The Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration, or CCSA, Thailand’s Covid-19 management center, is likely to make final decisions on the so-called “Deep Red” zones for Bangkok, Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Samut Prakan, Chiang Mai, and Chonburi, along with possibly a few others as early as today, April 29th, 2021.
Thailand divides its dozens of provinces into color-coded zones which help determine restrictions and measures used to help prevent the potential spread of Covid-19. As a recent round of infections in the country has spread over the past several weeks the CCSA is discussing changing the current system, which classifies provinces from green to red. Currently, eighteen provinces are “Red” with higher restrictions and the remaining provinces in the country are orange. Some measures, like the closure of entertainment venues, have taken place countrywide.
Additionally, provincial governors have the ability to make their own restrictions and strengthen the rules the CCSA has set, with some provinces banning the sales of alcohol, requiring Covid-19 tests or quarantine to enter, closing a variety of other businesses like gyms, cinemas, tattoo shops, massage shops, etc. Governors cannot, however, loosen restrictions that are set at the national level by the CCSA.
The National Security Council met with the CCSA yesterday and discussed the deep-red zone proposal, which is designed to strengthen the rules even further in the provinces which have the highest number of Covid-19 cases. The Thai government dislikes using the word “lockdown” for various reasons, although the measures being discussed would likely look closer to a total shutdown than what is currently in place.
It’s important to note, however, that no final measures have been set and the overall idea is a proposal still, although the CCSA may make announcements as early as today. A four-day holiday weekend is set for this weekend due to labor and Coronation day, but the government is encouraging people not to travel. It is possible the new measures are announced in advance of the weekend to discourage travel even further.
TPN will monitor the situation and inform our readers as soon as we hear more.