PM defends nightlife reopening delay

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has defended the decision to postpone the reopening of pubs and entertainment venues from Dec 1 to Jan 15.

PM defends nightlife reopening delay
Tourists walk past a restaurant in Pai district, Mae Hong Soon, on Monday. (Bloomberg photo)

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has defended the decision to postpone the reopening of pubs and entertainment venues from Dec 1 to Jan 15.

The move disappointed many in the hospitality and entertainment industries as they worry about keeping their businesses alive.

Prayut said public health safety measures would not be ready in time for them to safely reopen on Dec 1.

The premier has warned entertainment businesses not to reopen before they are given permission or they will face swift legal action. Many pubs and bars have already defied the rules.

Meanwhile, businesses in Nakhon Ratchasima are angry about the delayed return of the city's nightlife. The manager of Tawan Daeng, an entertainment complex , said the company had called more than 150 employees back to work after he learned that pubs and bars would open their doors again on Dec 1.

"To be told they now have to be on standby for another month or so, it's not a pleasant feeling," the manager said.