Thailand Mulls Waiving Quarantine Rule for Vaccinated Tourists

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Photo: Sirachai Arunrugstichai / Getty images

Thailand may scrap mandatory quarantine for foreign visitors vaccinated against Covid-19 as it may help the nation revive its tourism industry, according to Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-Ocha.

Foreigners visiting Thailand may be allowed to skip the two-week isolation if they furnish vaccination certificates but authorities will continue to track them, Prayuth said after a cabinet meeting in Bangkok Tuesday. The government will carefully consider all aspects of such a move before implementing them, the prime minister said.

The Southeast Asian nation has already cleared vaccines made by Sinovac Biotech Ltd. and AstraZeneca Plc for emergency local use and ordered a total of 63 million doses from the two producers. The country is set to receive the first batch of 2 million doses of Sinovac vaccine on Wednesday that will allow it start a national inoculation program as early as next week.

Thailand will eventually allow registration and imports of several brands of Covid-19 vaccines as long as they meet local rules, and private hospitals will be permitted to administer the shots, Prayuth said. The government will control the distribution of vaccines only in the early stages, he said.

“Many companies have shown interest to register but their documents are not completed yet,” Prayuth said. “It is good that we will have more vaccines than the 65 million doses planned by the government now.”

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