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Governor says Bangkok will only re-open when safe to do so

Maya Taylor

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Bangkok's Khao San Road pre-pandemic. PHOTO: Flickr/Stef Krijnen

The governor of Bangkok says 3 criteria need to be met before the capital can re-open, in order to protect the health and safety of residents. Aswin Kwanmuang says while Bangkok is anxious to re-open and reboot its economy, it can only do so when it’s safe. This means the re-opening could be pushed out to mid-November, according to a Bangkok Post report.

Aswin says that the first condition for re-opening is that 70% of residents need to be fully vaccinated. Currently, just 42% of the capital’s population have received 2 doses of a Covid-19 vaccine. Aswin believes the desired 70% could be reached by October 22, but there will then be a further waiting period of 7 – 14 days to allow immunity to build up in the vaccinated population. This means the re-opening might be delayed to the first or second week of November.

According to the Bangkok Post report, the second condition for re-opening is that daily new infections continue to fall. The capital has been reporting between 2,700 and 2,800 new daily cases in the past few days, with 2,831 infections reported yesterday. Aswin says the third factor for re-opening is that there must be fewer people hospitalised with Covid-19.

Aswin says that once the 3 criteria have been met, his office will hold talks with the Public Health and Tourism ministries in order to agree measures for the capital’s re-opening to foreign tourism. These will then be submitted to the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration.

CCSA spokesperson Apisamai Srirungson says the BMA also plans to have discussions with Phuket officials to learn from the sandbox experience. Since the scheme launched on July 1, the southern island has welcomed over 32,000 fully vaccinated foreign tourists, with fewer than 1% of them testing positive for the virus during their time on Phuket.

For more information on how to get into Thailand during the pandemic, CLICK HERE.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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