Thai Bits: Thai Foreign Chamber Of Commerce Wants Thai Government To Give Priority To Expats For Vaccine, Thai Government Causes Confusion About Current COVID-19 Policy

Thai Foreign Chamber of Commerce Really Wants Expats To Get Vaccine

In a meeting of 35 foreign chambers of commerce, it was unanimously agreed that the Thai government should give priority to vaccinating foreign businessmen, foreign employees, and their families. 
Stanley Kang, the president of the JFCCT (Joint Foreign Chambers of Commerce Thailand), said there were 500,000 foreign businessmen and their families, and 2 million foreign employees and their families. 
The two and a half million people need to be vaccinated before the end of the third quarter (the start of October at the latest), according to Thai business media.
Registration for ThaiIntervac.com has so far only been available to foreigners with work permits, so it is not open to foreigners’ families or older people.
Kang thought it would be better to register vaccines via passports and visas rather than work permits. 
The Thai-Chinese CoC noted that Chinese nationals are being vaccinated by their governments.
It was agreed that Thailand is a great country to live in and invest in, but the amount of red tape faced by foreign companies needs to be cut in order to make it more competitive with ASEAN rivals. 
It was suggested the Board of Investment privileges be upgraded and that Social Security benefits be extended to foreigners working and residing in Thailand. 

Who Can Travel in Thailand?

Ten provinces have been asked not to travel.
In spite of this, the Thai media was filled with stories of people packing the roads, defying bans, and heading for villages. 
Netizens thought this measure was about as helpful as what happened in the country due to the dilly-dallying at Songkran if this was the government’s way to stop the spread of Covid. 
The order – number 25 – covered provinces in the deep red zones where Covid is spiking in and around Bangkok and in the far south.
Bangkok, Nakhon Pathom, Pathum Thani, Samut Prakan, Samut Sakhon, Narathiwat, Pattani, Songkhla, and Yala are affected. 
Anucha Burapachaisri looked increasingly flustered as he described construction site closures for 30 days and further restrictions on gatherings as most definitely “not a lockdown”.
Meanwhile, tens of thousands of people took him at his word and fled to the countryside.
The hardest-hit areas, in particular, hunkered down. 
After ignoring the travel advisory and on the other hand many people feeling as though they were under lockdown, the government looked increasingly out of touch. 
The Daily News chose the headline: Spokesman says it is not a lockdown – people should avoid traveling between provinces. 
Anucha was pictured looking like he was caught in the headlights of a car. 
In the meantime, he had to admit that a new strain from Africa, known as the Beta variant, had now been detected in the far south. 
As announced in the government gazette, the new regulations are in effect today, June 28, 2021.

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