Thai-Lao border markets active after coup

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NAKHON PHANOM, May 26 — Markets at Thai-Lao border checkpoints in this Thai province have been very active for several days, as Laotians have been flocking across the border to stock up on goods from the Thai side after the Thai army carried out a coup d’etat last Thursday.

Since the Thai army implemented martial law countrywide, the atmosphere at the Thai-Laohire border checkpoints in Ta Uten and That Phanom districts of Nakhon Phanom province remained calm and peaceful.

The provincial economy has also remained strong, and Lao merchants still crossed the borders to sell their produce and local food every Mondays and Thursdays as usual.

Meanwhile, purchases of Thai products by the Laotians continued throughout the week, bringing in millions of baht in income for the province.

Some reports said that after Thai Army chief Gen Prayuth Chan O-cha declared martial law, the numbers of  Lao entrepreneurs crossing into Thailand to purchase goods, have more than doubled. 

More Lao people are stocking up on Thai products in fear that the situation in Thailand might become unstable later, prompting borders closures.

In the meantime, the border crossing between the the third Thai-Lao Friendship bridge at Nakhon Phanom-Khammoune is operating normally, with tourists and residents from both sides, and cross border deliveries permitted as usual, though under stricter surveillance by the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO).