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ResourcesVisa & Immigration LawThailand Immigration LawThe Thai Emergency Decree in Response to COVID: One Year On

The Thai Emergency Decree in Response to COVID: One Year On

Transcripts of the above video:

This video is kind of an opinion piece. It is just a roundup if you will of the last year. We have now passed March 26, 2021 which marked the one year anniversary of the implementation of the Emergency Decree which has resulted in a lot of these current restrictions that we are currently dealing with. Where are we at one year on?  Well we are a little wiser, at least I am. Maybe I am a little more cynical, a little more jaded. I certainly was hoping this would end by last summer and clearly that hasn't happened. 

Where are we with respect to Immigration? Well in a lot of ways we are not that different than we were back in the fourth quarter of 2020. I will say we are in a decidedly different position than we were at the beginning of last summer where it was effectively impossible for a foreign national to get into Thailand except for a Work Permit holder but across the board the situation has been fluid but to some degree it is just generally more restricted; let's just leave it at that. 

Where do we see things going in the future? Hopefully they are going to ease up. As we talked about in other videos, it looks like we are not really going to see fundamental just total rescission of all of this until at the earliest 2022 which I find very interesting in an American context. I watch a lot of American News. The notion of two weeks to flatten the curve has become something of a joke. For good or ill. I am not really getting into the validity of this. The expectations we had a year ago, now I don't know if you would call them naïve but they certainly were not in line with how the reality played out. How things are processing moving forward at least in an Immigration context with respect to both the US and Thailand in many ways it has gotten more restrictive over time especially with respect to the United States. Back under the old Administration, and again this isn't political commentary, this is just sort of my observation from afar, there weren't a lot of restrictions, especially on  Americans returning to the US whereas now there are some and it looks like we are dealing with all this discussion of so called "vaccine passports", a year on. As we have discussed on this channel before, this was all viewed as hysteria on the part of people reacting to the Government response. Now it seems to be viewed as pretty standard, almost as if it is a foregone conclusion depending on what parts of the press you read. 

So the reason for this video is a lot has changed. The Emergency Decree came into effect. It put a lot of restrictions on. It gave a lot of amnesties out for Immigration here in Thailand. That has all largely gone away. So here we sit and we are going into a period where presumably we are going to start seeing aspects of these quarantines being dropped and things returning to some semblance of normality but all of that again remains to be seen. 

We will keep you updated over the course of the forth coming year but it has been a long strange trip. I will say I never thought back in March of last year that I would be standing here right now talking about this a year on that we are still dealing with fundamentally the same regime with respect to Immigration at least in Thailand and the United states. Well at least in Thailand. The United States has shifted a little bit but with respect to Thailand, I never would have thought we would be dealing with this a year on and especially when it has wrought real despair, real havoc to the Thai Tourism Industry. I figured long ago some of this would have gone away but again here we are and it looks like yes in some form this is going to evolve for the better but at least for the foreseeable future we are still going to be dealing with substantial restrictions on coming into Thailand and going into the United States.