The government plans to establish a daily monitoring centre and devise contingency plans to address the impact of the El Niño weather phenomenon.
Speaking on Friday after chairing a meeting of the committee tasked with monitoring weather phenomena, Deputy Prime Minister Phumtham Wechayachai said the government is also considering reallocating funds from large investment projects that have not yielded short-term results to urgently address the drought crisis.
"Both El Niño and La Niña are expected to persist for up to three years, causing severe impacts to the population and all industry sectors," said Mr Phumtham.
"The meeting decided to establish a task force to monitor the situation daily, with the director-general of the Meteorological Department as its head and the Commerce Ministry serving as the coordinating agency."
In addition, a disaster warning system is planned to keep the public informed, with contingency plans developed to mitigate the impact, he said.
The government wants to create a recovery plan to assist and provide relief to affected regions and sectors, said Mr Phumtham.
He said the Meteorological Department will monitor the situation daily and determine how to issue timely disaster warnings to the public.
The government may consider suspending large projects that have not yet indicated results to reallocate their budgets for drought relief measures, such as expediting the construction of small water sources and water intake areas, said Mr Phumtham.
Four subcommittees are planned, with an academic panel to monitor and assess the weather phenomena, while another subcommittee evaluates the short-term, medium-term and long-term impacts of El Niño and La Niña, along with mitigation measures.
He said a public relations and notification subcommittee will be tasked with using efficient technology and communication systems to disseminate information about these climate phenomena, while a subcommittee conducting site visits and confirming specific impacts in various areas will work in collaboration with local authorities and the Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Department to propose urgent measures for protecting the people's assets and the economy.