Over 10,000 vendors are in business as Thailand's famed Chatuchak market opens its doors

Visitors shop during the re-opening of the famed Chatuchak Weekend Market, as the Thai government relaxed measures to combat the spread of the coronavirus, in Bangkok on Saturday (May 9). - AFP

BANGKOK: A senior official of Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) inspected the famous and tourist hotspot Chatuchak Weekend Market on Saturday (May 9) on the first day of its reopening after being closed since March 22 under a government order to prevent the spread of Covid-19 (coronavirus) outbreak.

Wullaya Wattanarat, deputy permanent secretary of the city administration, said: “The BMA will allow the market to open on weekends from 5am to 6pm in all zones except the watch tower and night market zones due to curfew restrictions.

“There are 10,334 vendors who have expressed their interest to continue opening their shops in the market.”

To prevent the possible spread of Covid-19, BMA has limited access to the market from six locations, which will have screening checkpoints equipped with thermo-scanners at all locations.

Vehicles will be allowed to enter/exit via Kamphaengphet Road and Phaholyothin Road only.

“All vendors and customers must wear sanitary or cloth face masks, while restaurants must comply with social distancing measures announced by the Ministry of Public Health, ” she added.

“Furthermore, all eight public restrooms in the market will be cleaned every two hours and will provide alcohol-based hand gels to visitors.”

Vendors selling items like clothes have been instructed to limit the number of customers to five at a time for small shops and 10 for larger shops. Activities that involve crowds are banned at the market.

“BMA will also help the vendors in Chatuchak Weekend Market by exempting them from paying rent for three months, ” added Wullaya. - The Nation Thailand/Asian News Network

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