Private sector hails easing of lockdown restrictions

Private sector hails easing of lockdown restrictions

Hair salons are to start reopening on Sunday, following the partial easing of lockdown measures by the government. Pornprom Satrabhaya
Hair salons are to start reopening on Sunday, following the partial easing of lockdown measures by the government. Pornprom Satrabhaya

The private sector yesterday hailed the government's easing measures to allow some businesses to start reopening on Sunday, saying the reopening will help spur people to go shopping and provide liquidity to operators.

Kalin Sarasin, chairman of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, said the relaxing by the government to allow some businesses, such as small retailers, street food stalls and restaurants outside shopping malls, to start reopening on Sunday was a good sign and should encourage money circulation in the economy.

But Mr Kalin said the government needs to do more in terms of communication.

"Communication is the most important and needs to be clear," he said. "It is essential for the government to convey a clear single message on measures that people and the private sector all understand in the same direction. The message should not be aired by various state agencies, as this creates confusion."

The government yesterday allowed six categories to reopen: fresh markets, small retailers, street food stalls and restaurants outside of shopping malls, as well as parks and outdoor recreation facilities, and barbershops and pet groomers.

But department stores, cinemas, gyms and spas, as well as most indoor sports venues, will stay closed to prevent large gatherings.

Four straight days of new infections in single digits prompted the government to drop the curbs on some businesses.

Boonyong Tansakul, chief executive of Zen Corporation, the operator of food brands Zen, AKA, Tummour, Din's and Khiang, lauded the easing of the measures, saying it would help generate cash flow, particularly for street food vendors and small retailers.

But he said the company's Khiang street food brand is unlikely to get many benefits, as people will remain cautious and stay indoors at the beginning.

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