Advance Blog

July 16, 2021
Australian Embassy

Headlines summary as of 15 July 2021


Newly confirmed case(s)Total CasesPatients under severe conditions and those using ventilatorsDischarged from hospitalFrom 1 April, totally confirmed cases (third wave)1st dose vaccine recipients (from 28 Feb)
9,186 (79 from prisons)372,215 [last seven days: 63,895]3,276/ 839266,127 (+5,129)343,35210,163,340 (+275,216)15.35% of the population
Local transmissionFrom abroadBeing hospitalised/ in field-hospital/ quarantinedConfirmed cases in BangkokDeath tollTotal vaccination (doses)2nd dose vaccine recipients (from 28 Feb)
9,058 [7,481 (get tested in hospital) + 1,604 (active case finding)]22 (in SQ)103,056 [44,474 in field hospital]106,131 (+2,224)3,032 (+98) [last seven days: 570]13,533,717 (+303,036)20.44% of the population3,370,377(+27,820)5.09% of the population
  • The National Vaccine Committee is considering placing a quota on the export of domestically-manufactured AstraZeneca vaccine as COVID-19 infection in Thailand surges.  It is a move that stirs concerns on vaccine protectionism and is likely to impact neighbouring countries that are also hit hard by the pandemic. In late June, AstraZeneca Thailand said its partner manufacturing facility, Siam Bioscience would produce 180 million doses this year.  About one third would be allocated for Thailand and two thirds is for export to elsewhere in Southeast Asia.  Thailand has been negotiating with the vaccine maker to procure 10 million doses of AZ vaccine per month from AZ’s current commitment of providing Thailand with 5-6 million doses.  Source:  Reuters  Bangkok Post
    • The Deputy Public Health Minister gave an interview saying that the quota is just the Committee recommendation, not the resolution and that the Department of Disease Control will need to consider this before making the decision. The Deputy Minister said, however, that should it is necessary, the authority needs to enforce related laws  to make sure the Kingdom could secure enough doses.—Inside Thailand
  1. A deal by Thonburi Hospital Group to bring in Pfizer vaccines is now 60 per cent complete but there is still doubt over the government’s regulation. The chairman of the hospital private conglomerate said that  the group is working with a government agency that he cannot name yet to bring in 20 million doses the Pfizer vaccine with 5 million to arrive this month.—Thai Enquirer


  • The staunch Conservative and outspoken extended royal family member M.C. Julajerm Yugala posted on his Facebook a metaphor that Thailand is sinking and that the pandemic could even flip the ship upside down.—Siam Rath
  • The PM is scheduled to join the APEC Informal Leaders’ Retreat virtually at the Government House after he was on self-quarantine for 14 days after he was in close contact with a confirmed case when he travelled down to preside over the opening of Phuket Sandbox.—Prachachat Turakij
  • The PM is tested negative for COVID in his third test. He is expected to return to work at the Government House from tomorrow onwards.—Matichon

Analysis/ opinion

  • Prachachat Turakij made a special report determining the possibilities of the PM resigning or dissolution of the House. The media said that resigning is against the PM confident and determining personality, the next best viable option might be to reshuffle the cabinet. The media interviewed two main figures from ruling Democrat and Bhumjaithai parties which affirmed that the parties will stick with the PM and the government to steer clear off the pandemic crisis.—Prachachat Turakij


  • The private sector is not confident that Thailand will be able to open its entire country in 120 days as mandated by PM Prayut, given the heightening of the lockdown measures in 10 provinces since early July.  Instead, the Federation of Tourism and Federation of Thai Industries forecast that only some provinces that can control the outbreak with 70 percent of the population vaccinated.  The same view is endorsed by the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), which has re-strategized to start the reopening in selected provinces that have been left behind.
  • TAT confirmed the reopening timeline as follows:

•             Surat Thani’s islands of Koh Samui, Koh Tao and Koh Pha-ngan reopen under Samui Plus program today (15 July)

•             Krabi province and its islands (Koh PP, Koh Ngai and Railey), Phang-nga (Khao Lak and Koh Yao) will reopen in August

•             Chiang Mai (Muang district, Mae Rim, Mae Tang and Doi Tao), Chonburi (Pattaya, Bang La Mung and Sattahip districts), Buriram (Muang district and Sanam Chang arena) will open on 1 September

•             The reopening of Bangkok, Phetchaburi (Cha-am) and Prachuabkirikhan (Hua Hin) slated on 1 October depends on vaccination rollout and the province’s capacity to handle the outbreak.  If the deadline is missed, Tourism and Sports Ministry said the government plans to keep its goal to reopen Bangkok within this year.  Sources:  Thansettakij newspaper, 14 July 2021 Bangkok Post 

  • Hua Hin seaside town confirms it will reopen on 1 October and will allow fully vaccinated foreign tourists to visit it without being subjected to quarantine under the slogan Hua Hin Recharge.  The announcement came when infection rate in Hua Hin is on the upward trend.  Prachuab Kirikhan province is aiming to vaccinate 100 percent of workers in the tourism and services sector, and 70 percent of the general population of Hua Hin municipality by 30 September.  Source:  Bangkok Post
  • Federation of Thai Industries expects the lockdown will incur a loss of 100 billion Baht for the economy and business sectors in 14 days, wherein the government’s 500 billion Baht loan is insufficient to compensate for the loss.  Likewise, the Thai Chamber of Commerce noted the 42 billion Baht package of financial assistance for the afflicted announced earlier this week is also not enough.  TCC asked the government to support a 50 percent co-payment subsidy for the monthly salaries of employees, reinstate the cash-handout Rao Chana scheme or increase the government co-payment subsidy scheme from the existing 3,000 to 6,000 Baht to boost domestic consumption in Q3 and Q4 of 2021.  Source:  Thansettakij newspaper, 14 July 2021 Bangkok Post 
  • Krungthai Bank projected that Thailand’s 2021 GDP will grow by 0.5-1.3 percent, revised from its original forecast of 0.8-1.6 percent if the outbreak is contained by September and economic activities resume in October.  It expects the current outbreak would need 6 months to be reined in (April – September).  Krungthai Bank expects the government to launch fiscal injection measures in Q3 or Q4 to stimulate the economy.  It forecasts a +3.6 percent GDP growth for 2022  Source:  TNN Thailand  Bangkok Insight  Thansettakij newspaper, 14 July 2021
  • The Finance Ministry has ordered state-owned financial institutions to consider suspending principal and interest payments for all clients suffering from the fallout of the pandemic, rather than using a case-by-case basis.  The cabinet earlier requested for MoF and Bank of Thailand to discuss with related parties ways to ease the burden of banks’ clients from the pandemic’s impact.  Source:  Bangkok Post
  • Thai gold prices have climbed 4 percent in the past three weeks, spurred by a 2 percent increase in the global gold price, the Baht’s depreciation and fears over a major uptick in the number of new infections.  Source:  Bangkok Post
The Australian Embassy Bangkok

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