Thailand morning news for April 16

Thailand morning news for April 16

Thailand morning news‘Not Enough Money,’ Prayut Slashes 3-Month Relief Program
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on Wednesday said the government may be able to pay only one month of the promised three-month cash relief package for workers affected by the coronavirus epidemic.
— Khaosod English

Cabinet to consider easing restrictions in last week of April: PM
After a Cabinet meeting on Wednesday (April 15), Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said he is pleased that the number of infections has remained in two-digit numbers for a while and it appears as if the situation has been brought under control.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Blood Supplies Running Low After Pandemic Drives Donors Away
The Thai Red Cross is facing a severe shortage of blood supplies amid the coronavirus pandemic, the organization said Wednesday.
— Khaosod English

Thirty new cases confirms Covid-19 curve flattening (Updated)
Thailand’s total number of Covid-19 patients rose to 2,643 with 30 new cases confirmed over a 24-hour period, and two more deaths, Dr Taweesin Visanuyothin, spokesman of the government’s Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration, said on Wednesday (April 15).
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Energy Ministry to consider cutting utility bills for large corporations
The Energy Ministry is acknowledging the private sector’s call for it to reduce the price of electricity by 5 per cent for large enterprises and is looking into what can be done to help them, Energy Minister Sontirat Sontijirawong has said.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Banglamung health Department gives warning for visitors to Terminal 21 Foodland on April 5
Pattaya- Notice: If you were at the Foodland supermarket located in Terminal 21 in Pattaya on April 5th between 530 and 600 PM you should self quarantine immediately through April 19 (14 days).
— The Pattaya News

Thai PM admits government can only afford single 5,000 baht subsidy payment
Thailand’s Government can afford to make only the April payment of the 5,000 baht cash hardship subsidies to nine million freelancers, self-employed, small retailers and employees not covered by the social security scheme.
— Thai PBS News

Young Thais join ‘Milk Tea Alliance’ in online backlash that angers Beijing
Young Thais have banded together to pillory the Chinese embassy in Bangkok over a feud with Thai celebrities, part of a growing online movement to show solidarity with Taiwan and Hong Kong that has annoyed Beijing.
— CNA

Drought leaves Phrae fish farms gasping for life
Fish on farms across Phrae are being killed off as drought tightens its grip on the northern province. Water levels are sinking fast in agricultural ponds in the northern province, depriving fish of oxygen.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Agriculture Ministry urges Bt5,000 handouts for farmers as global food shortages loom
The Agriculture Ministry is asking the government to hand farmers monthly payments of Bt5,000 for six months to maintain the agricultural supply amid forecasts of global food shortages within three months.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

People living in crowded conditions instructed to wear masks at all times
The Public Health Ministry is encouraging people living in slums and in construction camps to wear cloth masks when at home and avoid going out.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Khon Kaen to sue anyone who conceals infection
Residents of Khon Kaen will face criminal charges if they are caught concealing information about Covid-19 cases or transmission, the governor warned.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

CCSA insists fewer new cases not from testing less
The Center for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) has dismissed a claim that a lower number of tests is the reason behind the reduced number of daily confirmed COVID-19 cases in Thailand.
— Newsline (video)

Health authority asks patients not to hide symptoms, personal history
The Ministry of Public Health has revealed that Thailand has already conducted about 100,000 COVID-19 tests and urged people to refrain from withholding information from medical officials inquiring about their background, as the number of medical staffers contracting the new coronavirus increased to about 100.
— Newsline (video)

ICU bed numbers assured
The Department of Medical Services insists there will be enough Intensive Care Unit (ICU) beds as it readies 300 more to accommodate Covid-19 cases in Greater Bangkok.
— Bangkok Post

Ex-air force doctors recalled for virus fight
Fifty former military doctors have been recalled to the Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF) in an urgent mission to battle the Covid-19 pandemic.
— Bangkok Post

Government: Appeals on 5,000-baht cash hand out program accepted online only
The Ministry of Finance has reiterated that the only means to file an appeal about the eligibility to receive the 5,000 baht COVID-19 compensation from the government for three months is via its online channel which will be available next week.
— Newsline (video)

Pattaya may begin reopening May 1, governor says
Pattaya may begin reopening businesses May 1 if the current downward trend in Covid-19 infections continues, Chonburi Gov. Pakarathorn Thienchai said.
— Pattaya Mail

Nonthaburi, Udon Thani to loosen lockdowns as new virus cases drop
The provinces of Nonthaburi and Udon Thani are loosening partial lockdowns following the recent drop in the rate of new coronavirus infections.
— Bangkok Post

Coronavirus aid rejectees raise ruckus at ministry
Dozens of people who on Tuesday turned up at the Finance Ministry to appeal its decision to reject their claims for a 5,000-baht cash handout to help tide them over the Covid-19 crisis have now threatened to rally at Government House.
— Bangkok Post

Provinces continue stringent COVID 19 curbing measures
All provinces have continued to enforce stringent measures to minimize the spread of COVID-19.
— Newsline (video)

Grocery trucks make a comeback in Thailand as coronavirus pandemic keeps people at home
Traditional mobile vendors in Thailand are making a comeback as the Covid-19 pandemic forces businesses to close and people to stay home.
— South China Morning Post

Government receives private sector’s donation for hospitals
The Prime Minister has received cash donation from private companies for, supporting medical staffers in the country in their fight against the COVID-19 outbreak.
— Newsline (video)

Fuel retailers abandon plans as virus cripples demand
Major fuel retailers are adjusting operations in response to plummeting demand and prices caused in part by the pandemic.
— Bangkok Post

Thailand boosts exports of rubber products amid COVID-19
Thailand is maintaining exports of rubber products and processed rubber as global demand surges, particularly for those relating to protective gear against COVID-19 su
— Vietnamplus

Covid-19 in Thailand: Are we missing something?
Thailand is rapidly expanding testing for Covid-19. More importantly, the people in charge are working towards providing access to testing to all who need it.
— Bangkok Post

China presents medical supplies to Thailand symbolizing strong friendship
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Public Health Anutin Charnvirakul received 100,000 surgical masks, 20,000 N95 masks and 2,500 PPE suits from Charge d’affaires of the Chinese Embassy Yang Xin.
— Pattaya Mail

Mentally ill man prosecuted for posts about King Rama IX commits suicide
Nathee (family name withheld), who was on bail pending an appeal against a conviction for expressing opinions about King Rama IX on Facebook, was found dead in a canal on 13 April after succeeding in his third suicide attempt. Doctors and his father testified that he was mentally ill, but this was still not enough to escape conviction.
— Prachatai English

Thailand Post says it has delivered nearly 28 million masks to ministries
Thailand Post has dispatched 27.8 million medical masks to the Interior and Public Health ministries.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Animals saved from forest fires treated at a clinic in Chiang Mai
Twenty wild animals have been rescued from forest fires in Thailand’s northern province of Chiang Mai and they are now under the care of an animal clinic operated by the Office of Conservation.
— Thai PBS News

At-risk people to be screened at home to curb contagion
The Department of Health Service Support has announced guidelines for medics to screen people for Covid-19 in their homes in order to contain the spread of the virus.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Software disqualifies millions of poor from govt handout scheme
Deprived of customers by the lockdown, motorbike taxi driver Somboon Kongka turned in desperation to the Bt5,000 subsidy scheme launched by the government to help people through the Covid-19 outbreak.
— Thai PBS News

Thai Chamber of Commerce floats phased lockdown lift
The Thai Chamber of Commerce is preparing to deliver its plan to lift the lockdown to the government.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Thailand BOI Approves Steps to Ease COVID-19 Impact, Accelerate Investment in Medical Sector
The Board of Investment of Thailand (BOI) today approved a series of measures to mitigate the impact of the coronavirus or COVID-19 outbreak on business, including steps to encourage rapid investment in the manufacturing of medical equipment.
— Bangkok Post

Thais find novel way to mark virus-hit Songkran
Thai temple-goers poured water into the hands of monks Wednesday using a bamboo pole decorated with mangoes and bananas — a novel hack to enforce social distancing while honoring the country’s New Year traditions.
— CNA

Rayong extends ban on alcohol to April 30
The ban on the sale of alcoholic beverages has been extended to April 30 in Rayong as part of a move to stem the spread of Covid-19, deputy provincial governor Piroon Hemarak said on Wednesday (April 15).
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Mekong river groups urge China to show transparency after dam report
Groups working to protect the Mekong River have called for greater transparency and cooperation from China after a report that Chinese dams held back water during a damaging drought in downstream countries last year.
— Bangkok Post

Trillion-baht public-private investment projects planned
Thailand plans public-private partnership (PPP) projects worth 1.09 trillion baht during 2020-2027, the finance ministry said on Wednesday, as the government tries to revive the struggling economy amid the coronavirus pandemic.
— Bangkok Post

Right groups call for Thai authorities to ensure the health and safety of prisoners during the COVID-19 pandemic
11 human rights organizations issued a joint open letter to the Department of Corrections Director-General Pol Col Naras Savestanan calling for the Thai authorities to take immediate steps to release prisoners and ensure the health and safety of all those in detention facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic.
— Prachatai English

NBTC’s prepaid fees request unheeded
Three major mobile operators have shrugged off requests from the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) to lower service fees, insisting their new prepaid promotional pandemic packages suffice to ease public burden, with up to 30% fee reductions.
— Bangkok Post

Police nab another suspect in notorious Forex-3D Ponzi scheme
Police in Bangkok have arrested yet another suspect in the infamous Forex-3D Ponzi scheme which duped thousands with false promises of high returns and resulted in losses of tens of billions of baht.
— The Thaiger

Mobile blood driver deployed in Khon Kaen
“Families that have 3 or more people who are willing to donate blood, authorities will be sending mobile units that will visit homes in the main city area of Khon Kaen province today.”
— The Thaiger

Hundreds of Gamblers, Drinkers Arrested for Breaching Curfew: Gov’t
Many curfew breakers in Thailand have turned out to be gamblers, drinkers and drug addicts who apparently maintained their habit despite the COVID-19 pandemic, said a government official on Tuesday.
— Khaosod English

Prayut will consider easing lockdown in last week of April
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said on Wednesday (April 15) that he will evaluate the Covid-19 situation in the last week of April to see if some restrictions can be lifted.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

GPO works on boosting production of drugs for chronic conditions
The Government Pharmaceutical Organisation (GPO) has said it is increasing the production of medications for chronic diseases by 50 per cent and is calling on hospitals to cooperate by prescribing medicines appropriately, said Dr Mukdavan Prakobvaitayakit, GPO’s deputy managing director.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Wave of Thai returnees puts country on its guard
Thailand is bracing for the return of hundreds more Thais from overseas, potentially adding to a Covid-19 case count which is currently on a declining trend.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Songkhla zookeepers close up whilst keeping the tigers cool
Songkhla Zoo has announced its closure today as part of the southern province’s lockdown, but the zookeepers still have to take care of animals with the summer temperatures high and on the rise.
— The Thaiger

PM urges gold sellers not to rush
The prime minister urged moderation as people hurry to cash in their gold after the price rose to its highest level in seven years, fuelled by continuing concerns about the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the global economy.
— Bangkok Post

Ministry of Public Health to discuss plan to help Thai traditional massage practitioners
The Ministry of Public Health will hold a meeting with the Ministry of Finance to discuss measures to help Thai traditional massage practitioners, as many of them don’t qualify for the government’s financial aid of 5,000 baht a month.
— The Pattaya News

86 Khon Kaen medics quarantined after fifth Covid case emerges
Khon Kaen’s Nam Phong Hospital has had to quarantine 86 medical personnel after a 63-year-old Covid-19 patient visited the hospital on Tuesday (April 14).
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Operation and maintenance contracts for two motorways to be proposed to Cabinet
The Department of Highways is ready to propose operation and maintenance contracts for the Bang Pa-in-Nakhon Ratchasima and the Bang Yai-Kanchanaburi motorways worth Bt61 billion to the Cabinet in May this year.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Chonburi malls among first in country to reopen
Chonburi was among the first provinces in the country to partially lift its lockdown on Tuesday (April 14) as some shops reopened.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Govt takes Bt5.4bn hit as 3rd lottery draw cancelled
The April 1 lottery draw has been postponed for a second time, from May 2 to May 16, the Government Lottery Office (GLO) announced on Wednesday (April 15).
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Govt urged to allow boats carrying necessities to supply hard-hit IDP camp
Mae Hong Son province is asking the government to reopen a route for merchant boats, as 2,374 people in a camp for the internally displaced are short of food supplies.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Opinion: What COVID-19 Crisis Means to the Student Movement
Since COVID-19 has denied us the important opportunity to build on the momentum that we created two months ago, we cannot go on about and do anything without thinking about it carefully.
— Khaosod English

COVID-19: Thailand extends ban on passenger flights until end-April
Thailand has extended a ban on incoming passenger flights until the end of April in a bid to curb the coronavirus outbreak, the country’s aviation body said on Wednesday.
— CNA

Thailand’s health industries are improving care to safeguard the human foundations of the economy
The covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of robust health systems and medical supply chains in responding to crises.
— Bangkok Post

From Yesterday to Tomorrow: Reinventing Education in Thailand
When academics from a leading Bangkok university sought international partners to help equip Thai students for jobs in the new digital age, they visited a U.S. city that had once been a symbol of old economy “rust belt” decline.
— Bangkok Post

Kingdom must act now to woo post-Covid investors: Viboon
Industrial park operator Amata wants the government to stabilise the economy by launching a new measure to woo international investors and spending Bt1.9 trillion on recovery.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Virus pandemic linked to destruction of wildlife and world’s ecosystems
Covid-19 is the latest example of how human impact on biodiverse areas and wildlife habitats is linked to the spread of infectious diseases.
— Bangkok Post

Gold glitters as cash-strapped Thais sell jewellery amid COVID-19 pandemic
Thais are flocking to Bangkok’s Chinatown to sell their gold jewellery as the price of the precious metal spikes and the economy tanks due to the coronavirus pandemic.
— CNA

Australian man arrested over child sexual abuse charge
Thailand’s Crime Suppression Division police have arrested 63 year old William James Petrie, an Australian man living in Central Thailand on sexual abuse charges in his home country.
— The Thaiger

New Phuket governor announced, old Governor shunted off to Petchaburi
The southern island province of Phuket is to have a new governor, it was announced today. Phuket’s governor, Pakkapong Tawipat started work on the island on October 1, 2018.
— The Thaiger

Yaowarat gets busy again
The streets in Bangkok’s Yaowarat area were busy as usual on Wednesday (April 15) when people decided to go there not just to shop for food and cooking essentials, but also to sell off their gold ornaments now that the price of the precious metal has risen by Bt550 per baht weight.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Pattaya Beach vendors remove drink coolers and chairs after reports of several coolers broken into by thieves desperate for booze overnight
Pattaya residents have noted over the past day many Beach vendors removing their chairs, possessions and drink coolers from the beaches around the area leading to questions of if the removal of items was an order from authorities or a way to further clear off the beach during the Covid-19 Coronavirus crisis.
— The Pattaya News

Songkhla sends medical team to help Phuket battle contagion
Songkhla governor escorted a team of 50 medics from Songkhal Nakarin Hospital, led by hospital director Dr Puttisak Puttawibul, to help treat Covid-19 patients in Phuket.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Krabi drinking party raided by police
Four Thai women and four foreign men drinking at an outdoor party in Krabi on Wednesday (April 15) got a nasty shock when police arrived to arrest them.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

LAOs given green light to reduce or waive rental fees
Vendors and entrepreneurs hit by the Covid-19 crisis were handed a lifeline on Wednesday (April 15) when local administrative organisations (LAOs) were given permission to suspend or lower their rent.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Startup delivery service throws lifeline to Bangkok food vendors
As the coronavirus outbreak devastates Bangkok’s independent sellers and local businesses, particularly in its tourism-reliant old quarter, one is reinventing itself as a lifeline for others.
— Coconuts Thailand

Chonburi ready to reopen in two weeks
Chonburi’s lockdown will be lifted on May 1 if there is no change in the Covid-19 situation, according to the province’s public relations office.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Covid-19 crisis delays Thailand’s biofuel future
Thailand’s Energy Ministry has postponed a nationwide plan to switch to biofuels until the Covid 19 crisis subsides.
— The Thaiger

NBTC to urge telecom operators to lower mobile phone subscription fees
The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) has called a meeting with telecom operators on Wednesday to ask them to consider lowering mobile phone service fees in all packages for subscribers by between 10 to 30 per cent.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Covid-19 an inevitable professional hazard for some people
People in some professions are more at risk of being infected by Covid-19 because of the nature of their jobs and, therefore, must take special precautions, Dr Yong Poovorawan, an expert virologist at Chulalongkorn University, said.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Thai fisherman swimming home from Malaysia rescued from water
An exhausted Thai fisherman was rescued from the sea this morning as he attempted to swim from Malaysia back to his hometown.
— Coconuts Thailand

8,000 Thais Expected to Return Home From Malaysia
About 8,000 Thai nationals are expected to return home from Malaysia later this month and then be quarantined in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, said a Thai official on Tuesday.
— Khaosod English

Registration opens on April 15 for return of water deposits
Water users can register from 8am on Wednesday (April 15) for return of their water deposits.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Male suspect arrested after allegedly stabbing a 50 year old Thai woman on a road in Pattaya this morning
A male Thai suspect has been arrested after he allegedly stabbed a woman several times on a road in Pattaya this morning.
— The Pattaya News

Man drowns in waste treatment pond after fleeing police checkpoint
This morning at 4am a man on a motorbike, trying to evade a police checkpoint in Songkhla province (southern Thailand), drowned in a sludge treatment pool.
— The Thaiger

 

 

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

 

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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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