Advance Blog

June 26, 2020
Australian Embassy

Headlines summary as of 26 June 2020

News

  • Updates related to COVID-19:
    • Today Thailand reports 4 newly confirmed cases, a total of 3,162 cases. Out of the total number, 3,040 have been discharged from hospital (or at 96.14%); 64 are being hospitalised. The death toll is still at 58. The new cases arrived from Sudan and UAE and have been in state quarantine. This is the 32nd consecutive days that there is no local transmission in Thailand.
    • Yesterday, the National Security Council as the chair of a sub-committee in CCSA has reached a decision to extend the emergency decree for the third time until 31 July. The decision will need to pass through the CCSA on Monday and the cabinet on Tuesday for resolution.
  • Office of the Narcotics Control Board (ONCB) said heroin has made a comeback on the drug scene with more youths, who are unaware of hidden dangers, using the narcotic. The ONCB’s anti-drug operation centre has taken note of the rising number of teenagers aged between 15-18 admitted to rehabilitation programmes for heroin addiction.—all media outlet

Politics

  • Breaking: The Supreme Court has sentenced two years and eight month jail term without suspension upon four core members of the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (Red-shirt protesters) for their alleged roles in the siege of late Privy Council president Prem Tinsulanonda’s residence in 2007. The four core members includes Veerakarn, Nattawut, Wiputhalaeng and Dr. Weng.
  • The Criminal Court on Thursday morning handed down the ruling on the case in which Thanet Anantawong had been charged for making five Facebook posts in 2015 criticising the now-defunct National Council for Peace and Order and the army, after being detained for almost four years.—all media outlet
  • Speaking at the National Police Headquarter yesterday, the PM said he the students should focus on their study to get a decent job. He said the students should not “waste their brains with some non-sense things”.—all media outlet
  • There is a discrepancy of explanation between the Police and other security apparatus on what the motive of the recent discovered cache of armoury is. The former said the weapons were intended to be used to stir political unrest and the latter said it involves illicit drug groups.—all media outlet

Business:

CPTPP

  • The Parliament-appointed CPTPP Committee has asked for an extension on the deadline to complete their studies on the impacts of Thailand’s accession, which originally has a 30-day timeframe and is due on 10 July.  The committee needs more time to explore controversial issues such as pharmaceutical patent and UPOV clause.  The new deadline is to be decided by the committee at their meeting next week.  https://www.thaipost.net/main/detail/69618 https://www.thansettakij.com/content/Macro_econ/439663

EEC

  • Advanced Info Service (AIS) will support the 5G network in the EEC with a focus on ICT infrastructure to enhance the management capability in the ground, air and marine sectors.  In the EEC, Amata Corporation, Saha Pathana Inter Holding and WHA Group have begun 5G testing under Smart City initiatives. BBS Joint Venture Group has kick-started the testing of 5G smart airport features in preparation at U-tapao Airport.  The 5G testing was also carried out by the Port Authority of Thailand in the Laem Chabang area.  Source:  https://www.bangkokpost.com/business/1941232/ais-looks-to-leverage-5g-network-in-eec

Tourism

  • The Public Health Ministry committee assigned to evaluate Covid-19 situation is preparing proposals on the reopening of the tourism industry, including the travel bubble concept, for consideration by the Covid-19 Situation Administration Centre on Monday.  The Committee Head contended that Thailand might have to allow new infections to occur if it wants the economy to get back on track.  Source:  https://www.bangkokpost.com/thailand/general/1941088/bubble-tourism-wears-flak
  • Association of Thai Travel Agents (ATTA) is urging the government to hasten bilateral agreements with 20 low-risk provinces in China for the second half of the year, including setting a daily quota of 200-300 tourists from the mainland.  ATTA will also request that the Labour Ministry extend the 62 percent aid from the Social Security Fund to the end of the year.  Source: https://www.bangkokpost.com/business/1941196/operators-pin-hopes-on-low-risk-chinese-areas

Others

  • Finance Ministry’s first blockchain savings bonds worth 200 million Baht were sold out in 99 seconds.  The savings bonds are part of the government’s economic rehabilitation plan to encourage low-income earners to save money in risk-free assets.  Source:  https://www.pdmo.go.th
  • Energy Ministry is investing 230 billion Baht in energy development projects to stimulate the post-pandemic economy.  Of this figure, 200 billion Baht will go to EGAT and PTT, while the remaining 30 billion Baht will be allocated to Energy for All Scheme.  Source:  https://www.bangkokpost.com/business/1941212/energy-spending-sped-up
  • Commerce Ministry’s Department of International Trade Promotion urges its Thai Trade Centres in China to promote Thai exports through online channels.  Chinese online platforms have increased significantly since the pandemic outbreak.  Source:  https://www.nationthailand.com/news/3039028
  • Thai Airways is seeking help from authorities after the Airports of Thailand (AoT) recalled over 50 percent of the check-in counters and aircraft stands at Suvarnabhumi airport.  This is because Thai Airways has lost its status as a state-owned enterprise and therefore no longer holds privileges over the use of facilities and equipment at the airport.  Source: https://www.bangkokpost.com/business/1941220/thai-airways-feels-loss-of-state-owned-enterprise-status
  • Property owners will no longer be required to report the presence of foreign tenants in their properties as often as they do now, starting from next Tuesday.  The Immigration Bureau has changed the reporting frequency in Section 38 of the Immigration Act to only when they arrive.  Source: https://www.bangkokpost.com/business/1941048/tm30-reporting-rule-on-foreigners-eased

ASEAN/World

  • The 36th ASEAN Summit has begun via teleconference, pledging to cooperate in curbing the spread of COVID-19.
The Australian Embassy Bangkok
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