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More than 100,000 foreigners staying illegally in Thailand


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OVERSTAY IN PARADISE

More than 100,000 foreigners staying illegally in Thailand

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Source: File photo

BANGKOK: -- Following the announcement that the authorities in Thailand are considering introducing a 500 Baht fee for foreigners entering the country, it has been estimated that there are now more than 100,000 foreign nationals currently staying in the country despite their visa having already expired.

According to a report in the Bangkok Post, discussions between officials from the Ministry of Public Health, the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, and the Royal Thai Police, who had all agreed on the idea, want to use the 500 Baht fee scheme to help attract ‘quality’ tourists to Thailand and tackle the problem of foreigners staying in the country illegally.

After speaking to reporters about the scheme, the Minister for Public Health Mr Pradit Sintavanarong said "Now is the time for us to have quality tourists. It's not as if inbound tour operators won't organise tours for foreign tourists to come to the country because of the entry fees."

The money will also be used to provide additional funding for the government departments responsible for foreign affairs, health and tourism, and the Thai Immigration Bureau.

As well as boosting government funding, the money raised from the scheme will contribute to new measures that will ensure foreign visitors who enter Thailand will be unable to outstay their visa.

According to the Thai government, ‘illegal overtstaying’ poses genuine and significant problems for the authorities, who estimate that more than 100,000 foreigners are staying in the Land of Smiles on expired visas.

Following the announcement of the plans to introduce an entry fee to Thailand, the tourism industry hasn’t exactly responded favorably to the new ideas.

Sitdiwat Cheevarattanaporn, chairman of the Thai Travel Agents said the move could be harmful to what is a very lucrative holiday market.

Tourism has boomed in Thailand since the country first became a haven for backpackers in the 1970’s. According to the government, visitor figures for 2013 are set to be highest on record, with the number of current arrivals suggesting that tourism is already up more than 20% from 2012.

As for the people currently staying in Thailand after their visa has expired, if they are caught by the authorities they are immediately charged a penalty of 500 Baht per day up to a maximum of 20,000 Baht for staying the country illegally. More severe but not uncommon punishments can also include a jail sentence, deportation and possible blacklisting from ever being able to enter Thailand again.

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-- 2013-10-22

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500 baht per tourist, clap2.gif

Lets see all the greedy little piggy's sniffing out their share, so much for stopping corruption.

If the police and immigration did their job maybe the number of illegal overstays would be lower

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Just wonder where did they get those figures .. 100,000 foreigners illegal ... and how many illegals in European countries ? in the US ? this 500 baht will only be used to fill up some pockets of greedy politicians ... they call is government funding ! cheesy.gif

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... discussions between officials from the Ministry of Public Health, the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, and the Royal Thai Police, who had all agreed on the idea, want to use the 500 Baht fee scheme to help attract ‘quality’ tourists to Thailand and tackle the problem of foreigners staying in the country illegally

soooo... everbody with 500 Baht in his pocket on entering the LOS is a quality tourist??? Will I get the 500 Baht back on leaving the LOS and this will encourage tourists not to overstay???

wish those officials would listen to their on BS...

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... discussions between officials from the Ministry of Public Health, the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, and the Royal Thai Police, who had all agreed on the idea, want to use the 500 Baht fee scheme to help attract ‘quality’ tourists to Thailand and tackle the problem of foreigners staying in the country illegally

soooo... everbody with 500 Baht in his pocket on entering the LOS is a quality tourist??? Will I get the 500 Baht back on leaving the LOS and this will encourage tourists not to overstay???

wish those officials would listen to their on BS...

At least they have turned it into something positive...whistling.gif

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There are millions of illegal workers in Thailand.

But they are slaves to the rich and corrupt here so will not be mentioned.

I would argue they are far more likely to commit crime and be a problem for the authorities than John Smith from England who has got a bit beery and carried away and overstayed his tourist visa for a couple of days.

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The article implies that the 100,000 originally entered Thailand legally, possibly as tourists.

If so, how many 'illegal' fishermen, labourers, maids etc.from underdeveloped countries are also here? How many of those people have been trafficked, indentured, or enslaved? Who bought them here? Who are the Mr. Bigs? What are the authorities doing about this?

The telling point however are these gems, '...want to use the 500 Baht fee scheme to help attract ‘quality’ tourists to Thailand and tackle the problem of foreigners staying in the country illegally....The money will also be used to provide additional funding for the government departments responsible for foreign affairs, health and tourism, and the Thai Immigration Bureau.'

Ker ching...

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If they want rid of farang overstayers, declare an amnesty for 90 days, then after that make the daily fine unlimited. There's people here that are happy to pay the 20,000 baht on exit and overstay by years. They judge the risk of being caught against the aggro of getting visas. If the fine was unlimited, they'd leave. The sane one's would anyway.

So instead of a policy to deal with this problem, they'll punish all the honest people with a 500 baht charge.

Absurd

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