It’s been half a week since Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha announced that Thailand will reopen in 120 days, in mid-October, a multitude of plans have sprung up to get the country ready for reopening.
Last night, in an online statement, the Prime Minister called for unity and called on people and government offices to work together to make this huge undertaking a reality.
Prime Minister Prayut reiterated his statement on Thailand’s reopening, saying that the 120-day period is not a law of the Medes and Persians, but rather a preparation period intended to give provinces a timetable to prepare for reopening.
A big factor here, however, is the need to vaccinate 70% of the province’s population before it can open.
The government believes they will achieve their goal of giving at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine to 50 million people by October so that reopening can continue. If this goal is not met, or new major Covid-19 outbreaks, the reopening arrangement could be delayed or even cancelled.
However, in his online statement, the prime minister said Thai people are fighting to make ends meet and that every week counts as we aim to reopen. As such, he requests that all federal and local government departments do their best to work towards the common national goal.
Prime Minister Prayut believes the reopening can be achieved, but some setbacks are to be expected along the way. He asked people not to be discouraged and to continue to work together to get international tourism in Thailand back on track.
“In the meantime, there may be issues that could affect our work, whether it be delivering vaccines, new Covid-19 mutants [sic] or anything else. But we must all do our best to achieve our goals.”
The prime minister also announced that the reopening will take place in steps. Earlier announcements explained that Phuket will open first in just 10 days, with Koh Samui and its neighbours to follow on July 15. Krabi and the areas surrounding Phuket will open in August and September is the scheduled date for Chiang Mai, Buriram and Pattaya, although the latter has plans to push the opening date back to August. By October, Bangkok, Hua Hin and every other Thai province that has been prepared will reopen.
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