BANGKOK — Bangkok City Hall announced on Thursday that its New Year countdown events will be cancelled out of caution amid the spread of the omicron variant, though it remains unclear whether private events or those organized by other government agencies will follow suit.
Deputy Bangkok Governor Kriangyos Sudlabha said the decision was made in compliance with the World Health Organization’s recommendations to scrap holiday celebrations and mass travels in order to contain the pandemic.
The government is also asking the private sector to reconsider organizing countdown events, like those to be held at IconSiam and CentralWorld shopping malls. There’s currently no word on whether those festivities will still happen.
But the Tourism Authority of Thailand has already announced that they will keep their plans for a big New Year’s Eve countdown event while ramping up COVID-19 safety measures at the same time.
The show-must-go-on attitude is intended as a demonstration to the world that Thailand is still strong in handling the coronavirus pandemic, Tourism Authority of Thailand Governor Yuthasak Supasorn told reporters.
The event planned by the TAT is determined to meet the government’s mandate of COVID free setting, Yuthasak said, using an open-air venue and having strict rules for admission into the event.
Only fully vaccinated partiers will be allowed into the event, and all attendees will have to register in advance and take an antigen test before being admitted to the party. All performers, staff, and organisers of the event must also pass an antigen test.