In response to a lower Omicron infection rate, the health minister said that the government would lower the Covid-19 alert level and consider easing more restrictions to boost the economy.
There is a possibility of establishing more “sandbox” zones for tourists, who can save time on quarantine by staying in designated areas for seven days and undergoing two Covid-19 tests.
Thailand’s Minister of Public Health Anutin Charnvirakul told the Bangkok Post that new sandbox areas could include Chiang Mai, Chonburi, Khon Kaen, and Samut Prakan provinces.
Currently, only Phuket, Phang Nga, Krabi, and Koh Samui are part of the sandbox scheme. The sandbox scheme has been a calibrated move by the government to repair Thailand’s tourism industry.
Furthermore, Mr Anutin said that the ‘Test and Go’ scheme, which allows tourists who pass a Covid test on arrival free movement, might be revived in February.
According to the Health Minister, the Covid-19 alert level will be decreased to 3, from 4, on the government’s five-level system, due to a decline in the number of Coronavirus-related deaths and severe illnesses from the Omicron variant of covid-19.
A proposal to adjust the colour-coded control zones will be made by the Public Health Ministry on Thursday to the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA). The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) will be also responsible for making adjustments in the capital.
However, he said, nightclubs, pubs, and bars will remain closed for the time being due to the highly contagious Omicron variant of Covid-19.
It is estimated that there have been 2.3 million cases of Covid-19 in Thailand and almost 22,000 deaths over 2 years.