Street-food plan starves poor of choice

Clearing all food vendors from all pavements robs workers of the chance for affordable food. (File photo by Patipat Janthong)

Soon after being hailed as the city with the world's best street food by CNN, and with the Michelin Guide announcing it will visit Thailand this year, City Hall which is known to have a love-hate relationship with street vendors, yesterday decided to keep street food in certain spots in the capital -- to serve tourists, not residents.

While CNN has not named any outstanding street vendors, the Michelin Guide, which will hold a press conference Friday at Phaya Thai Palace, will definitely award a few stars to restaurants in Bangkok. The recognition should certainly benefit local tourism.

Immediately after CNN's announcement last month, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha called street food part of the uniqueness and charm of Bangkok and asked vendors to follow good hygiene practices, keep pavements clean and cooperate with city officials in maintaining order.

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