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September 23, 2019

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Thai visa waiver extended

Thailand will extend until April next year a measure that waives fees for visas on arrival issued to tourists from 18 countries, as it looks to stimulate growth in tourism to spur a slowing economy.

The waivers are part of a US$10-billion stimulus package to boost growth, including a debt moratorium for farmers, loans for smaller businesses, and more money for low-income earners.

“The Cabinet approved the extension of fee waivers until April 2020,” Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha said, adding that the scheme would cover Chinese Lunar New Year and the Thai new year, Songkran.

Foreign tourist receipts make up about 12 percent of Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy, but arrivals increased just 0.89 percent in June, with visitors from China, the biggest source, declining 7.1 percent from a year earlier.

The waived fee is 2,000 baht (US$65).


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