Connect with us


Immigration chief targets “national stability’



PHUKET CITY: In Phuket to officiate at the opening of the new Phuket Provincial Immigration Office at Saphan Hin today, Immigration Commissioner Lt Gen Chatchawan Suksomchit yesterday announced that he is shaking up his ranks to use technology to be more effective.

Gen Chatchawan, Thailand’s top Immigration officer, said his goal is to improve “national stability” in order to restore investor confidence in the country.

He is on a national roadshow to spread his ideology, which he believes the Immigration Bureau can help achieve by maintaining internal security, better administration and serving justice.

In order for the year ahead to be the “year of investment” for Thailand, radical changes are needed to keep up with rapid development worldwide in the era of globalism, Gen Chatchawan opined.

He explained that Immigration will introduce a real-time national database called “Pisces” (Personal Identification Secure Comparison Evaluation System) as well as Advanced Passenger Process (APP) and Advanced Passenger Information (API) computer systems so that officers can quickly and more effectively process arrivals.

“The important synergies here are with organizations like Interpol and government departments of many nations that are willing to join forces. Many nations are now supplying Thai immigration with comprehensive data on both known and suspected pedophiles,” Gen Chatchawan said.

Regarding Immigration’s role in apprehending illegal laborers, he said, “It is more important to make illegal workers legal as the country needs them. In the case of Burmese, they can work at rates that Thais will not accept and employers cannot afford to pay more – making them a necessity. Immigration therefore has a policy to legalize them and ensure that they all have correct documentation.”

Speaking about the 54 Burmese who suffocated in a refrigeration truck en route to Phuket on April 9, Gen Chatchawan said, “By law, this incident cannot be classified as human trafficking as there was no employer identified as being involved, meaning that it was simply a violation of entering without passing a checkpoint.

“As far as the other related crimes, such as the shooting of an ex-police lieutenant suspected of playing a role in the deaths, it is the duty of local police to investigate.”

However, Gen Chatchawan admitted, “I do not deny the fact that the integrity of government officials across the board must now be more closely monitored and action taken against those involved.”

Other developments to boost national security include the formation of a “Transnational Syndicate Crime Suppression Center” and a task force to counter forgery of passports, visas and immigration stamps.

In addition, details of where foreigners reside, including satellite pictures, are now stored on a centralized database and monitored for irregularities, he said.

“The system is not only to arrest illegal immigrants but also to offer higher levels of safety and protection to VIP visitors. In order for the database to be practical, only those with visas that allow longer stays and VIPS are monitored,” Gen Chatchawan explained.

He added that networks are being established to share resources between immigration and other national agencies, such as the Internal Security Operation Command (ISOC), Special Branch (Santibaan), Border Patrol and Provincial Police.

Also, informers who prove themselves as having excellent powers of observation, good memories and a concise, accurate reporting style are now issued an ID card that enables them to quickly report a suspicious foreigner and have the case taken seriously by Immigration.

With the aim of smoothing out the immigration process for many foreigners, Gen Chatchawan said that foreigners known to be honest, responsible and posing no threat to Thailand can be issued cards that will facilitate swift passage past immigration checkpoints.

Also, volunteer translators are helping out at immigration offices, and a 1178 hotline has been set up to provide clear, accurate information about immigration processes, he added.


Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Bangkok12 mins ago

83 Bangkok bars don’t meet safety standards

Politics19 mins ago

Anutin: “If I have to be the prime minister, I will be.”

Chon Buri30 mins ago

Cheap sound absorption panels believed to be cause of Mountain B fire

Sponsored16 mins ago

Super luxury villas in Phuket with breathtaking ocean views

Thailand1 hour ago

Thailand amongst Top 10 Best Countries for Expats | GMT

Tourism1 hour ago

55 tourists from Thailand go AWOL in South Korea

Eastern Thailand16 hours ago

German man believed to have monkeypox briefly fled police

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Thailand17 hours ago

New app to help migrant women in Thailand facing abuse

Cambodia18 hours ago

Nigerian man recovers from monkeypox, handed to Cambodian authorities

World19 hours ago

Unusually heavy floods in Pakistan kill 549, thousands of homes damaged

Thailand19 hours ago

How to get the Thailand Elite Visa?

Transport20 hours ago

BTS is offering a free ride… with your mom

Bangkok20 hours ago

Fire at Energy Ministry’s compound in Bangkok

Phuket21 hours ago

2 meth busts in Phuket this past week

Politics21 hours ago

NIDA Poll: PM Prayut should not extend term after August 24

Chon Buri23 hours ago

Mountain Pub fire: 15 victims dead, owner arrested, club uninsured

Thailand11 months ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand1 year ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism1 year ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket1 year ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism1 year ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand1 year ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism1 year ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11