Thailand's government-run Centre for Maintaining Peace and Order (CMPO) will propose lifting the emergency decree that is imposed in Bangkok and adjacent provinces during a cabinet meeting on March 18, Thai Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul has said.

The Nation newspaper of Thailand quoted Surapong as saying that the CMPO, which is in charge of enforcing the decree, will ask the cabinet to replace the order with the Internal Security Act (ISA).

According to a statement from the centre, once the ISA takes effect, the CMPO will develop into a new centre with a similar structure to supervise military, police and civilian activities.

The removal of the decree will facilitate investment and tourism and business activities in the country, the statement stressed.

The proposal is made due to mounting pressure from businesses who have suffered losses under the state of emergency. There has also been a recent easing in political tension on the street.

The decree has been effective since January 22 in Nonthaburi and Patumthani provinces, part of Samut Prakarn province and all districts in Bangkok. It was introduced to cope with prolonged anti-government protests vulnerable to violence and bloodsheds. It is scheduled to expire on March 22.-VNA