Emergency Decree to be extended for another two months?

23 May 2021

Thailand's Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration proposes that the countrywide Emergency Decree be extended for another two months. The CCSA and the Public Health Ministry said today that bringing the new Covid wave under control could take until the end of July. The most recent State of the Emergency declaration was made in March 2020, and it was set to terminate by the end of May because the government can only designate the status for three months at a time.

Now that Thailand's third wave of infections has proven to be the most devastating, efforts to halt the virus's spread are taking longer, with over 94,000 cases reported since early April.

Those who believe PM Prayut Chan-o-cha could exploit the extensive powers granted to him by the Emergency Decree of 2005 to further consolidate authoritarian control over the country have criticized it. The ordinance was enacted last year and has since been extended.

Meanwhile, from the first week of June, foreigners living in Thailand will be able to enrol for the Covid-19 vaccine as part of the country's mass immunization drive. They can register for vaccines on-site at hospitals, but Natapanu Nopakun, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, recommends that ex-pats register for vaccines at a facility that has their medical records on file. When registering for a vaccine, ex-pats will need to bring their passport, work permit, or social security number.

When the mass vaccination campaign begins, Thai citizens will have three options for registering for the Covid-19 vaccine. Thai nationals wanting the Covid-19 vaccination will be able to register through the Mor Prom platform, on-site registration, and through particular target groups receiving vaccination supplies, according to the PM. In addition, after Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha halted the initiative, spokesman Anucha Burapachaisri says there will be no "walk-in" immunization centres.