Proposal for Phuket’s ‘Special City’ Status

Phuket’s proposed journey toward potentially transforming into a ‘Special City’ akin to Bangkok and the economic regions of Rayong, Chon Buri, and Chachoengsao is under the spotlight. Mayor Saroj Angkanapilas has presented a compelling case to Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin, advocating for greater autonomy that could reshape Phuket’s administrative and economic landscape. This special status could unlock the island’s potential, enabling it to tackle its unique challenges—ranging from managing its burgeoning tourist population to upgrading its infrastructure.

Despite generating revenues exceeding B300 billion, Phuket’s ambitions are currently hampered by a rigid national system ill-suited to its distinctive needs. The proposed change could introduce a nimble governance structure, led by a directly elected mayor with the power to swiftly address issues like traffic congestion, waste management, and urban planning. This could dramatically enhance the quality of life for both residents and tourists, potentially positioning Phuket alongside global giants like Bali and Dubai.

However, this shift is not without its risks. The drive for efficiency might compromise transparency and accountability. Ensuring a balanced approach with robust oversight will be crucial to avoiding pitfalls of corruption and mismanagement…Read More

For the Phuket property market, this proposed change spells opportunity. Enhanced infrastructure, a streamlined administration, and potentially greater international visibility could lead to increased property values and investment attractiveness.