The Agriculture Ministry is seeking cooperation from border checkpoints in Ranong and Prachuap Khiri Khan to watch out for durian saplings being taken into Myanmar, a senior official said Thursday.
Suwit Chaikiarttiyos, director general of the ministry’s Agriculture Department, said he has instructed officials from his department to step up their checks at border checkpoints in Ranong and Prachuap Khiri Khan following a spate of attempts to take durian saplings into Myanmar.
In the latest incident, Suwit said many durian saplings were found at a house near the Singkhon border checkpoint in Prachuap Khiri Khan.
Suwat explained that neither the soil nor the water in the area was suitable for growing durian, indicating that the plants were being collected in the location for smuggling to Myanmar.
He said the Agriculture Ministry prohibits the exports of durian saplings for fear that it would affect the durian industry in the country.
Suwit said officials have learned that the saplings in question belonged to a Myanmar national who holds Thai citizenship.