Bangkok Business Associations Don’t Like The Latest COVID-19 Lockdown

As a result of the government’s recent announcement of a one-month closure of construction camps, the Federation of Thai Industries and many other business associations complained that the action was too weak. According to the FTI and other business groups, a full lockdown is necessary to control Covid-19 outbreaks in Bangkok and half-measures like this are at best ineffective.
In addition to the federation, many businesses are dissatisfied with the government’s failure to control the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in Thailand and the lack of a lockdown. FTI’s chairman said the targeted closures wouldn’t reduce overall infection rates, as the root problem is not being addressed in Thailand.
Currently, mass vaccination of the public is the most crucial effort.
A spokesperson from the Tourism Council of Thailand says that a flattening of the incline is needed and that a strict lockdown is the best strategy. Tourism activities have been suspended for over a year, and reopening and partial actions will only prolong the suspension. As the number of cases soars and hospital beds are nearly full, the tourism business group says the only long-term solution is to lock down and eradicate the virus.
There is a need for decisive and consistent action, not only to control Covid-19, but also to inspire faith and collaboration in the Thai people. A strong lockdown needs to be accompanied by financial aid, such as using social security to pay 62% of salaries during closures.
Employers’ Confederation of Thai Trade and Industry has also endorsed a lockdown in Bangkok, arguing that the government should listen to doctors and medical professionals struggling to cope with a surge in infections and close Bangkok for at least one week. It will hurt the economy in the short term, but getting Covid-19 under control will have a tremendous effect on the long-term economy.
The Thai Real Estate Association is also in favor of the lockdown, arguing that their business won’t be harmed by a lockdown since the market is so slow already, but they are harmed by the endless Covid-19 infections. As people wait for Bangkok to control Covid-19, they look to move out of the city to other provinces, damaging the property market.
Despite continued Covid-19 infections in Bangkok, Asia Plus Securities predict a negative investment market next week. It is understandable that the government is concerned that a lockdown will only drive people out of Bangkok since business sectors will shut down and people won’t have jobs. Bangkok residents fleeing the city will carry Covid-19 infections with them.
However, Asia Plus Securities believes that the government’s weaker response could only prolong the pandemic. Business associations agree on their solution: a swift and strict lockdown now and a rapid acceleration of Thailand’s sluggish vaccine rollout.

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