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Small eateries reeling from labour exodus

New alien worker law creating shortage

A waitress takes orders at a street food stall in Bangkok's Chinatown. PATIPAT JANTHONG

Thailand's hotel and restaurant businesses, which employ millions of alien workers, are in a spin over the new labour law endorsed on June 23.

The controversial crackdown has forced scores of restaurants to close their doors, and many travel and bus companies to stop hiring illegal workers, many of whom handle tourist luggage.

Thai Restaurant Association (TRA) president Taniwan Koonmongkol said more than 250,000 illegal workers have returned to their home countries since the implementation of the act. Millions, however, are still in the country, since their grace periods have yet to expire.

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