Guwahati: In the midst of the global economic recession brought on by the rampant spread of the coronavirus, the government of Thailand has taken a unique decision in an attempt to revive its ailing tourism sector, one of the country's biggest sources of revenue.
Thailand has announced that tourists from foreign countries will have to stay within the island-country for a longer duration starting from October. The announcement was recently made by a government official as the government wants to give a boost to the tourism sector, which is the main source of revenue for the country.
Tourism Authority of Thailand Governor Yuthasak Supasorn has said that tourists visiting Thailand will now have to stay for in the country for a minimum period of 30 days. This will be inclusive of a 14-day quarantine period close to their hotel. After the quarantine period is over, the tourists can explore the sights and sounds of Thailand to their heart's content.
The decision has been taken after authorities suspended plans to make travel bubbles with partner nations as the COVID-19 cases in Asia increased.
Minister of Tourism and Sports Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn said that starting from October 1, foreign tourists will undergo two Coronavirus tests during quarantine before they are allowed to soak in the sights and sounds of Phuket.
After that, tourists will be tested for the coronavirus yet again and stay within the province for one more week and, then after, travel across the rest of Thailand.
This decision has been taken amid an improvement in the COVID-19 situation in Thailand. The country has managed to control Coronavirus quite effectively. In about three months, there is no confirmed case of a local COVID-19 transmission, although the global numbers continue to soar at an unprecedented rate.
It needs mention here that the Thai economy has been badly hit by the coronavirus pandemic as the tourism sector has taken a huge nosedive amid the crisis. Thailand's economy saw its biggest annual contraction in 22 years and a record quarterly fall in the April-June period, as the coronavirus pandemic and restriction measures hit tourism, exports and domestic activity.
Thailand's economy, which is heavily reliant on tourism and exports, shrank 12.2 percent in the second quarter from a year earlier, the worst contraction since the Asian financial crisis in 1998, data from the state planning agency showed.