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28th August

  Tourists Only...

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Thailand bans visa runs but at least gives tourists a one off chance to extend their stay by 30 days
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thai entry stamp The Immigration Bureau has approved a new regulation that allows tourists to extend their stay in the kingdom by a further 30 days, effective from Aug 29.

That will mean holidaymakers from 49 countries who enter Thailand under a 30-day visa exemption can extend their stay for a further 30 days by obtaining a 30 day extension from their local immigration office. Of course this concession is limited to a single extension.

The measure will appeal to foreign travellers who want to prolong their stay in Thailand and visit other Southeast Asian countries, Pol Col Vorarat said. The extension will cost 1,900 baht.

The bureau, however, tightened up visa extension regulations for foreigners who enroll to study Thai in private language schools outside of the official school system, as well as those working in a public charity/non-profit organisation or a foreign chamber of commerce. Those affected will be granted visa extensions of 90 days but for no more than one year.

 

26th August

  Tea Total Dictatorship...

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Thailand's military dictators demand midnight closing and ban all drinks promotions including Happy Hours
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singha beer Thailand's military junta has warned that it intends to enforce harsh measures regulating the advertising and promotion of alcohol, in a move that will affect thousands of businesses throughout the country.

Under the newly enforced rules all alcohol products must carry health warnings, sales are banned to anyone under the age of 20, and initiatives promoting alcohol -- such as happy hours, free ice and mixers, and the use of beer girls -- are banned.

No drinking is allowed after midnight in bars or restaurants, even though sales have ended; no alcohol logos are allowed on glasses, ashtrays and other paraphernalia; and bars will not be allowed to display posters or bottles -- even old ones -- featuring such logos.

Bar staff cannot wear T-shirts with alcohol logos, and it is illegal to promote events such as wine and beer tastings. Alcohol logos - or even images accepted as representative of brands, such as a deer head for Benmore or red stars for Heineken - are not allowed to be displayed in sponsorship or any kind of advertising or promotion.

Promoting alcohol through word of mouth is also illegal, so if a waiter is asked to recommend a particular brand of beer he would be breaking the law if he responds. All printed photographs of glasses or bottles in the media must have visible brands and logos blurred.

Fines range between 2,500 for non-cooperation with inspectors and 500,000 baht if beverage companies promote and advertise their alcohol illegally. There are also punishments of up to six months in jail for various offences.

Update: Not yet national

28th August 2014.

The new doesn't seem to have made any national newspapers so maybe this is an action local to Chiang Mai.

 

23rd August

  Maybe a Little Hasty...

Thailand seems to be having second thoughts about banning visa runs
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thai entry stamp The Thai Immigration Bureau has been told to be flexible with visa runners , junta chief General Prayuth Chan-ocha has said. In his weekly televised address yesterday, Prayuth said those going on visa runs can register with the bureau, which will then find a way to resolve the problem.

Prayuth admitted that this crackdown had considerably affected certain groups:

This is a problem that needs to be resolved, as it can lead to a shortage of English teachers and tour guides.

 

6th August

  Fast Track...

Pattaya will be put on the high speed train map
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new train lines Thailand military government has approved two high-speed train projects. The two routes approved are intended to serve as a transport link between Thailand and southern China.

Proposals for a high-speed train from Rayong to Nong Khai - and on to China - were first made in October, 2013.

Permanent secretary for transport Soithip Traisuth, however, said the maximum speed of the trains to be operated on the new routes, between Nong Khai and Map Ta Phut and between Chaing Khong and Ban Phachi, would have to be reduced to 160 kilometres per hour from the 200 km/ph previously stated.

The construction of the two routes will begin next year and should be completed by 2021.

 

2nd August

  Hot News: Thailand is good for you...

Researchers find that spicy food protects against bowel cancer
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chilli A chemical compound found in spicy curries could help reduce the risk of developing bowel cancer, a study has found.

Researchers gave capsaicin, which gives chilli peppers their heat, to mice genetically prone to developing multiple tumours in their gastrointestinal tract.

The capsaicin triggered a pain receptor in the cells lining their intestines, setting off a reaction that reduced the risk of growing colorectal tumours. Researchers gave capsaicin, which gives chilli peppers their heat, to mice genetically prone to developing multiple tumours in their gastrointestinal tract

Scientists found that the treatment extended the lifespan of the mice by more than 30%. And it was even more effective when combined with celecoxib, an anti-inflammatory drug already approved for treating some forms of arthritis.

Bowel cancer is the third most common type of cancer in the UK, with doctors diagnosing an average of 41,000 new cases of the disease every year.



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