As the COVID-19 pandemic unfolds, a city in the Indonesian province of Banten has estimated that the total number of workers laid off may reach 23,000 in July.

In the meantime, a senior official in Thailand shared that the nation is likely to delay its 'travel bubble' plans as fresh outbreaks of COVID-19 emerge in countries that had managed to contain the virus earlier. While Thailand's borders remain closed to tourism, these 11 types of travellers can still plan a trip there as long as they comply with the guidelines.

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Total number of layoffs in Tangerang may reach 23,000 in July 

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused almost 15,000 workers to be laid off in Tangerang, Banten, said Tangerang Regent Ahmed Zaki Iskandar, Jakarta Post reported.

According to Ahmed, 9,386 workers had been furloughed as a result of 13 companies declaring bankruptcy.

“Not to mention a big company with 8,000 employees that will shut down this July,” he said in a statement on Tuesday.

He added that his administration would continue to keep track of employees who have been laid off during the pandemic, and estimated that the total number of layoffs may reach 23,000 in July.

Across Indonesia, 1.79mn workers were laid off or furloughed amid the COVID-19 pandemic as of 27 May 2020. 

If the pandemic situation does not improve, the number of layoffs is likely to keep increasing.

To prevent the number of layoffs from increasing drastically, Tangerang Manpower Agency Head Jurnaji said that his agency had formed a monitoring team to assess the effect of COVID-19. This team will be tasked with facilitating counseling sessions with corporations, employees and unions.

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Thailand likely to delay 'travel bubble' plans as countries see fresh outbreaks

As countries that had managed to contain COVID-19 see fresh outbreaks, Thailand is likely to delay its plans for 'travel bubbles', a senior Thai official told Reuters.

Earlier this month, Thailand partially lifted a three-month ban on foreign visitors. The nation had also been planning to further boost tourism, a key contributor to its economy, by creating travel bubbles later in the year with countries like Australia, New Zealand and Hong Kong that had managed to contain the virus.

Initially, the government had planned to begin the travel bubbles in September. However, fresh outbreaks are creating uncertainty as to when this plan can be carried out. 

Tourism Authority of Thailand Governor Yuthasak Supasorn said: "The travel bubble that was going to begin in the fourth quarter could be delayed.”

He added that the country has adjusted its forecast for foreign arrivals this year to 8.2mn from earlier figures of 10-12mn.

On Wednesday, Thailand marked 44 days without a local transmission. In total, the country has reported 3,197 virus infections, with Thai nationals returning from overseas accounting for new cases.

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Guidelines for 11 types of travellers that can plan a trip to Thailand

While Thailand's borders remain closed to tourism, these 11 types of travellers can still plan a trip there as long as they comply with the guidelines.

According to the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand (CAAT), 11 types of travellers are still able to enter Thailand during the current time as the nation continues its unprecedented effort to maintain zero new local cases of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection in the country.

The eligible travellers as listed below must seek in advance a ‘Certificate of Entry’ from their local Thai embassies or consulates abroad as required under the order of the Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA).

  1. Thai nationals.
  2. Persons with exemption or persons being considered, permitted, or invited by the Prime Minister, or the head of responsible persons accountable for resolving state of emergency issues to enter the Kingdom, pertaining to necessity. Such consideration, permission or invitation may be subject to specific conditions and time limits.
  3. Persons on diplomatic or consular missions or under international organisations, or representatives of foreign governments performing their duties in the Kingdom, or persons of other international agencies as permitted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs pertaining to necessity, including their spouse, parents, or children.
  4. Carriers of necessary goods, subject to immediate return after completion.
  5. Crew members who are required to travel into the Kingdom on a mission and have a specified date and time for return.
  6. Non-Thai nationals who are a spouse, parents, or children of a Thai national.
  7. Non-Thai nationals who hold a valid certificate of permanent residency in the Kingdom, or permission to take up residence in the Kingdom.
  8. Non-Thai nationals who have a work permit or have been granted permission from government agencies to work in the Kingdom, including their spouse or children.
  9. Non-Thai nationals who are students of educational institutions approved by Thai authorities, including the parents or guardians of the students, except for students of non-formal educational institutions under the law on private schools and of other similar private educational institutions.
  10. Non-Thai nationals who are in need of medical treatment in Thailand, and their attendants. However, this shall not include medical treatment for COVID-19.
  11. Non-Thai nationals who are permitted to enter the Kingdom under a special arrangement with a foreign country.

Once a ‘Certificate of Entry’ is obtained, CAAT recommends all travellers to follow the below guidelines:

Predeparture

  • Check whether they are individuals as described in the 11 exempt types issued by the CAAT.
  • Prepare the necessary relevant documents as required for the different types of individuals.
  • Contact the nearest Thai embassy or consulate to submit the documents and follow the terms and conditions for the flight bookings to obtain the ‘Certificate of Entry’

On the date of departure

  • Show the following documents and items to the airline at the check-in counter:
    • Passport.
    • Certificate of Entry.
    • Health certificate clarifying no risk of COVID-19, using a RT-PCR laboratory technique, issued no more than 72 hours before travelling (required from passengers in Types 2, 3, and 6-11).
    • Health insurance policy showing a minimum coverage for COVID-19 of not less than US$100,000 (required from passengers in Types 5-11).
    • Surgical masks and alcohol-based hand sanitiser (per the approved amount).

Onboard the aircraft

  • Wear a surgical mask during the flight.
  • Follow the airline’s infection control guidance and restrictions.

Upon arrival to Thailand

  • For visitors staying no more than 14 days.
    • Undergo the COVID-19 testing using a RT-PCR laboratory technique at the airport.
    • Download the tracking mobile phone app for COVID-19 incidents.
  • For visitors staying longer than 14 days.
    • Undergo the COVID-19 screening (checking symptoms and body temperature).
    • Download the tracking mobile phone app for COVID-19 incidents.
    • Enter a 14-day local or state quarantine.

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