Thailand morning news for April 1

Thailand morning news for April 1

Thailand morning news

Thailand announces 127 confirmed new cases of the Covid-19 Coronavirus as restrictions tighten in many provinces
Thailand- On Tuesday morning a press conference from members of the Ministry of Public Health and Department of Disease Control confirmed 127 new confirmed cases of the Covid-19 Coronavirus in Thailand and one additional death.
— The Pattaya News

Medical chiefs ramp up Covid-19 test capacity
Up to 40 more labs will be given approval to run tests for Covid-19 infections nationwide by the end of this month, according to the Department of Medical Sciences.
— Bangkok Post

Government Covid19 Center says no Bangkok shutdowns, curfews or lockdowns needed at this time, warns against April Fool’s day jokes
Bangkok An official from the Thai Government’s Covid19 Administration Center addressed the public today and said in an agreement with Bangkok officials at this time they feel there is no need for further lockdowns, a stay at home order or shutdowns in Bangkok.
— The Pattaya News

FCCT on Brink of Bankruptcy, Appeals for Donations
Southeast Asia’s oldest club for foreign journalists said it may soon go out of business due to financial losses caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
— Khaosod English

Curfew Introduced in Bangkok’s Northwestern Suburb
An order issued on Tuesday evening asked residents in the northwestern part of Bangkok metropolis to stay indoor during nighttime due to the worsening coronavirus pandemic.
— Khaosod English

Long Lines Continue at Immigration Despite Extra Venue
Long lines continued to form at the Immigration Bureau in spite of the agency’s decision to open another venue for extending foreigners’ stay in Thailand for 30 days.
— Khaosod English

Hungry and in chains, Thailand’s tourist elephants face crisis from COVID-19 impact
Underfed and chained up for endless hours, many elephants working in Thailand’s tourism sector may starve, be sold to zoos or be shifted into the illegal logging trade, campaigners warn, as the coronavirus decimates visitor numbers.
— CNA

February exports rise 3.6% y-o-y, trade surplus widens: BoT
Thailand’s current account surplus was $5.4 billion in February, up from a surplus of $3.44 billion in the previous month, the Bank of Thailand (BoT) said on Tuesday.
— Bangkok Post

No more shutdown announcements in Bangkok, for now
“Bangkok will not announce any further measures or continue to shut down the city.”
— The Thaiger

Thailand reports 127 new COVID-19 cases and 1 more death
BANGKOK: Thailand reported on Tuesday (Mar 31) 127 new COVID-19 cases and one more death.
— CNA

Nonthaburi seeks voluntary 11pm-5am curfew across the province
Nonthaburi’s governor, Suchin Chaichumsak, is seeking the cooperation of the province’s residents, asking them to stay at home between 11pm and 5am.
— Thai PBS News

Senator backs siphoning ministry budgets to fight outbreak
A senator on Tuesday voiced support for the government’s plans to siphon 10% of the fiscal 2020 budgets of each ministry, and to issue an executive decree to borrow more to fight the coronavirus pandemic and stabilise the economy.
— Bangkok Post

Stranded. Nearly 21,000 Russians struggling to get home.
The Russian Ambassador to Thailand claims there are about 20,800 Russian citizens stranded in the Land of Smiles.
— The Thaiger

Immigration: Beware online swindlers claiming they can extend your visa
After a wave of complaints, the Immigration Bureau yesterday issued urgent advice to tourists and visitors about extending their visas amid the Covid-19 coronavirus crisis.
— The Thaiger

Buriram quarantine violators to be housed at racetrack
Well known north-eastern politician, tycoon and local “kingmaker” Newin Chidchob posted on Facebook today that officials in the northeastern province of Buriram have prepared the Chang International Circuit as a special place for “stubborn people” who ignore self-quarantining rules.
— The Thaiger

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90% cut in travel targeted to contain virus spread
The government has come up with a goal to cut public journeys by as much as 90% in order to “flatten the curve” of new coronavirus infections.
— The Phuket News

Prayut warns ‘ineligible’ will have aid money confiscated
The authorities will take money back from people who are not eligible but have registered for the 5,000-baht financial aid granted by the government to ease the impact of Covid-19, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha warned yesterday.
— Bangkok Post

Thailand, Japan sign local currency swap arrangement
The central banks of Thailand and Japan on Tuesday signed a bilateral local currency swap arrangement (BSA) to enhance the financial stability of the two countries, the Bank of Thailand said in a statement.
— Bangkok Post

House Speaker advises Government to use central budget to support medical workers
As the COVID-19 situation intensifies, Speaker of the House of Representatives and former prime minister Chuan Leekpai (ชวน หลีกภัย) has advised the government to address the shortage of medical supplies by using its central budget, instead of having hospitals rely on donations from the public.
— NBT World (video)

Cross-border activity slips to start year
Thailand’s cross-border trade fell by 6.5% year-on-year in the first two months of 2020 as the spreading coronavirus snarled the global economy and logistics systems, particularly in southern China.
— Bangkok Post

Storm warning for upper Thailand
Summer storms are forecast in upper Thailand for the rest of this week, brought by a high-pressure system from China extending over the Northeast Region meeting with humid southeasterly winds from the South China Sea.
— Bangkok Post

Thailand triples cash handouts to S$5.9 billion for workers hit by coronavirus impact
Thailand’s Cabinet has agreed to triple the number of workers receiving cash handouts to nine million to help ease the impact of the spreading coronavirus, a government official said on Tuesday (March 31).
— The Straits Times

UTCC: 2020 exports may fall B500bn
Thailand’s exports are likely to shrink by as much as 500 billion baht this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, trade wars and the US-Iran conflict, leading the country’s outbound shipments to contract by 7%, the worst showing in 10 years, according to a university study.
— Bangkok Post

Wissanu: Face mask supply problems are over
The government yesterday assured healthcare personnel and state officials and volunteers at high risk of contracting the new coronavirus that they will now have a sufficient supply of face masks.
— Bangkok Post

Southbound train service altered, capacity reduced
Changes have been made to the timetable of southbound trains, with several cancellations and service alterations, as the COVID-19 travel restrictions are now in place.
— NBT World (video)

Treasury Urges Airlines to Apply for Payroll Grants by Friday
The Treasury Department released new details Monday night on how it will award grants and loans for airlines affected by the coronavirus pandemic, and urged companies to submit some applications by Friday to begin receiving funds as soon as possible.
— Bangkok Post

Agriculture Ministry: No shortage of farm products
The Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives has taken measures to ensure there are no shortages of agricultural supplies and jobs for workers who have been affected by the COVID-19 situation.
— NBT World (video)

BoT says GDP to shrink until next year
The economy is expected to contract every quarter this year, with the nadir in the second quarter, according to a senior official at the Bank of Thailand.
— Bangkok Post

Cabinet allows BAAC B6bn more in capital
The cabinet approved a proposal yesterday from the Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives (BAAC) to raise registered capital by 6 billion baht this year.
— Bangkok Post

People nationwide applaud and offer moral support to medical personnel
As COVID-19 cases continue to rise, medical staff are working tirelessly to combat the virus. And on March 29, Thais have expressed their appreciation towards these efforts by together clapping their hands from balconies for five minutes in a show of support to those working on the frontline.
— NBT World (video)

Pandemic fund to draw from ministries’ budgets
The government is set to appropriate 10% of the fiscal 2020 budgets of each ministry for a central fund to fight the pandemic and rehabilitate the economy.
— Bangkok Post

Rice prices hit 6-year high as Thailand and Vietnam face drought
International prices of rice have surged as droughts keep production low in key exporters Thailand and Vietnam, while panic buying amid the coronavirus pandemic is also tightening supply.
— Nikkei Asian Review (paywall)

April lockdown batters 30,000 hotels
Over 30,000 hotels are set to lose all revenue in April as the lockdown intensifies in provincial areas, while hoteliers in Phuket are bracing for the greatest losses.
— Bangkok Post

New additions bring GI list to 120 items
The government yesterday added pha mor hom phrae (mauhom fabric based in Phrae province) and hom thong pa thum bananas to the country’s geographical indication (GI) list, a move to generate income for communities.
— Bangkok Post

Imported surgical masks from China and 3M to Thai medical personnel first
Dr Sukhum Kanchanapimai, permanent secretary for public health ministry, said the Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration, met and acknowledged good cooperation from people to help control COVID-19 and also asked people to observe social-distancing by staying 1-2 meters away from one another.
— Pattaya Mail

Confidence index drops to nine-year low
The tourism confidence index plunged to the lowest level in nine years, though the industry is optimistic about the final quarter of 2020, which could lead to a total of 26.6 million international arrivals this year, according to the Tourism Council of Thailand (TCT).
— Bangkok Post

Thailand’s ban on chicken egg exports extended due to expanding demand
Deputy Prime Minister/Commerce Minister Jurin Laksanawisit extended a ban on the export of chicken eggs for 30 days and allowed the Public Health Ministry and the Interior Ministry to manage the distribution of surgical masks.
— Pattaya Mail

Ministry launches online service for small retailers
The Commerce Ministry has kicked off applications that allow customers to buy goods online and enjoy delivery services from smart traditional retail shops, another effort to deal with the impact of Covid-19.
— Bangkok Post

Revellers busted on river raft
A group of 25 young men and women were caught partying in a raft house on the Chao Phraya River in Bang Sai district late on Monday night, in violation of the emergency decree on the coronavirus, governor Panu Yaemsri said on Tuesday.
— Bangkok Post

Thai Province Bans Booze Sales to Curb Virus, Others May Follow
As Thailand seeks to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus, a crackdown on the sale of alcoholic beverages has become one option, after a province of more than 1 million people in the northeast part of the country imposed the prohibition.
— Bloomberg

==

25 Centara Hotels to Close for One Month, Cut Staff Pay
Starting Wednesday, 25 hotels belonging to one of the country’s largest hotel chains will be closed for a month as a result of impacts from coronavirus.
— Khaosod English

Chon Buri bans alcohol sales 6pm to 6am
Chonburi’s governor has banned the sale of alcohol in the province, including Pattaya, from 6am to 6pm, effective immediately, and restaurants are now only allowed to offer takeaways – all to fight the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus.
— The Thaiger

Governor Bans Booze Sale to Curb Coronavirus Spread
Sakon Nakhon became the first province to ban the sale of alcohol in a bid to curb the spread of coronavirus, though a trade guild said the move may have the opposite effect.
— Khaosod English

Chon Buri closes all tourist destinations and more retail businesses
In a bid to stem the spread of COVID-19 in Thailand’s eastern province of Chon Buri, Governor Pakkarathorn Thienchai has ordered the closure of more retail businesses and a ban on the sale of alcohol between 6pm and 6am.
— Thai PBS News

Government House off-limits to reporters after official infected
The Government House has been declared off-limits to all journalists, after an official at the Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) was found to be infected.
— Thai PBS News

Dozens of horses killed by viral African sickness
Tests have confirmed that 73 horses that died in Pak Chong district were killed by a viral disease called African horse sickness, or African plague, provincial livestock development office chief Pasawee Somjai said on Tuesday.
— Bangkok Post

Phuket closes land and sea entry to island, air closure coming April 10 due to Covid19
After the rising number of COVID-19 patients in Thailand, each province has imposed its own measures to limit the spread of this new disease.
— The Pattaya News

A happy reunion for 6 recovered COVID-19 patients as they re-join their families
The Jana Community Hospital, in Thailand’s southern province of Songkhla, discharged six COVID-19 patients today. All are fit and well and ready to return to their families.
— Thai PBS News

Gov’t Extends Ban on Egg, Mask Exports Due to Shortage
Thailand’s Ministry of Commerce said on Monday that it will extend the ban on chicken egg exports and continue handling distribution of locally made surgical masks in an attempt to cushion continuing local shortages.
— Khaosod English

In Germany, Thai expats feel the pain of lockdown
Like many of the 80,000 Thais living in Germany, Nattaporn Wolf was worried when Covid-19 began spreading across the world. She has been monitoring news about the virus ever since it first emerged in the Chinese city of Wuhan.
— Thai PBS News

Beyond Bangkok: Investors Find Diversity in Thailand’s Smart Provincial Cities
When Anucha Meekiatichaikun, a Thailand-born, Paris-trained entrepreneur, returned to his homeland to set up a high-tech dental device business, he looked beyond the bright lights of Bangkok to the historic walled city of Chiang Mai.
— Bangkok Post

Navy denies it is seeking more funds
The navy on Tuesday denied news reports that it is seeking 6.1 billion baht for the purchase of an amphibious transport dock, also known as a landing platform dock (LPD).
— Bangkok Post

Mobile users get 10GB perk from April 10
Mobile users can register for 10 free gigabytes of data usage, starting from April 10, as part of a public assistance scheme during the Covid-19 crisis, according to the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC).
— Bangkok Post

Canadian family of 4 among Phuket’s coronavirus infections
Authorities in the southern island province of Phuket today announced that 3 more members from a Canadian are among 7 new confirmed Covid-19 coronavirus infections.
— The Thaiger

Tham Luang hero defends Lampang from coronavirus flood
Residents in this northern province have taken to social media in praise of their governor for his well-planned fight against the coronavirus. No infections have yet been reported anywhere in Lampang.
— Bangkok Post

Pattaya eyes hotel as quarantine area
Pattaya’s Committee for the Surveillance and Prevention of Covid-19 is proposing to use the city’s Grand Bella Hotel as a temporary medical shelter for people under investigation for Covid-19 coronavirus symptoms.
— The Thaiger

Chula COVID-19 strip test centre
Chulalongkorn University has developed the Chula COVID-19 Strip Test, a fast and convenient preliminary blood test to screen for COVID-19 infection risks, which will become the COVID-19 Response and Diagnostic Center that provides quick and accessible service.
— Thai PBS News

Coronavirus saps ad spending
Media advertising spending is expected to fall by 4.4% to 117 billion baht this year, weighed down by the coronavirus outbreak and economic slump, according to the Media Agency Association of Thailand.
— Bangkok Post

DefMin Withdraws 6.1 Billion Baht Ship Proposal After Criticism
The Defense Ministry on Tuesday asked the Cabinet to approve its proposal to buy a 6.1 billion baht landing ship from China, as criticism rises over the government’s underfunded responses to the coronavirus pandemic.
— Khaosod English

Thailand combating COVID-19
Interview with Dr.Tanarak Plipat Deputy Director General, Department of Disease Control
— Thai PBS News

Musician Dies of Coronavirus, 10th Pandemic Death Toll
Health officials on Tuesday reported the 10th death of coronavirus pandemic in Thailand as 127 new infections are confirmed.
— Khaosod English

A guide to staying safe in quarantine amid the COVID-19 outbreak
As confirmed cases of COVID-19 continue to rise, and many migrant workers return to Isaan from high-risk areas, The Isaan Record has put together a list of tips and facts to help readers stay safe.
— Isaan Record

 

 

Feature photo Sachi23

This week’s Thailand morning news feature photo focuses on COVID-19 in Asean.

 

Find our previous morning news feature photos in the AEC News Today Morning News Feature Photos gallery where you will find a pictorial display of daily life throughout the Asean Economic Community (AEC).

 

 

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John Le Fevre

Thailand editor at AEC News Today

John is an Australian national with more than 40 years experience as a journalist, photographer, videographer, and copy editor.

He has spent extensive periods of time working in Africa and throughout Southeast Asia, with stints in the Middle East, the USA, and England.

He has covered major world events including Operation Desert Shield/ Storm, the 1991 pillage in Zaire, the 1994 Rwanda genocide, the 1999 East Timor independence unrest, the 2004 Asian tsunami, and the 2009, 2010, and 2014 Bangkok political protests.

In 1995 he was a Walkley Award finalist, the highest awards in Australian journalism, for his coverage of the 1995 Zaire (now Democratic Republic of Congo) Ebola outbreak.

Prior to AEC News Today he was the deputy editor and Thailand and Greater Mekong Sub-region editor for The Establishment Post, predecessor of Asean Today.

In the mid-80s and early 90s he owned JLF Promotions, the largest above and below the line marketing and PR firm servicing the high-technology industry in Australia. It was sold in 1995.

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