BANGKOK, Jan. 19 (Xinhua) -- Thailand's cabinet of ministers on Tuesday approved an economic support plan worth over 210 billion baht (about 7 billion U.S. dollars) to aid low-income earners and businesses affected by COVID-19.
Under the plan, the government will offer some 31.1 million people 3,500 baht per month for February and March, said an official attached to the Government House.
Eligible recipients will include farmers, self-employed workers and other low-income earners, and they will have to download and register the App Rao Chana (We Win) from Jan. 29 to obtain the grant, according to the official, who only spoke on condition of anonymity.
The money will not be handed out in cash, but used to pay via the App for the purchase of goods and services at restaurants, food shops, retail stores, hotels and servicing shops throughout the country, the official said. The goods will exclude alcoholic beverages.
Those who currently hold state welfare cards, have joined the government's co-payment campaign and earn less than 300,000 baht per year are also eligible for the grant.
Thailand has so far confirmed 12,594 infections, with more than 8,000 of these cases reported since mid-December and 61 of the country's 77 provinces and regions having active cases.
The Bank of Thailand said though the latest outbreak spread faster compared with last year, the economic impacts would be milder as the government has been imposing more flexible restrictive measures, with fewer businesses being suspended. (1 USD equals 30 Baht) Enditem