The declaration of state of emergency in Thailand on 25 March 2020

(Unofficial Translation)
Issued under Section 9 of the Emergency Decree on Public Administration
in Emergency Situations B.E. 2548 (2005)
(No. 1)


Pursuant to the Declaration of an Emergency Situation in all areas of the Kingdom of Thailand as from 26 March B.E. 2563 (2020),

In order to quickly remedy the emergency situation and prevent its escalation, by virtue of Section 9 of the Emergency Decree on Public Administration in Emergency Situations B.E. 2548 (2005), and Section 11 of the State Administration Act B.E. 2534 (1991), the Prime Minister hereby issues regulations and guidelines for government agencies under the criteria, conditions and timeframe as follows:

1. Prohibition of Entry into Risk Areas:People are prohibited from entering areas or places that are risk-prone to the infection of COVID-19 as specified in the Resolution of the Council of Ministers dated 17 March B.E. 2563 (2020) or Notifications or Orders issued by the Governor of Bangkok, Provincial Governors or communicable disease control officers under the Communicable Diseases Act B.E. 2558 (2015) prior to this Regulation coming into effect, and those to be further issued. In cases of exemption, disease prevention measures specified in Clause 11 shall be complied with.
The Notifications or Orders of the Governor of Bangkok, Provincial Governors or communicable disease control officers under paragraph one shall be deemed Orders under this Regulation.

2. Closure of Places that are Risk-Prone to the Transmission of the Disease: the Governor of Bangkok and all Provincial Governors shall consider and issue Orders by virtue of Section 35 (1) of the Communicable Diseases Act B.E. 2558 (2015) to temporarily close places with high numbers of people conducting activities together and at risk of spreading COVID-19, but at a minimum, shall order the closure of the following places:
 (1) boxing stadiums, sport stadiums, sport arenas, playgrounds, horse racetracks in all provinces throughout the Kingdom until notified otherwise;
 (2) pubs, places of entertainment, theatres, public places for performances or recreation, massage and traditional massage parlours, spa, fitness centres, entertainment spots, in accordance with the Place of Entertainment Act B.E. 2509 (1966), the Public Health Act B.E. 2535 (1992) and the Health Business Establishments Act B.E. 2559 (2016), within Bangkok and its vicinity, namely the Provinces of Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Nakhon Pathom, Samut Prakan, and Samut Sakhon, as from this date until notified otherwise;
 (3) any other places such as natural tourist attractions, museums, public libraries, religious sites, terminals or stations, markets, and department stores, may be considered for closure in whole or in part, and may specify conditions and timeframe as necessary and appropriate, with the approval of the Provincial or Bangkok Communicable Disease Committees as the case may be. Due regard shall be given to the risk of infection, the necessity of the people to obtain consumer goods and to travel, particularly during the initial period which requires their preparation or adjustment. In the case where an Order for the closure of a place has not yet been issued, the owner or caretaker must put in place screening measures and comply with the disease prevention measures specified in Clause 11 or establish a system compatible with those measures in so far as possible.

3. Closure of Point of Entry into the Kingdom: In using vehicles, whether aircrafts, vessels, motor vehicles or any other types of conveyance, or using transportation routes, whether by air, water, or land in order to enter into the Kingdom, the responsible officials shall close the Points of Entry, checkpoints, border crossings or border checkpoints for passengers or travellers entering into the Kingdom, in accordance with the laws on communicable disease and immigration, except for:
  (1) the case, or an exempted person, as prescribed or permitted pertaining to necessity by the Prime Minister or Chief Official responsible for remedying the emergency situation whereby conditions and timeframes may also be prescribed;
  (2) carrier of goods pertaining to necessity, who shall promptly depart after completing their mission;
  (3) vehicle operators and crew members of vehicles, who need to enter into the Kingdom pursuant to their mission, with a clear scheduled time of departure;
  (4) persons on diplomatic or consular missions or under International Organisations, or representatives of the government performing their duties in Thailand, or other persons or international agencies, including their families, that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs gives permission pertaining to necessity, shall apply for a certificate of entry into the Kingdom from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with relevant documents, and shall also comply with paragraph two;
  (5) non-Thai nationals who have work permit or have been granted permission from government agencies to work in the Kingdom, and shall also comply with paragraph two;
  (6) Thai nationals who shall apply for a certificate of entry into the Kingdom from the Royal Thai Embassy or the Royal Thai Consulate in their country of residence, or has a medical certificate, and shall comply with paragraph two; The Royal Thai Embassy and Royal Thai Consulate abroad shall provide information and facilitate Thai nationals returning to the Kingdom.
Persons granted an exemption or relaxation under (4) (5) or (6) must have a Fit to Fly Health Certificate which has been certified or issued no more than 72 hours before travelling; upon entry into the Kingdom, they must also comply with disease prevention measures prescribed by the Government under Clause 11, mutatis mutandis;
Immigration officers have the power, in accordance with immigration laws, to refuse entry into the Kingdom of non-Thai nationals who have been tested positive for COVID19 or are under suspicion of being infected or who refuse to undergo such test.

4. Prohibition of the Hoarding of Goods: It is prohibited for any person to hoard goods which are medicine, medical supplies, food, drinking water, or any other goods that are necessary for daily consumption and use, whether classified as controlled goods under the Price of Goods and Services Act B.E. 2542 (1999) or not. If such goods are classified as controlled goods, the quality and quantity of the production of goods, the control of their distribution price, and export from the Kingdom shall be governed by relevant laws. In order to ensure that the people have sufficient supplies necessary for their well-being and to prevent shortages or unnecessary distress, all relevant officials should strictly monitor and control such business operators in accordance with the Commodities Hoarding Survey Act B.E. 2497 (1954) and relevant laws.

5. Prohibition of the Assembly of Persons: It is prohibited to assemble, to carry out activities, or to gather at any place that is crowded, or to commit any act which may cause unrest in areas determined by the Chief Officer responsible for remedying the emergency situation on matters relating to security.

6. Presentation of News: It is prohibited to present or disseminate news through any media featuring content on the communicable disease Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) which is false or may instigate fear among the people, or to intentionally distort information which causes misunderstanding of the emergency situation to the extent of affecting the public order or good moral of the people. In such cases, officials shall issue warnings to cease such acts or order to correct such news, or in cases where there are severe impacts, shall instigate a proceeding in accordance with the Acts on Commission of Offences Relating to Computer Act B.E. 2550 (2007) or the Emergency Decree on Public Administration in Emergency Situations B.E. 2548 (2005).
The Centre for the Administration of the Situation due to the Outbreak of the Communicable Disease Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) shall be the focal point to organise press conferences and briefings at the Government House, in order to continually and regularly create awareness and understanding of the people. When necessary, the cooperation of the Television Pool of Thailand may also be requested.

7. Preparedness Measures
 (1) The Governor of Bangkok and all Provincial Governors shall be Supervisors for the public administration in the emergency situation in all aspects in their respective areas of responsibility. All problems shall be reported to the Ministry of Interior.
 (2) All government agencies shall prescribe, publicise and disseminate information on measures to assist or to alleviate the impacts upon the people from the implementation of the State’s measures in accordance with their duties and powers, by considering to spend their own budget first. In case where this is not possible, they shall submit a request for support from the Government.
 (3) Hospitals, medical centres, or any relevant agencies, in both the public and private sectors, that have duties and powers in the protection and treatment of patients, shall procure adequate supplies of medication, medical supplies, medical examination equipment, respiratory equipment, and other necessary equipment in accordance with the standards or recommendations of the Ministry of Public Health. This shall include the preparation of medical personnel from various sources and the preparation of quarantine and controlled monitoring facilities as well as beds to accommodate the possible increasing number of patients by requesting cooperation in the modification of various places, such as hotels, schools, universities, conference centres, Dharma practice centres, temple pavilions, and unused private sector buildings, and other government buildings and private sector places, into temporary hospitals.
 (4) In cases of self-quarantine for the observation of symptoms in accordance with Orders or recommendations of officials, or in cases of cross-provincial travellers, communicable disease control officers or agencies set up by Provincial Governors or volunteers who are assisting government agencies, may inspect the surveillance and the strictness of the self-quarantine and advise on the correct operating procedures. In such cases, cooperation on the inspection may be requested from local people.
In cases under (3), the government regulations shall be duly complied with. The Ministry of Public Health, Comptroller-General’s Department, and other relevant agencies may consider providing relevant exemption or relaxation in accordance with their existing powers.

8. Measures to be Followed by Certain Categories of People: the following groups of people that are at high risk of infection from COVID-19 shall stay in their dwelling places or within the area of their residences, in order to protect themselves from infection from the outside environment:
 (1) Elderly Persons over 70 years of age;
 (2) Persons who have underlying health conditions, namely chronic noncommunicable diseases, such as diabetes, hypertension, coronary artery and cerebrovascular diseases, respiratory system diseases, and persons who are immunocompromised caused by a natural history of disease and medication;
 (3) Young children under five years of age.
Persons within the aforementioned groups may be exempted from the measures under this Clause if they need to see a doctor or receive medical treatment; perform duties as doctors, nurses, or medical personnel; perform tasks or conduct transactions at the stock exchange and financial institutions, and ATM machines; perform tasks in public media, telecommunications, and the postal service; provide transportation services for passengers and delivery services for consumer goods; work in the procurement and sale of food; contact the police, public prosecutor or court with regard to their cases as necessary; carry out official tasks under various regulations, notifications, or orders; or persons who have any other necessities upon the permission of competent officials who have been appointed or assigned, except where there is a notification otherwise for an exemption or a prescription of different conditions or timeframe. Such persons must comply with the disease prevention measures specified in Clause 11.

9. Measures concerning the departure from the Kingdom: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Interior, and the Royal Thai Police shall be stringent in verifying or issuing visas, or permitting foreigners who do not have regular work or residence in the Kingdom but still remain in the Kingdom.
Non-Thai nationals or non-residents of the Kingdom who wish to depart from the Kingdom shall be facilitated in their travels, while complying with the disease prevention measures specified in Clause 11, mutatis mutandis.

10. Measures to maintain public order: In Bangkok, the Royal Thai Police shall have officers on duty or establish check points on roads, transportation routes, and terminals or stations, to prevent accidents, the commission of crimes, the assembly or gathering of persons in a manner that risks spreading the disease, or any action considered as taking advantage and further worsening the distress of the people, or malicious acts with the aim of spreading the disease. Immediate legal action shall be taken against such acts.
In other provinces except Bangkok, the Chief Official responsible for remedying the emergency situation on matters relating to security or the Royal Thai Police shall consider taking actions as appropriate. However, there shall at least be measures establishing check points or screening points to monitor cross-provincial travel for the orderly administration of travel, traffic, surveillance or observation of the symptoms of travellers and their behaviour that are risk-prone to the infection of the disease.
For the purposes of implementing this Clause, the persons responsible in accordance with paragraphs one and two, may request cooperation for joint operation from military officers, officers of the Internal Security Operations Command, or volunteers. Immediate legal action shall be taken against the acts indicated in paragraph one.

11. Disease Prevention Measures: There shall be disease prevention measures to be applied generally or in cases where there is a relaxation or exemption of the compliance of this Regulation, as follows:
 (1) The cleaning by wiping surfaces of relevant places before the organisation of activities and the disposal of waste on a daily basis;
 (2) Officials, entrepreneurs, guests, participants, employees and customers shall wear surgical masks or cloth masks;
 (3) Persons in (2) shall wash their hands with soap, alcohol, gel or disinfectant;
 (4) Persons in (2) shall keep a distance of at least one metre apart while sitting or standing to prevent physical contact or the spread of the disease through saliva droplets;
 (5) The limitation of the number of participants to prevent overcrowding or the reduction of the time spent on activities as necessary on the basis of avoidance of physical contact;
Officials may introduce additional measures utilising tracking applications via mobile telephones, and may use observation measures, or a minimum 14-day quarantine measure in accordance with laws concerning communicable diseases for particular categories of people or particular individuals as necessary.

12. Policy to keep places opened: The Government has a policy to keep the following places in normal operation for the convenience and well-being of the people to prevent shortages or unnecessary distress: hospitals, medical centres, medical clinics, pharmacies, restaurants which are not part of an entertainment spot or place of entertainment, take-away food stalls, residential and dining parts of hotels, small convenience stores, general stores, department stores only in the supermarkets, pharmacies, food sections and sections selling miscellaneous items essential for daily life, factories, securities businesses, financial institutions, banks, ATMs, markets and flea markets selling fresh food, dried food, cooked food, animal feed, medical supplies, and miscellaneous essential items, cooking gas and fuel shops, petrol stations, NGV/LPG gas stations, cargo and passenger terminals including goods and food online delivery service. The relevant persons must comply with the disease prevention measures specified in Clause 11.
Government offices, state enterprises, and other government agencies shall remain open during usual operating hours, unless a notification for temporary closure or suspension has previously been issued such as educational institutions. This is to facilitate the people and to protect their interests or to prevent them from violating laws which have deadlines to perform. However, facilitation shall be provided to working staff, such as arrange overlapping shifts for working hours and lunch breaks and working outside of the usual office. Additional facilitation shall be provided to the people, such as the holding of teleconferences, the provision of services through digital communication, the waiver of the requirement of physical presence, or exemption, extension, suspension or reduction of fees as prescribed under the provisions of the law.
Businesses, shops, and government offices that remain open shall set up measures to screen working staff and visitors or customers in accordance with the disease prevention measures specified in Clause 11.

13. Cross-provincial travel advice: During this period of time, people should refrain or delay non-essential cross-provincial travels, and should reside at or work from their habitual residences. If a person needs to make cross-provincial travel, they are required to undergo screening and comply with official measures for the purpose of tracking in order to receive medical check-up or be quarantined.

14. Advice on the organisation of other activities: The organisation of other activities and traditional social events, such as weddings, the worshiping of ancestors, meritmaking ceremonies, funerals, Songkran ceremonies or activities within the family, as well as activities or ceremonies organised by government agencies or in accordance with official schedules, can still proceed as appropriate. However, the disease prevention measures specified in Clause 11 must be complied with.

15. Penalties: Any person who violates or fails to comply with Clause 1, Clause 2, Clause 3, Clause 4, Clause 5, and Clause 6 of this Regulation shall be liable in accordance with Section 18 of the Emergency Decree on Public Administration in Emergency Situations B.E. 2548 (2005), and may also be liable under Section 52 of the Communicable Diseases Act B.E. 2558 (2015), or Section 41 of the Price of Goods and Services Act B.E. 2542 (1999), as the case may be.

16. Enforcement: This Regulation shall be in force throughout the Kingdom including areas where a serious emergency situation has been declared, unless otherwise provided by other Regulations.
If necessary, the Prime Minister may issue Regulations to modify, increase or reduce measures, conditions or timeframes, by publishing the Regulations in the Government Gazette and disseminate to the public.
This Regulation shall come into effect from 26 March B.E. 2563 (2020).

Issued on 25 March B.E. 2563 (2020)
(General Prayut Chan-o-cha)
Prime Minister


Source: (Unofficial Translation) Regulation Issued under Section 9 of the Emergency Decree on Public Administration in Emergency Situations B.E. 2548 (2005) (No. 1)