The second bridge connecting the Thai north-western province of Tak and Myanmar is now open.
The bridge crosses the Moei river in the Mae Sot district of Tak and is expected to give Thai exports a significant boost, up from the current 78 billion baht a year to 100 billion.
The second friendship bridge was opened by the Thai Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob and Myanmar’s minister of construction, U Han Saw, in a ceremony held yesterday. As part of that ceremony, Thai PBS World reports that Mr Saksayam officially handed over the border road, along with an office building and office equipment, to Myanmar governance.
The second friendship bridge will be open to passenger vans, buses with more than 13 seats, as well as six-wheel and larger trucks, and will be open from 6.30am to 6.30pm everyday. The first bridge will be open to cars and smaller buses.
Mr Saksayam credits the first friendship bridge with easing travel between Mae Sot and Yangon, with around 230,000 vehicles crossing the border each year, as well as increasing trade between both countries to about 190 billion baht last year.
He added that a third bridge may be a possibility in the future if demand justifies it.
According to Thai PBS, border crossing fees are 50 baht for seven-seat four-wheel cars, 100 baht for mini buses with 7-12 seats, 150 baht for medium-sized buses with 13-24 seats, 200 baht for buses with more than 24 seats, 50 baht for four-wheel trucks, 250 baht for six wheelers, 350 baht for ten-wheel trucks and 500 baht for articulated lorries.