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50,000 foreigners to start arriving next week

The passenger terminal of Don Mueang airport in Bangkok is virtually empty on Tuesday. The government plans to welcome several categories of visitors next month. (Photo: Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)

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The first group of foreigners to be allowed to enter Thailand will be business representatives, skilled workers, experts, people with Thai families, teachers, students and patients who agree to quarantine, according to the government.

Taweesilp Visanuyothin, spokesman of the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA), on Wednesday explained the government's plan to allow foreign nationals back into the country. 

He said most will be required to accept 14-day quarantine after their arrival.

The spokesman said about 50,000 foreigners are likely to visit the country under the new rules.

They include about 30,000 people expected to arrive for medical and wellness tourism.

Others include about 15,400 skilled workers/experts; 2,000 teachers, educational personnel and students; 2,000 foreigners with Thai families or with residences in Thailand; and 700 business people/investors. Members of this group have already registered for visits and agreed to quarantine.

They would be tested for Covid-19 both before and on arrival, have health insurance and be monitored by medical personnel.

A further group consists of tourists and travellers who would arrive under the travel bubble scheme, Dr Taweesilp said. Details for this group had yet to be finalised.

Foreign businesspeople/investors who accepted quarantine could arrive immediately. Skilled workers/experts, people with Thai families and residences in Thailand, educational personnel, students, businesspeople/investors with short visits and guests of the government would be allowed in on July 1, he said.

Those who would arrive for medical and wellness tourism could also arrive on July 1.

Tourists who would arrive under the travel bubble scheme could be allowed in on Aug 1 on condition they undergo "Villa Quarantine", meaning they stay in their accomodation and do not travel. 

The draft measures would be submitted to the CCSA for consideration next Monday, Dr Taweesilp said.

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