Cabinet okays reopening to tourists, yacht crews

Cabinet okays reopening to tourists, yacht crews

The cabinet on Wednesday approved in principle a guideline to reopen the country for foreign tourists and crews of foreign yachts under a special tourist visa (STV) scheme, which was recently approved by the cabinet to restart the pandemic-battered tourism industry.

According to deputy government spokeswoman Traisulee Traisoranakul, the new guideline will become effective within 30 days after an announcement in the Royal Gazette.

It will come into force until Sept 30, next year.

Ms Traisulee said foreign tourists and crew members of foreign yachts who entered Thailand's territorial waters before the declaration of the state emergency decree on March 25 are allowed to apply for the STV scheme at immigration checkpoints within 30 days after the announcement in the Royal Gazette.

They will be allowed to stay in the Kingdom for 90 days, with 2,000 baht worth of visa fees.

The extension will be allowed two times at 90 days each.

Foreign tourists and crew members of foreign yachts are required to stay in quarantine for 14 days on their yachts before travelling.

They are also required to come up with a health insurance policy that covers Covid-19 treatment, with a minimum coverage of US$100,000 throughout the duration of their stay in Thailand.

In a separate development, the cabinet approved four projects worth 111 million baht under the state's 400-billion-baht spending plan slated for social and economic rehabilitation.

Four projects will be implemented between October 2020 and September 2021.

The first project worth 22 million baht belongs to Prince of Songkla University to upgrade palm industry to become integrated oleo-chemical which will increase the value of palm and can be used as raw material in various industries such as cosmetics, food and pharmacy.

The second project worth 66.68 million baht is owned by the Tourism and Sports Ministry. The ministry aims to organise training for 12,000 staff in the tourism and service industry in order to upgrade the capability of human resources in the industry.

The third project worth 19.12 million baht goes to upgrade sand dunes in Pathiu district in Chumphon to become an ecotourism spot, while the fourth project worth 4 million baht owned by the Tourism and Sports Ministry aims to upgrade the quality of services among tourism entrepreneurs in Phetchaburi, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Chumphon and Ranong.

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