The Thai Cabinet on January 26 approved a new round of Covid-19 relief for low-income groups. The new package will offer 7,000 baht ($230) in credit for shopping necessities and cover around 30 million people.
Eligible for the new scheme are state welfare card holders, recipients of the shopping and travel co-payment schemes, and other groups.
The government will transfer the e-payment to recipients, but it cannot be withdrawn as cash. Welfare cards holders will receive money automatically on February 5. Co-payment recipients will be automatically screened for eligibility and do not have to re-register for the new scheme. Others have to register at xn--b3czh8ayeuf.com (which when converted into its Thai domain name translates to “Thai triumph”) between January 29 and February 12.
Key conditions of eligibility are taxable income of not more than 300,000 baht in 2019 and total bank deposits of not more than 500,000 baht as of December 31 last year. Recipients can use the e-payment to pay for goods, but not alcoholic drinks or cigarettes.
The e-payments can also be used for public transport, and taxis, tuk-tuks and motorcycle taxis, said Minister of Finance Arkhom Termpittayapaisith.
The ministry estimates the package will cover 30.1 million mostly self-employed people.
The government is also considering aid measures for low-ranking state officials, Arkhom said.
THE NATION (THAILAND)/ASIA NEWS NETWORK