Thai hoteliers want Emergency Decree to be used to speed up vaccines

Thailand’s hoteliers are wanting the Emergency Decree to be used to speed up vaccinations to fast track the scheduled reopening of the country by July. They say PM Prayut should use the power of the decree to let companies import vaccines with the FDA helping the move by approving more vaccines at reasonable prices.

William Heinecke, founder and chairman of Minor International says the government missed the opportunity to secure a Covax vaccine-sharing scheme earlier, leaving them to only have limited amounts of Sinovac and AstraZeneca vaccines.

“The government failed to inspire the public to take the vaccine and left them with negative feelings towards the vaccine. We will lose tourism trade to Vietnam, Hong Kong and Singapore because they have more efficient vaccination programmes.”

He points towards Europe being able to recover faster than Thailand thanks to their faster vaccination programmes which feature faster administrations of the vaccines as well as higher acceptance rates. Thirayuth Chirathivat, chief executive of Centara Hotels and Resorts, also says the government needs to establish a solid vaccination plan that is carried out efficiently. He says there also needs to be a better plan in place to bring back tourists.

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He says tourists looking to enter Thailand could be put off from choosing to come if they have to do loads of paperwork instead of just using a digitalised method to prove they have been inoculated. It is no secret that Thailand loves paperwork, with critics saying the process could be slowed if it is not digitised.

“We have to compete with other countries to attract tourism as everyone has been beaten to zero.”

Marisa Sukosol Nunbhakdi, president of the Thai Hotels Association is also pushing for a July reopening as she says the reopening scheme in October is not soon enough for hoteliers as 50% of hotel workers have lost their jobs.

Thailand has reported that it is starting human trials of its domestically-developed vaccine, but says it won’t be until next year that the vaccine can be rolled out.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

Covid-19 NewsTourism News
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Ann Carter

Ann Carter is an award-winning journalist from the United States with over 12 years experience in print and broadcast news. Her work has been featured in America, China and Thailand as she has worked internationally at major news stations as a writer and producer. Carter graduated from the Walter Williams Missouri School of Journalism in the USA.

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