Thailand will continue to allow specific groups of foreigners to enter Thailand provided they adhere to the mandatory 14-day quarantine, the Center for the COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) said on Friday.
Foreign diplomats, exhibitors, production crews, tourists, travellers with an elite card, and students will be allowed to enter under alternate state quarantine (ASQ) or villa quarantine.
Diplomats and foreign government officials will no longer be allowed to self-quarantine after the scandal in Rayong and Bangkok.
Dr Taweesin Visanuyothin, the Center for the COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA)’s spokesperson, said the details on the measures will be given over the weekend.
The travel bubble negotiations will also be put on hold after the scandals, said Prime Minister Prayut Chan-ocha on Wednesday.
In an effort to help Rayong’s tourism sector which has been devastated by the CCSA’s administrative mistakes, Dr Taweesin said the government has come up with five measures.
The measures include encouraging government agencies to conduct their meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) in Rayong.
The first football matches and concerts after the lockdown will also take place in the province.
He added that the Ministry of Tourism & Sports is also inviting local and foreign production houses to film in the province.
They will be allowed to stay in villa quarantine for 14 days at participating hotels in Rayong, Dr Taweesin said.
Following the Rayong and Bangkok scandals, the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand (CAAT) said on Friday that they have enforced new regulations for Thai-owned chartered flights and special flights transitioning through the country.
Passengers on all Thai-owned chartered flights and transitioning fights will now be required to carry a certificate confirming they are infection-free before they can receive a boarding pass.
Chula Sukmanop, the CAAT’s director-general, said if any of these flights were found to be carrying COVID-infected patients, they will be blacklisted.
Examples of such cases include the six passengers who tested positive on a Thai Lion Air route operating from Don Mueang International Airport to Guangzhou. There were also five passengers that tested positive on an Air Asia X flight from Don Mueang to Tianjin.
As a result, the Civil Aviation Administration of China suspended the two air routes from Thailand to China. Both of the flights were chartered flights.
The number of daily confirmed coronavirus cases has reached another new high of more than 255,000 cases per day on Friday. More than 73,300 of those cases were recorded in the United States alone.
There are now 13.9 million confirmed coronavirus cases globally. About 8.3 million have recovered from the disease while more than 590,000 have died from it.
The top three countries with the highest number of recorded cases are the US (3.69 million cases with more than 141,000 deaths), Brazil (two million cases with more than 76,800 deaths) and India (reached one million cases on Friday with more than 25,600 deaths).