons. It is estimated the elevators might cost as much as 140 million baht to install.
physically challenged have the right to be able to use the new elebated train system in
Bangkok, and are making sure this right is not overlooked by government.
Maj. Gen. Sanan Khajornprasad, Minister of the Interior, and Phichit
Rattakul, Governor of Bangkok, met with the group and informed them that the 140 million
baht is "in the process of" being allocated. The installation of elevators is
expected to be completed before Dec 5th.
Five locations have been identified where the elevators will be
installed: Siam Square, Phrakhanong, the Victory Monument, Silom and Morchit.
The two officials assured the group that the elevators will soon become
a reality. The Ministry of the Interior said his budget office will be instructed to
accelerate the budgeting of 50% of the required funds. The other 50% is expected to come
from the city of Bangkok once the House of Representatives gives its approval.
Prakit Inthisit, Chairman of the Chonburi Handicapped Group, said that the group has
been pushing this issue with the government for the last five years. Group members have
been going to government house every month to make their appeal heard. Initially, in 1995,
it was estimated that 85 million baht would be needed for the project.
Destitute mother, nursing child,
arrested for selling speed
Pleads for child to stay with friends
Banglamung Police last week raided an area in Nong Preu Sub-District
after receiving information drugs were being sold there. Five people were arrested,
including a 32 year old mother nursing her 15 day old child.
Undercover police purchased one tablet of the amphetamine drug (Ya Ba)
and shortly after raided the house, arresting Mrs. Wanthong Bunsanga, age 32, who was
nursing her 15 day old baby. A search of the house produced 14 more of the amphetamine
holds her 15 day old child while being booked for selling amphetamines.
Mrs. Wanthong was charged with possessing and distributing a class 1
illegal drug. She told police she had no means to support her child, therefore she turned
to selling the amphetamines. She then pleaded with police to allow her 15 day old baby be
sent to stay with friends.
Later the same day police raided another house in the same area and arrested four young
people while they were smoking marijuana. Wirod Inchan, Rythiphorn Suriya, Miss Thanid
Khidnunam, and Miss Saranya Nararak were taken in to custody with four small plastic bags
of marijuana as evidence. They are being charged with possession of a class 5 illegal
Banglamung police officer under
Suspected of abusing his authority
Banglamung police officer, Capt. Samai Somjit, is under investigation
for abuse of authority for operating outside his jurisdiction and jailing a seemingly
innocent man, as well as confiscating all his belongings, possibly for his own personal
Earlier this month, Capt. Samai arrested a Mr. Sawai Piakham, age 53,
for selling cut lumber along Pattaya 3 Road. Sawai was jailed for the offense and all his
lumber was confiscated by Pol. Capt. Samai and four of his men.
Pol. Col. Phinit Satchareun, Pattaya Police Superintendent, said he
spoke with Sawai after his arrest. Sawai explained to him that he had been selling the cut
lumber at the said location for the last three months. One day, Pol. Capt. Samai came by
told him to remove a sun shade cover made from thatched grass that was blocking the sun in
Sawais work area. Capt. Samai informed him that the sun shade was obstructing the
adjacent construction. He then departed.
Sawai said he did not remove the sun shade, thinking the police captain
was deliberately making life difficult for him. Three days later the captain returned with
officers in uniform, and some others not in uniform, and collected everything and anything
made from wood. He then threw Samai in jail.
Pattaya Police Superintendent Phinit said he investigated the matter
and found that perhaps Pol. Capt. Samai did violate his authority. Superintendent Phinit
pointed out that Capt. Samai was outside of the Banglamung Police jurisdiction, and he did
not notify the Pattaya Police of his actions. The Superintendent added that the wood the
Capt. confiscated is common wood that is not controlled by the Forestry Department.
The Chief of Police in Chonburi has been notified and he intends to
investigate the matter. He assured the Pattaya Police Superintendent that no police
officer is wanted on the force who abuses his authority and who deliberately makes life
difficult for law-abiding people. So far it appears that Sawai has done nothing against
Sawai told reporters that he is a common person who works honestly and
makes just enough to live from day to day. The police officer involved had no right to
arrest him. The owner of the land where Sawai works is on his side also and is not
charging him rent while he is in jail. Sawai said he will not let this matter rest until
he receives just satisfaction.
Students get a first hand look
and government work
Observe offices in Chonburi and Rayong
Mrs. Phatriya Sumano, Director of the Public Relations Association
under the Public Relations Department of the Office of the Prime Minister, led a working
committee and a group of public relation students to observe the work of government and
private enterprises in Chonburi and Rayong from June 23-25.
Sumano, Director of the Public Relations Association (front), sits with the working
observe activities at the Laem Chabang port on June 23rd.
The working committee and students also listened to lectures
summarizing provincial public relation policy presented by Chonburi Governor Sujarit
Pachimnan, and Rayong Governor Chaijit Ratkhajorn.
Afterwards the students asked questions and had an opportunity to exchange ideas,
gaining a better understanding of what was observed during their visit to various
Australia and Thailands
stock exchanges join forces
On Friday, June 25th, the Australian Stock Exchange
signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Stock Exchange of Thailand.
Witnessing this momentous occasion was Australias Minister for
Financial Services and Regulation, the Hon. Joe Hockey, and his Thai counterpart, His
Excellency Dr. Pisit Leeahtam, the Deputy Minister of Finance.
The aim of the MOU is to facilitate the sharing of information for
regulation and enforcement.
It is hoped that the signing of the agreement will promote dialogue and
be a vehicle for the exchange of technical information between the two organizations.
It is becoming apparent that as the number of more formal relationships
develops and networks expand, the level of recognition of the ASX in the Asia Pacific
region is strengthening.
The Chairman of the Australian Stock Exchange, Maurice L. Newman AM and Amarat Sila-on,
the Chairman of the Stock Exchange of Thailand signed the MOU at a formal ceremony on 25
June in the Grand Ballroom of the Grand Hyatt Erawan.
Drug Center hopeful of receiving
Deputy Minister of Interior said he
will look into it
The Ban Poonsri Drug Rehabilitation Center could be receiving
assistance from the government in the future, both in their budget and in finding a new
location for the center.
Deputy Minister of the Interior, HE Praphat Phothisuthon, and the
Commissioner of Tourism, MP Santsak Ngamphiches, visited the Ban Poonsri Drug
Rehabilitation Center in Soi Phothisan, Naklua. The center now has 80 young people in the
process of changing their lives while receiving treatment. The center has provided
treatment to many thousands of young addicts in the past.
The Deputy Minister inspected the in-patients living quarters and
other areas within the center. He also spoke with the young people in treatment, asking
them to persevere in their endeavor to resist drugs, adding that it would surely be an
honorable tribute to both their parents and society. He mentioned that he will research
the possibility of providing government assistance in finding a new location with more
suitable accommodation for the center.
The Rehabilitation Center is currently using facilities belonging to
well intentioned local residents. However, the accommodation is inadequate for the large
number of people receiving treatment at the center. It is hoped that the Deputy Minister
will be able to persuade the government to appropriate funds from the central budget to
provide a more suitable facility and provide further assistance in supporting the
centers mission of rehabilitating the young people with their drug addiction.
New road in Jomtien soon
City officials inspect progress
Pattaya Mayor Pairat Suthithamrongsawat and council members conducted
an inspection of the progress at the construction area of Wad Bunkanjanaram Road and Soi
Chaiyapheud where a new road will open to relieve the traffic congestion along Jomtien
Road. Road fill and gravel has been laid down on three kilometers of road so far and is in
the process of being compacted. The road will soon have the asphalt laid down.
The new road will certainly help the traffic flow along Jomtien Road
according to the Mayor. However, there is concern that the road may become a problem area
during the rainy season, so engineers will be surveying the area to incorporate a drainage
German businessman donates to
Collected money at his birthday party
As was reported in last weeks Pattaya Mail, Uwe Sonthoff, owner
of Deutsche Schanke Restaurant on Pattaya-Naklua Road, celebrated his birthday in a most
benevolent way. He asked his friends and acquaintances to give him envelopes full of money
for his birthday. Not for himself, mind you, but for charity. When the envelopes were
counted, Uwe matched the amount taken in with money from his own pocket. In the end, he
had amassed 13,000 baht for charity.
Uwe Sonthoff, his
wife, Mayor Pairat with the children who received the birthday donation for their
This past week, Uwe and his wife met with Mayor Pairat
Suthithamrongsawat to present the money to underprivileged students in Pattaya who have
performed well in school.
The mayor, whose birthday was on a day very close to that of Uwe, had
Pattaya schools identify students deserving the educational assistance.
The four students receiving the donations were: Sinaphorn Phraeophrai,
a first grade student from Pattaya 3 School; Khwanryan Namprasit, a fifth grade student
from Pattaya 6 School; Thana Srisuphak, a seventh grade student from Pattaya 8 School; and
a seventh grader from Banglamung School.
Each student was given 2,500 baht for their educational assistance. The 3,000 baht
remaining will be given to Pattaya School 6 for the purchase of athletic uniforms.
South Pattaya schools becoming
The area of South Pattaya Road has quickly become
congested, as, with all the local construction, many new laborers have taken up residence
in the area. Many of the new laborers have children, and those children have enrolled in
The schools are now overcrowded and unable to provide adequate
education for the many students now attending.
Pattaya Mayor Pairat Suthithumrongsawat, Council Member Adidsorn
Phonlukin, City Manager Niran Wattanasadsathorn and other officials conducted an
inspection of the overcrowded conditions at schools in the area.
The administration feels it is necessary to provide quality education
for the students of this area. Otherwise, the young people will grow up in an under
privileged environment that may result in many ending up as future misfits causing
multiple problems for the city.
The mayor said funds have been appropriated for hiring additional teachers and new
funds will be allocated in the coming months to start expanding the classrooms. Funds will
also be allocated to construct an additional building with more classrooms to accommodate
the increase in student numbers.
Copyright 1998 Pattaya Mail Publishing Co.Ltd.
370/7-8 Pattaya Second Road, Pattaya City, Chonburi 20260, Thailand
Tel.66-38 411 240-1, 413 240-1, Fax:66-38 427 596; e-mail: [email protected]
Updated by Chinnaporn Sangwanlek.