Government closely monitoring face mask availability and price
The government is making efforts to ensure that there will be sufficient face masks for medical staff and citizens, deputy government spokesperson Ratchada Dhanadirek said on Sunday.
She said the subcommittee for supply management during the Covid-19 outbreak, chaired by the permanent secretary at the Prime Minister's Office, is working to ensure that the country has plenty of quality face masks and other medical supplies to be sold at a reasonable price.
She added that the subcommittee recently held a meeting with officials from Commerce, Public Health and Interior ministries as well as related agencies on monitoring the situation and surgical mask management.
"Currently, the production capacity of face masks at 63 factories nationwide was up to 5 million pieces a day," she said.
"So far, we have imported 256.82 million pieces of surgical masks, 238.23 million pieces of fabric masks and 992.98 million pieces of dustproof masks."
She explained that the Public Health Ministry and Government Pharmaceutical Organisation are responsible for the management of face masks for medical staff, while the Department of Internal Trade, Food and Drug Administration and Royal Thai Police are responsible for checking face masks' quality, arresting people who sell used face masks, and controlling the price to be in line with laws."
She added that retailers must sell surgical masks at not more than Bt2.50 a piece and must receive permission before exporting, citing the Central Committee on the Price of Goods and Services' announcement.
"People can contact the Department of Internal Trade: 1569 if retailers were found to be jacking up face mask price," she added.