BANGKOK, 21 May 2014 – The Tourism Council of Thailand (TCT) expressed belief that the invocation of martial law would benefit the country’s tourism sector in the long run.

The agency also said the martial law is expected to effectively contain the political crisis, which had escalated to a spate of violent attacks during the past months.

Over the past, the prolonged protests which lasted for over 6 months have negatively impacted tourism industry. For this reason, the TCT has revised down the number of tourist arrivals this year by 10 percent from 29.92 million to 26.84 million. The revenue is also set to shrink to 1.1 trillion baht this year.

During the first quarter of 2014, the number of tourists has dropped to 6.6 million or down 5.86 percent from the same period last year.

The agency noted that the imposition of martial law will not boost tourist arrivals in the short term and related bodies need to step up campaigns in order to attract more tourists from major markets. However, the tourism sector is set to bounce back from the crisis in the long run.

BANGKOK, 21 May 2014 The Ministry of Commerce (MOC) is planning to revise its second-half export figures and is convinced that second quarter exports will recover.

The MOC’s permanent secretary Srirat Rastapana stated that the revision of overall export figures in the second half of this year is underway, while commercial counselors in 64 countries are called in to assess directions and export figures.

Several relevant agencies have revised their estimates downwards, especially the Office of National Economics and the Social Development Board (NESDB) which have recently decreased their exports estimate to 3.7 percent. However, the MOC is waiting for the private sector’s opinion to assess the situation together.

Nevertheless, she believes that exports in the second quarter will rebound from the contraction in the first quarter.

BANGKOK, 21 May 2014 – The Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives is holding up a trade fair to help northern lychee farmers expand their products to reach Bangkok consumers. 

BANGKOK, 21 May 2014  The 2015 annual appropriations bill is likely to be delayed and the budget can only be 50% disbursed, if there is no general election within the year, according to the Bureau of the Budget. 

BANGKOK, 21 May 2014  – The Democrat Party has expressed support for the Army’s invocation of martial law following an internal meeting. 

BANGKOK, May 21 – A leader of the People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) has been arrested at Suvarnabhumi International Airport on today (May 21st) as he returned to Thailand from a stay in the United States. 

BANGKOK, 21 May 2014  – The Erawan Emergency Center made known that over 40 medical teams are on stand-by following the imposition of martial law.

The center said despite the announcement, both anti- and pro-government groups continue to stay put on Ratcha Damnoen Road and Utthayan Road. Medical personnel are set to continue treating the sick and injured at protest sites.

Forty medical teams consisting of professionals from over 48 hospitals and 8 medical foundations have been assigned to monitor the situation. Mobile medical and emergency units have also prepared to dispatch members to demonstration strongholds and other nearby areas.

Since political protests began, a total of 25 people have been killed and 782 others injured. As of now, eight people still remain in hospitals awaiting treatment.

BANGKOK, 21 May 2014 – The Peace and Order Maintaining Command (POMC) has issued its 12th announcement, this time concerning the actions of authorities to secure life and property efficiently and in accordance with martial law, Section 6 B.E. 2457. 

BANGKOK, 21 May 2014 – The Peace and Order Maintaining Command (POMC) has issued an 8th announcement requesting cooperation from social media to spread news of all events straightforwardly and without bias. To do otherwise might cause misunderstandings and enlarge the political conflict.

According to Martial Law section 11, B.E. 2457, entrepreneurs or participants in social networks are prohibited from broadcasting to incite, or provoke violence, including resistance to the POMC's performance of duties. Commentators who violate this regulation will be suspended and prosecuted without further notice.

BANGKOK, 21 May 2014  – The Ministry of Public Health has continued giving free influenza vaccines for another 3 months. 

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