Here is a look at the top NATIONAL stories, chosen by our team, from last week, September 14th to 20th, with some commentary. They are not in any particular level of importance but are listed in order of date of publication.
1. Thailand’s Bankruptcy Court approves Thai Airways rehabilitation plan today, ticket refund policy included
After months of consideration of the petition for business rehabilitation of Thai Airways International Public Company Limited, Thailand’s Bankruptcy Court has officially given a green light to the rehabilitation plan which includes debt restructuring, improving flight routes and the overall aircraft fleet, improving strategies of business companies relating to the airline, improving the company’s commerce strategy and earning potential, and reducing the organizational structure. A new convenient, as described by the company, ticket refund policy is also implemented for all unused ticket holders. They do not need to file a debt settlement but will receive the refunds systematically, according to the plan.
2. More Thai public holidays likely to be scheduled this November to boost the national economy
A four-day weekend substitution for the previously postponed Songkran holiday in early September had caused many tourist cities and places to be bustling again, including Pattaya. Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-O’Cha, therefore, floated the idea of having another long weekend to boost domestic tourism and the economy, which is now being considered by a government committee. Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam later told the press that the weekend will potentially be a four-day holiday, including Saturday and Sunday, and is likely to be added in early November.
3. Thai government approves, in principle, to welcome long-stay foreign tourists under a ‘Special Tourist Visa’ scheme, starting this October
This topic has drawn the attention of potential long-stay international tourists who would like to return to Thailand as soon as the approval was announced. Only foreigners who have passed government requirements and actions for the control of the spread of Covid-19 would be allowed to apply for the Special Tourist Visas, which will cost 2,000 baht and will last for 90 days and can be extended up to two times with a cumulative total of 270 days. This implementation is planned to be launched by this October. Meanwhile, further initial details on the announcement can be found in the article below.
4. Thailand added to UK’s ‘quarantine-free’ travel corridor list, effective Saturday
Congratulations Thailand for being put on England’s ‘travel corridor’ exemption list which allows Thai tourists and visitors coming from Thailand to travel to the country without 14 days of self-isolating. Countries, territories, and regions in the ‘travel corridor’ are added according to their number of cases and deaths, testing capacity, and how much the virus has spread in the community. The list has given a positive aspect to Thailand since its potential to curb the national spread of Covid-19 has been internationally recognized. This does not, however, mean the move is reciprocal.
5. Thailand’s pro-democracy overnight protest in Bangkok pushes for more pressure on democratic reform measures
The most talked-about issue in Thailand could not have been anything else but the massive overnight gathering at Sanam Luang in Bangkok this past weekend. The spirited but peaceful rally was energetically run by a huge crowd of pro-democracy attendees traveling from all over the country, including former ‘red-shirt’ protestors and former political leaders. It was claimed to be the biggest anti-government demonstration yet in Bangkok after Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-O’Cha took power originally in a 2014 coup. The protest leaders are also planning another political movement on Thursday to put pressure on members of Parliament to consider drafting a new constitution in front of the Government House.
That is all for this week, thank you as always for reading the Pattaya News!