While Thailand was during the past year, one of the best-performing countries in combating the Corona virus, after imposing a comprehensive closure, as it celebrated last September, with 100 consecutive days of no transmitted infection, the country returned to witnessing a significant increase in the number of infections over the past months. .
With the economy increasingly affected by the ongoing lockdowns, the government has now decided to abandon the idea of a contagion-free country and a new message: learning to live with the virus for the long term, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha pledged this week to fully reopen the country in the next 120 days, or by mid-October, allowing most restrictions on business and tourism to be lifted.
step is necessary
Doing so would mean accepting higher infection rates, he said, but the move was necessary to alleviate the immense suffering of those struggling to make a living.
Corona in Thailand (Reuters)
And he added in a televised speech on Wednesday, that he knows that this decision carries some risks because when the country is opened, there will be an increase in injuries, no matter how good the precautions are, but I think when you take into account the economic needs of the people.
It is worth noting that Thailand has been paying a heavy price for its early success in fighting the epidemic, and tourism, which accounts for about 15% of GDP, has come to a near standstill amid severe travel restrictions.
Most contagious alpha
Official figures show the number of foreign tourists dropping from 39.9 million in 2019 to 6.7 million in 2020. Commercial closures and temporary factory closures have left many of the poorest countries without income.
In addition, a study conducted by the Thai health authorities found that the most contagious alpha strain of the virus, which was first discovered in the United Kingdom, was prevalent among the recent cases.