Thailand aims for 65 million Covid-19 vaccines for next year
Eying long-term Covid-19 strategies, PM Prayut Chan-o-cha has announced that Thailand is targeting obtaining 65 million vaccines for next year. The vaccines are planned to include the newest versions of each brand imported, though the exact allotment of brands and vaccines were not announced. The prime minister did confirm, however, that contracts have already been signed with suppliers to source that 65 million vaccines.
Up to 25% of Thailand’s gross domestic product has been used in dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic, including vaccination, treatment, and assistance programs for the general public, according to PM Prayut. Chile is the only country that has spent a bigger percentage of the GDP on the pandemic.
Meanwhile, so far just 11 provinces have hit a threshold of over 70% of their population having received at least one vaccine injection, a target that has been crucial for fully reopening the country. The government is keeping a watchful eye over advancements in new and more effective vaccines including options in development to use a nasal spray to inoculate against Covid-19. Officials will incorporate any changes into next year’s Covid-19 strategy for Thailand.
PM Prayut said that the reopening rollout since November 1 has been satisfactory overall, a position that balances the lacklustre arrival figures with the absence of any major Covid-19 outbreak or other negative results of entry restrictions easing. The prime minister has tasked the appropriate agencies with creating a digital system to check and verify passengers’ documents in order to expedite the arrival process for international travellers.
The frustrating delay in reopening nightlife, entertainment venues, and alcohol sales that has enraged travellers and the entertainment sector alike is an unfortunate necessity, according to PM Prayut. He added that agencies relevant to Covid-19 disease and safety control measures need to be vigilant during the upcoming Loy Krathong celebrations around Thailand on Friday.
The prime minister added that all businesses need to follow all the Covid-19 public health measures and operating hours restrictions to ensure that safety can be maintained and allow the possibility for more businesses and areas of Thailand to reopen for tourism in the near future. The call for any further reopening moves will be made by the public health agencies in Thailand.
SOURCE: National News Bureau of Thailand
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