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City Authorities To Clamp Down On Entertainment Venues

Source: Vientiane Times

A meeting of the Vientiane People’s Council recently questioned the adequacy of measures being taken to regulate places of entertainment, bars and restaurants, which members said were frequently violating the law by providing services outside their remit.

The meeting discussed the problem of unregulated activities at such establishments and raised the question of what might be done to institute effective controls so that disorderly and disruptive behavior could be curbed in the future.

In response, the Director of the Vientiane Information, Culture and Tourism Department, Ms Vilayvone Chanthalaty, said the department would introduce more systematic management, monitor the situation more closely, and suggest solutions.

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The department would partner with city authorities and district and village administrations to achieve consensus on solutions and submit these to the Vientiane Administration to consider for adoption and legal implementation.

New regulations would be based on existing legislation, especially in relation to closing times. Under law, bars, restaurants and places of entertainment are required to close at midnight.

Ms Vilayvone also said notices would be given to business operators to inform them of the regulations, which they would be obliged to follow.

In addition, the department will partner with district administrations in carrying out inspections of restaurants that are licensed to serve food but are also illicitly operating as entertainment venues.

The issue is that a restaurant licence does not authorise the owner to hire bands for the purposes of entertainment, but many establishments have ignored this rule and overstepped the legal boundaries.