Thailand’s Prime Minister has ordered related agencies to be on high alert for the detection of any COVID-19 cases related to the new Omicron variant of concern.
Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha has ordered health, security, and tourism authorities to be on high alert for any potential Omicron cases among international arrivals. First reported in Africa, this new variant of concern was named after the Greek alphabet Omicron and is now causing concerns across the globe.
Several countries have already reported local cases of the Omicron variant, as well as imposing travel bans on some African countries. Effective from 1 December, travelers from 8 African countries will be barred from traveling to Thailand.
Meanwhile, the government is satisfied with the air border reopening, with around 100,000 travelers arriving in Thailand since 1 November, including those serving quarantine at government-certified hotels.
So far, some 300,000 people have already applied for Thailand Pass, a digital certificate for health and immunization record required for entry.
The government now anticipates that tourism revenue next year will reach 1.5 trillion baht, which is only half of what the industry generated in 2019, while the revenue in 2023 is expected to reach 80% of the 2019 amount, before reaching 3 trillion baht in 2024, which is the same amount the tourism industry generated in 2019.
The Prime Minister has on this occasion encouraged the general public to get their full doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, while continuing to observe the Universal Protection measure. Businesses are encouraged to strictly adhere to the COVID Free Setting guideline to help prevent new outbreaks. (NNT)