Thailand keen on 24-hour checkpoint in Sadao

PETALING JAYA: Thailand is keen on having the Sadao immigration checkpoint in Danaok open around the clock. The Songkhla province has set up a panel to study the impact of the 24-hour checkpoint.

It hopes to end the long lines at immigration and the increasing cargo congestion, and promote trade and tourism, the Bangkok Post reported.

Deputy Songkhla governor Kajornsak Charoensopha was reported as saying the province was awaiting the report of a comprehensive study by Prince of Songkhla University.

Thailand and Malaysia have already agreed to a one-hour extension of working hours at the Sadao checkpoint in Songkhla and at Bukit Kanyu Hitam in Kedah to ease the growing congestion of loaded lorries.

About 98% of Thai-Malaysian border trade passes through Sadao, according to the Commerce Ministry of Thailand.

The Thai immigration office now opens from 5am to 11pm and the Malaysian side from 6am to midnight.