On Tuesday, the Cabinet of Thailand announced a new visa plan under which the permit to stay, of foreign nationals aged 50 or more, has been increased from one year to ten years. The vice-minister at the Prime Minister’s Office, Colonel Apisit Chaiyanuwat explains that, “the new visa having a fee of 10,000 baht will be valid only for five years initially and then it can be extended for five more years with renewal”.
Eligible foreign nationals are required to a show a monthly salary of minimum 100,000bt or at least 3 million baht bank deposit for a minimum period of one year, which is essential to avail the facilities of new visa plan.
The travellers satisfying these criteria have to report to immigration police on a regular interval of 90 days. In addition, they must be medically insured with at least USD 10,000 per year & USD 1,000 per year for inpatient care & outpatient care respectively.
The new visa plan was announced to promote and boost Thailand’s medical and wellness tourism. The new visa plan is to target long-stay visitors from various countries across the world that include India, China, Australia, Italy, Japan, Norway, England, Sweden, France, Switzerland, Taiwan, the US, the Netherlands, Germany and Canada, said by Colonel Apisit.
The Thai government estimates that, 107 billion baht of revenue was generated from medical tourism in 2014 and in 2015; Thailand was visited by a huge number of medical tourists which is estimated to be 1.3 million to 1.8 million foreign nationals.
The new visa plan boosts Thailand’s economy and allows the patients seeking medical treatment, to stay in Thailand for a period of maximum 90 days without visa, who are citizens of Middle Eastern countries including China, Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar and Cambodia.