Thailand drops requirement for visitors to show proof of Covid-19 vaccination
BANGKOK - Thailand has rescinded a policy announced at the weekend requiring visitors to show proof of Covid-19 vaccination, its health minister said on Monday.
Mr Anutin Charnvirakul told reporters proof of vaccination was not needed as there was sufficient immunisation globally, while those not vaccinated would be granted entry without restriction. It replaced new rules announced on Saturday by the aviation regulator, ahead of China reopening its borders.
Earlier, the Thai government said it is reviewing its abruptly issued rule that foreign arrivals must show proof of two Covid-19 jabs, after Phuket tourism operators complained it had caused many tourists to cancel bookings to the island.
Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn said on Monday that he had asked Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul to adjust the two-jab rule for foreign arrivals.
Mr Phiphat intervened after the Phuket Tourist Association submitted a letter to the government complaining the new rule threatened tourism recovery amid the return of Chinese visitors.
The Phuket Tourist Association said it had received negative feedback from foreign tour operators, who expressed consternation over the abrupt change to the arrival rules.
In Germany, tour companies said the jab requirement had created a problem and greatly reduced confidence in Thai tourism, with more than 1,000 hotel room reservations cancelled, Bangkok Post reported.
The rule, which came into effect at 1am on Monday, was implemented amid concern over soaring Covid-19 infections in China. - REUTERS, THE NATION/ASIA NEWS NETWORK
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