Prawit opposes visa waiver for Chinese, Indian visitors

Prawit opposes visa waiver for Chinese, Indian visitors

Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon arrives at Government House in Bangkok on Monday. (Photo by Wassana Nanuam)
Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon arrives at Government House in Bangkok on Monday. (Photo by Wassana Nanuam)

Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwaon supports the Foreign Ministry's objection to economic ministers' proposal for a visa waiver for Chinese and Indian tourists.

“I disagree. The Foreign Ministry objects to it because China has a huge population of 1.2 billion and India 1.2 billion. I disagree with easy access,” Gen Prawit said at Government House on Monday.

Gen Prawit’s stance responded to the economic ministers’ decision last Friday to propose the visa waiver as a measure to stimulate the economy. The Tourism and Sports Ministry, under the supervision of the Bhumjaithai Party, proposed it but the Foreign Ministry opposed it over security concerns.

Under the visa waiver proposal, Chinese and Indian visitors would be allowed to stay in the country for up to 30 days. The Tourism and Sports Ministry planned the measure to be effective for one year from Nov 1 to Oct 31 next year.

The Foreign Ministry questioned if Thailand was ready to cope with a potentially massive influx of tourists from China and India. It also warned that many visitors might take the opportunity to escape from hardships, such as natural disasters in their countries, in order to settle in Thailand.


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