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PHUKET: The Government has given the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) permission to spend 20 million baht on supporting tourists in the six provinces affected by the tsunami.

Deputy Prime Minister Suwat Liptapanlop said during a visit to the emergency centre at Phuket Provincial Hall that the TAT would receive 20 million baht of the 260 million baht Thailand has already received in foreign aid.

Tourism and Sports Minister Sontaya Kunplome said the money would be used to finance travel, accommodation, medical treatment and other support for foreign victims of the tsunami.

He added that Thais who had lost relatives are already receiving emergency payments of 10,000 baht each, while those who have been injured are receiving 2,000 baht each.