11 July 2024

Bangkok street vendors can now enjoy continuing doing their businesses at allocated spots specified by local authorities, after a Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) committee tasked with maintaining the orderliness of the capital has extended its permit to street vendors from one to two years, according to Deputy Bangkok Governor Sakontee Pattiyakul.

In the short-term the BMA will work with other related agencies in managing public spaces, in relation to street vendors, while, in the long-term, City Hall will make the locations clearer in which vendors are allowed, taking into account the local population’s requirements, tourism promotion, with a focus on unique communal and cultural traits, and the businesses of small operators.

Street vendors at Soi Ari in Bangkok’s Phayathai district talked to Thai PBS about what they think about the extension, as well as government measures in helping those affected by the pandemic to stay afloat.

While urging the government to rebuild economic confidence in the country, so that their businesses can recover. They say several measures to boost spending, such as through “Rao Chana” (We Win), “Mor 33 Rao Rak Kan” (We Love Each Other) and the third phase of 50:50 co-payment scheme have done little to help their businesses.

“If the extension is two years, it would be better, so we don’t need to do health check-ups too often. Otherwise, we would have to pay a lot of money for each check-up. The extension will help save us money on this,” said a food vendor.

“COVID has affected our income a lot, because not many people come here,” he added.

“The 50:50 co-payment scheme can help, but for only a short period of time. The effects are not long-lasting. It’s better to, for example, giving everyone access to the vaccines. With this little amount of money, we can’t do anything. We have to help ourselves,” said another.