The Thai government is considering further easing entry restrictions for foreign travellers coming to conduct business in the Kingdom.
Up to date, around 11,000 businesspeople and work permit holders have been granted entry by the Centre for Covid-19 Administration Situation since they started allowing some foreigners back into the country after July.
All arrivals have to submit to a mandatory 14 day quarantine, as does anyone arriving from overseas at the moment. A Government spokesman says making life easier for foreigners trying to enter Thailand for business or investment purposes is “vital to economic survival”.
Thailand’s economy has been decimated by the fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic, with many arguing that it is now time to re-open the borders.
New police chief clarifies suspension of police checkpoints
Just days into his post, the new Chief of the Royal Thai Police, has clarified his decision to suspend roadside checkpoints.
He says the new rule only applies to drink-driving checkpoints, which he says must first pass transparency checks, and shows that tests of blood alcohol levels return accurate results.
All roadside checkpoints will need to comply with strict rules and operate to a certain pre-defined standard, while un-authorised checkpoints will be investigated and shut down.
Other checkpoints, including those installed for crime prevention, to monitor traffic, to check for drugs, or to check for illegal migrants violating Covid-19 restrictions, will continue to work as normal.
Thailand is lifting its 6 month ban on international tourists, allowing only those who are on a Special Tourist Visa to arrive on select charter flights, but there are conflicting reports on when exactly they will arrive.
Many reports say the tourists should arrive on Thursday, but a recent report from a respected Thai media outlet claims the plans are being delayed.
Many reports, including from the National News Bureau of Thailand run by the Public Relations Department of Thailand, say a group of Chinese
nationals will arrive on Thursday, flying directly from China to Phuket on a chartered AirAsia flight endorsed by the CCSA. But a recent report from the Thai language business journal Thansettakij says there has been a delay due to “many points in the process,” but tourists should arrive before October 20.
Last week, Phuket’s governor said during an event that he had not been officially informed about the plans to have tourists arrive at the Phuket International Airport on Thursday, saying he’d only read the news in the media.
7 foreign teachers found working illegally at Sarasas school
The Sarasas private school network continues to find itself in hot water, with revelations that 7 foreign teachers at one school have been working illegally.
All 7 have been found to be employed without work permits. All 42 Sarasas schools are currently in the spotlight after allegations of abuse of students surfaced in recent weeks, including incriminating CCTV evidence.
The 7 illegal teachers admit to being employed at the school since July of this year, receiving a cash salary of around 17,000 baht. All 7 are now in police custody.
Head of economic recovery panel warns of collapse if borders not re-opened now
A businessman heading up an economic recovery panel is warning the government that unless Thailand’s borders are re-opened for the last quarter of the year, the country is headed for total economic collapse.
Pailin Chuchottaworn, a former CEO of the PTT petrochemical company, says the gradual easing of Covid restrictions in recent months is not enough, insisting the country must re-open to international tourists. Pailin says that, while Thailand has been successful at controlling and eventually suppressing the Covid-19 virus, it has been at great economic cost.
He is dismissive of the new Special Tourist Visa scheme, saying it does not go far enough, and he has also criticised the hoops foreigners must jump through to obtain a visa.
“Currently, tourism is an important priority. If the country does not re-open, it will be hard for GDP to grow because the country’s economy depends mainly on the tourism industry and exports.”
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