Advance Blog

February 4, 2022
Australian Embassy

Headlines summary as of 3 February 2022

News

Newly confirmed cases

Total Cases

Death toll

Hospitalised/ intensive care patients

9,909

Domestic +9,721

Abroad+188

2,475,632

22

86,473

 

Total recovered patients

( since 1 Jan 2022)

 

182,756

Total vaccination

1st dose vaccine recipients (28 Jan -3 Feb)

2nd dose vaccine recipients (28 Jan -3 Feb)

3rd dose vaccine recipients (28 Jan -3 Feb)

116,110,883 (+290,330)

52,420,149

(+35,339  yesterday)

 

75.4 %

48,790,423

(+55,112 yesterday)

 

70.1 %

14,900,311

(+199,879 yesterday)

 

21.4%

                                                                                                                                             Sources : Center for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) and Department of Control Disease

Covid-19 situation/change regulation

  • Government spokesperson said that the Prime Minister issued the Ministry of Education to increase the number of on-site schools ( reopening) soon. According to Ministry of Education, 99% of  teachers and  education staff receive the first dose of vaccine, while 80 % receive second dose . In the meantime, 90% of  students aged from 12 to17  receive the first and second doses of vaccines Thairath
  • Director-General of Disease Control department said to the media today that the number of new Covid-19 cases that increase up to almost 10,000 today and will be higher as the department forecasted on the pandemic trend. However, this will not be severe since the death number are still low and more people receive vaccines Thairath

   Politics

  • Former Palang Pracharat Party (PPRP) Secretary-General, Thammanat Prompao defended the departure of his and 20 fellow MPs from the PPRP against criticism of them trying to use their removal to making a deal for a cabinet seat development of the Thai political system. Sanook Manageronline
  • Uttama Savanayana, one of the founder of the Sang Anakot Thai  party (Building Thailand’s Future), gave a signal that the party aim to nominate the former deputy prime minister Somkid Jatusripitak as the party’s prime ministerial candidate. However Somkid has yet made a decision on this move Thairath Bangkokpost
  • Bangkok governor candidate, Suchatvee Suwansawat, from the Democrat party , is facing a allegation of usual weath and malfeasance approched by the House of Committee on corruption. Suchatchavee, who is former president of King Mongkut’s Institute of Technology Ladkrabang (KMITL) said that he is ready to be investigated.Bangkokpost  BBCThai
  • Suthep Tuaksuban, former PDPRC leader who led a 6-month protest to oust Yingluck administration, said on his facebook  asking Thai people to stay optimistic for having Prime Minister to complete a 4-year term in the office adding that there would be no parliament dissolution  Thestandard

Human Rights

  • Thai police are continuing a series of harassments and intimidations against anti-government activists and journalists by visiting homes unannounced and stalking relatives and friends of their targets.
  • At least 18 activists and journalists have been followed by the police according to Internet Law Reform Dialogue (iLaw) this year, including Sirote Klampaiboon a prominent reporter for Voice TV, have been visited by the police at their house between January 1 and 24.
  • In respond , a university student protest group from Thammasat University, the United Front of Thammasat and Demonstration, on Wednesday filed a petition to the House Committee on Political Development, Mass Communications and Public Participation to ask for an investigation into the police Thaienquirer
  • Human rights groups have urged Thailand not to deport Keomanivong,Lao political activist, over concern he could be imprisoned by its communist government if sent back. Keomanivong is a member of the “Free Lao” movement, an informal group set up to promote human rights and democracy in Laos, comprised mainly of Lao migrant workers and activists in Thailand.Reuters

 Economics:

Akara Mine

  • The parliament-appointed Industrial Committee had invited officials from the Ministry of Industry (MOI) to provide clarifications on Akara gold mine.  MOI sent the Deputy Director-General of Basic Industry and Mining Department to attend the session, who said he knew nothing about the renewal of the mining licenses to Akara mine and the TAFTA lawsuit because the information is confidential.  The parliament committee, headed by Pheu Thai Party’s Jiraporn Sinthupairak and Sutin Klangsaeng, slammed the MOI for intentionally sending an uninformed official to discuss a topic of national interest.  Sources:  Matichon Baan Muang  Voice TV

Others

  • The Office of the Trade Competition Commission plans to revise the Trade Competition Law 2017 to define digital business in order to ensure fair competition and prevent monopolization of this emerging sector.  Other aspects of the law will be revised as well since it has been enforced for 5 years and needed updating.  Source:  Krungthep Turakij newspaper, 4 February 2022
  • Board of Investment (BOI) has set an investment target of 640 billion Baht for 2022, same target as year 2021 which has significantly picked up from 2020.  For 2022, smart electronics, medical, Electric Vehicles (EV) and target industries in the EEC are projected to lure the most investments.  For 2021, BOI application value had risen by 59 percent YoY to total 642.3 billion Baht, while the number of projects increased by 5 percent to reach 1,674.  Of this figure, FDI application value constituted 455 billion Baht; a 163 percent surge YoY.  The top 3 investors are from Japan, China and Singapore, with the top 5 industries including electronic appliances; medical; petrochemical, agriculture and processed food; and automotive and parts.  The combined investment value in activities classified as BCG (ie: biotechnology, agriculture and processed food) soared by 123 percent YoY to tally 152 billion Baht.  The BOI also launched new incentives for digital trading platforms for agricultural products and agri-food industrial estates/parks, which are aimed at driving Thailand towards becoming the bio-hub.  Source:  Krungthep Turakij newspaper, 4 February 2022  Bangkok Post
  • An insider source revealed that the Electronic Vehicle (EV) package will be submitted for the cabinet’s consideration within February.  The government is rushing to roll out the EV package as neighbouring countries are also vying to become production hubs.  However, the private sector questions where the government will acquire the budget to fund the EV subsidies and the charging station which investors believe are too costly to even attain a breakeven.  Source:  Krungthep Turakij newspaper, 4 February 2022 
  • Despite inbound travel difficulty, foreign investors are still looking to acquire warehouse facilities and manufacturing property as an investment, according CBRE Thailand. The recovery of FDI in the manufacturing sector last year will boost demand for ready-built factories. In Q3 of 2021, FDI in the manufacturing sector totalled UD1.57 billion, the highest since Q1 of 2019 at $1.85 billion.  The shift in supply chain would continue in 2022, with manufacturers continuing to build resilience into their network to protect businesses against future disruptions.  Source:  Bangkok Post
  • Business operators have submitted to the Labour Ministry requests for 90,000 migrant workers under terms of the MoU signed with Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar last December.  Labour Ministry said the first group of 158 Cambodian workers under the MoU are currently placed under a 7-day quarantine and will soon be taken to their workplaces.  Source:  Bangkok Post
  • The four phases of the government’s ‘Khon La Khrueng’  subsidy scheme are expected to inject almost 400 billion Baht into the economy, according to Ministry of Finance.  Source:  Bangkok Post
  • Thailand targets rice export target of 7 million tonnes this year, 14.6 percent higher than in 2021, according to the leading rice exporters body.  The world’s third-largest rice exporter shipped 6.11 million tonnes of the grain last year and 5.7 million tonnes in 2020, the lowest volume in two decades.  Rice exports should benefit this year from a stable Baht making prices more competitive and better weather conditions, according to Thai Rice Exporters Association.  To this end, Thailand is expected to produce 19.5 million tonnes of paddy this year, 18 percent up on last year’s 16.5 million tonnes.  Source:  Bangkok Post

The Australian Embassy Bangkok
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