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Covid-19 infections could escalate to thousands in Thailand

Covid-19 patients in Thailand increased by 122 on Monday (March 23), taking the total to more than 700.

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Coronavirus Asia

The number of those who will become infected with Covid-19 could soon escalate to thousands if people don’t strictly follow the social-distancing measure, a top government official warned today (March 23).

The Ministry of Public Health on Sunday announced 188 new cases of the virus, officially known as Covid-19, bringing the total number of infections in Thailand to 599.

Public Health Ministry deputy permanent secretary Supakit Sirilak showed a graph representing the tendency of Covid-19 infections and said Thailand is already in the “golden period” of infections since the country now has 721 cases.

Covid-19 patients in Thailand increased by 122 on Monday (March 23), taking the total to more than 700.

“When the number of those infected reaches 100, the infection rate will escalate quickly, we will face the same situation as Europe, which has been hit by thousands of infections within a short period of time if we don’t follow the measure very strictly.”

Public Health Ministry deputy permanent secretary Supakit Sirilak
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Skin-lightening products market to reach US$31 billion by 2024

In emerging Asian and African economies, the natural aspiration to enhance one’s circumstances has led to rapid growth in the market for skin-lightening products, which is projected to reach US$31 billion by 2024.

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Recent years have seen evolving awareness of systemic inequities including racism, sexism and pro-Western chauvinism.

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Has Covid-19 prompted the Belt and Road Initiative to go green?

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Has Covid-19 prompted the Belt and Road Initiative to go green?
– Covid-19 led to a slowdown in BRI projects
– Chinese overseas investment dropped off in 2020
– Government remains committed to the wide-ranging infrastructure programme
– Sustainability, health and digital to be the new cornerstones of the initiative 

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Following a year of coronavirus-related disruptions, China appears to be placing a greater focus on sustainable, digital and health-related projects in its flagship Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

As OBG outlined in April last year, the onset of Covid-19 prompted questions about the future direction of the BRI.

Launched in 2013, the BRI is an ambitious international initiative that aims to revive ancient Silk Road trade routes through large-scale infrastructure development.

By the start of 2020 some 2951 BRI-linked projects – valued at a total of $3.9trn – were planned or under way across the world.

However, as borders closed and lockdowns were imposed, progress stalled on a number of major BRI infrastructure developments.

In June China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that 30-40% of BRI projects had been affected by the virus, while a further 20% had been “seriously affected”. Restrictions on the flow of Chinese workers and construction supplies were cited as factors behind project suspensions or slowdowns in Pakistan, Cambodia and Indonesia, among other countries.

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Business

Marijuana could generate up to Bt8 billion for Thailand’s pharmaceutical industry

Last year, Thailand removed cannabis and hemp leaves from its list of banned narcotics (seeds and buds remain banned).

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Marijuana could generate up to Bt8 billion for Thailand’s pharmaceutical industry over the next five years, but farmers stand to make little from growing the herb, experts say.

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