More Laotians travelling to Thailand for business, travel, and fuel?

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More Laotians have been travelling to Thailand ever since the Nong Khai border checkpoint reopened. Before travel restrictions lifted, there were about 300 Laotians visiting Thailand per day. Now, that number has soared to about 2,000 Laotians per day, according the the head of customs control at Nong Khai Customs House, Pakin Tiabkam.

Pakin said 30,000 foreigners crossed the Nong Khai border checkpoint from May 9-31. While many Laotians come to Thailand for business, the Bangkok Post reported that many cars from Laos had visited petrol stations in Nong Khai to fill their tanks before heading back to Vientiane.

While Thailand’s diesel price is currently 32.6 baht per litre, in Laos, diesel is 40.4 baht per litre. Given the outrage in Thailand over the country’s spiking fuel prices, it’s hard to imagine that people from some countries might travel to Thailand for fuel prices.

Meanwhile, Pakin said that about 28,000 Thais travelled to Laos from May 9-31. The Nong Khai Customs House said that some Thais have smuggled petrol into Laos to sell it there.

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Though Thailand’s fuel prices may be a better option for Laotians, Thais aren’t happy about them. As Thailand’s fuel prices climb, some delivery drivers are saying the country’s attempts at subsidies aren’t helping them much. Delivery workers have complained that discounts from the government are not worth it when they have to travel long distances to get them.

Earlier this year, angry truck drivers rallied against the spiking prices in front of Government House in Bangkok.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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