Asean Morning News Roundup For February 24

Asean Morning News Roundup For February 24
Estimated Reading Time: 26 minutes |

The Asean Morning News Roundup presents a selection of reports on what you need to know from around the Asean Economic Community (AEC).

 

Asean morning newsAsean Morning News

Compiled by AEC News Today @aecnewstoday

 

Joint patrols proposed for South China Sea
Indonesian president Joko Widodo will raise the idea of holding joint patrols in the South China Sea when he meets the prime minister.
– SkyNews Australia

ESCAP and ASEAN: Working together for the region
THE Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has shown to be an exemplary role model for regional cooperation guiding the 10-country bloc on the path toward shared prosperity and sustainable development.
— BusinessWorld

Japan-ASEAN Cyber Cooperation in the Spotlight
On February 17, Japan’s NEC Corporation announced that it had secured a contract from Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to help boost Southeast Asian cyber capabilities.
— The Diplomat (paywall)

Will Hydropower Turn the Tide on the Salween River?
It is among the most visited, most photographed and most widely known natural wonder: the Grand Canyon of the Colorado River in the United States. But nearly 180 degrees around the globe sits the Grand Canyon of the East: deeper, longer and virtually unknown.
– Mekong Eye

Fernandes proposes a single listed Asean holding firm for AirAsia
PETALING JAYA: AirAsia Bhd’s founder Tan Sri Tony Fernandes says he wants to combine the group’s separate units in Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines under a single listed Asean holding company.
— The Star Online

ESCAP and ASEAN: Working together for the region
THE Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has shown to be an exemplary role model for regional cooperation guiding the 10-country bloc on the path toward shared prosperity and sustainable development. Since its launch in 1967, ASEAN has indeed come a long way in accelerating economic growth, promoting durable peace, and nurturing a common vision in the sub region. The rate of poverty has been reduced from 40% in 1990 to just 8% in 2012 (compared to regional average of 15%), GDP per capita has been raised to almost $4,000 over the past decade, and with a combined GDP of $2.5 trillion, ASEAN is now the seventh largest economy in the world and the third in Asia-Pacific.
— BusinessWorld Online Edition (Opinion)

China hopes to complete drafting COC framework with ASEAN before midyear
BEIJING, Feb. 22 (Xinhua) — China hopes to work with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to complete the draft of a framework of the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea (COC) before midyear, a spokesperson said Wednesday.
— CCTV

 

Cambodia morning newsCambodia Morning News

Compiled by Vat Vin    @vin_vat

 

Demonstrators Attacked as Cambodian Court Convicts Prominent Activist
Security guards outside a Phnom Penh courthouse attacked demonstrators who came to support land rights activist Tep Vanny during her trial Thursday for a 2013 protest near Prime Minister Hun Sen’s home.
– Radio Free Asia

Cambodia jails land rights activist for 2-1/2 years
A Cambodian court convicted and sentenced a prominent land rights activist to 2-1/2 years in jail on Thursday for her role in a protest outside Prime Minister Hun Sen’s residence in 2013.
– Reuters

Infrastructure development struggles to keep pace with needs of a growing city
City expansion and the fast rate of private-sector development are causes for celebration. However, Phnom Penh citizens continue to be disappointed when heavy rain floods the streets, causing rubbish to float and blocking the sewage system.
—  The Phnom Penh Post

‘We Are Private Institutions’—Banks and MFIs Heed Prime Minister
More commercial banks and microfinance institutions (MFIs) were working hastily on Thursday to replace logos that could be confused with those of national agencies and comply with a government directive to publicly declare that they are private institutions, not state-owned.
—  The Cambodia Daily (Paywall)

Why Angelina Jolie’s New Cambodia Movie Matters
There has been no shortage of movies made about Cambodia and the Khmer Rouge. Some, like David Putnam’s The Killing Fields, hit their mark in the 1980s and became a cultural reference point for one of the great tragedies of the 20th century.
—  The Diplomat

Kingdom sees major increase in United States investment
US investments in Cambodia increased 15-fold last year, due mainly to the construction of a new Coca-Cola plant in the Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone, according to a statement from the Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC).
 Khmer Times

Laos border row ‘not discussed’
On a two-day state visit, Laos President Bounnhang Vorachith yesterday met with Prime Minister Hun Sen, though an official claimed the pair did not discuss a small-scale military standoff on Cambodia’s border with its northern neighbour.
— Phnom Penh Post

Bentleys to be sold in Cambodia
Bentley Motors Group, which is based in the United Kingdom, has collaborated with and has now authorized the Cambodian-based HGB Group to bring the upmarket Bentley cars into the local market.
Khmer Times

Local home loans survive a slowdown
Commercial banks saw strong growth in housing loans last year despite a slowdown in the real estate sector, which could have a knock-on effect and threaten the growth of the country’s services.
Khmer Times

Meat imports rack up $100M tab
Cambodians spent over $100 million on imported meat last year, further widening the gap of domestic supply as local producers failed to capture the lucrative protein market, a government official said yesterday.
—  The Phnom Penh Post

KrisEnergy to consider selling stake in Block A
Singapore-listed KrisEnergy Ltd is considering selling or farming out a stake in its Cambodia Block A offshore oilfield to ease its debt burden, according to the company’s 2016 year-end report.
  The Phnom Penh Post

‘Desperate’ Australian couples unable to leave Cambodia with surrogate babies
Around 10 Australian couples have been left in legal limbo in Cambodia — unable to bring surrogate babies home months after their birth — as they wait for the Government in Phnom Penh to draft new laws on surrogacy.
– ABC (Australia)

Court acquits two Thais accused of human trafficking
A provincial court in southern Thailand has dismissed human trafficking charges filed by Cambodian workers against a Thai fishing boat captain and a fish market owner.
Prachatai

Vietnam on full alert as bird flu hits neighbors China, Cambodia
Vietnam’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has called for elevated efforts from the administrations of border localities to prevent a cross-border spread of bird flu caused by avian influenza A(H7N9) and other viral strains to Vietnam.
Tuoi Tre News

 

Indonesia morning newsIndonesia Morning News

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu    @Estee

 

Joint patrols proposed for South China Sea
Indonesian president Joko Widodo will raise the idea of holding joint patrols in the South China Sea when he meets the prime minister.
– SkyNews Australia

Indonesia to reduce plastic wastes by 70 percent
The Indonesian government is committed to reducing plastic wastes by 70 percent by the end of 2025, initiated with the launch of a national action plan for tackling plastic wastes in oceans.
— Antara News

Japan firm launches fingerprint payment service in Indonesia
TOKYO – Information and technology company Liquid Inc said Thursday it has launched a payment service using fingerprint authentication in Indonesia.
— Bangkok Post

Four Indonesians richer than poorest 100 million
A report on inequality in Indonesia says its four richest men now have more wealth than 100 million of the country’s poorest people.
— Al Jazeera

Legal avenues should be used to work abroad: BNP2TKI
The Agency for the Placement and Protection of Indonesian Migrant Workers’ (BNP2TKI) head, Nusron Wahid, has called on those wishing to work abroad to use legal avenues to do so.
— Jakarta Post

Indonesia’s Printerous raises $1.4M to digitize traditional printing
Printerous, an Indonesia startup that is bringing the country’s printing industry into the digital era, has raised $1.4 million. The round was led by Golden Gate Ventures with participation from U.S. firm Sovereign’s Capital and Indonesian conglomerate Gunung Sewu Kencana.
— TechCrunch

House of representatives supports Chevron`s oil, gas management takeover plan
House of representatives member Ikhwan Datu Adam supports the plan of the North Penajam Paser administration, East Kalimantan, to take over the management of Chevron Indonesia Companys oil and gas fields in Terminal Lawe-Lawe, Penajam.
— Antara News

Student mobility plays a key role in linking Indonesia and the Netherlands
From Feb. 12 to 16, the Dutch Education, Culture and Science Minister Dr. Jet Bussemaker visited Indonesia to further strengthen ties in the fields of education and research between the two countries. Central themes during the intensive bilateral discussions were student mobility and the connection between education and the labor market.
— Jakarta Post

Indonesia’s Child Protection Commission wants compensation for minors jailed in adult prisons
Indonesia’s Child Protection Commission has demanded the Australian Government pay compensation to a group of Indonesians allegedly jailed in adult prisons while they were minors.
— ABC News

Construction of new Semanggi overpass to take only a month
The planned additional overpass on the side of Jl. Gatot Subroto, as a part of the development of the Semanggi traffic cloverleaf in Central Jakarta, is set to be finished within a month, a contractor has said.
— Jakarta Post

Indonesia seeks Saudi Arabia’s support to develop Sumatra tourism
Indonesia will seek for Saudi Arabia’s support to develop local tourism during the visit of the Middle Eastern country’s leader, King Salman, slated on Mar. 1 to 9.
— Jakarta Post

Indonesia increases weight limit for imported Australian cattle
The Indonesian Government has signed off on changes to the maximum average weight of feeder cattle imported from Australia.
— ABC Online

Worse for Wear: Indonesia’s Textile Boom
WITH THE FIRST light, men in long boats are on the Upper Citarum River, filling their hulls with bottles, cans and bits of broken plastic — anything that can be recycled for a few rupiahs. Everything anyone might throw away is here.
— Undark Magazine

Indonesian President invites Sri Lankan President for a state visit to Indonesia
The President of Indonesia Joko Widodo has invited Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena to pay a state visit to his country immediately after latter’s scheduled participation at the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Summit meeting to be held in Jakarta.
— Colombo Page

Bioenergy in Indonesia
Indonesia – Research on bioenergy is in high demand in Indonesia, where the sector is seen as a potential way forward for energy security and sustainable development.
— Forests News

Freeport-McMoRan: This Time, Indonesian Problems Look Serious
Freeport-McMoRan fails to reach an acceptable deal with Indonesian government.
— Seeking Alpha

PICTURE: Citilink receives Indonesia’s first A320neo
Citilink has taken delivery of its first Airbus A320neo, making it the first Indonesian carrier to operate the type.
— Flight Global

Indonesians detained in Saudi Arabia for bomb joke return home
Two Indonesians detained in Saudi Arabia after joking about being in possession of explosive materials inside a plane have returned home following a month-long investigation.
— Jakarta Post

 

Lao PDR morning newsLao PDR Morning News

Compiled by Jose Rodriguez Senas    @15Souter

 

Laos Must Broaden Tax Base, Strengthen Administration: IMF
Laos should increase its revenues by broadening the tax base, reducing exemptions, and strengthening tax administration, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said in its Article IV Report for the country.
— Tax-News

Auction for leaders’ cars rescheduled, starting prices revealed
An auction for the cars that have been withdrawn from leaders, previously slated for Tuesday February 21, has been rescheduled to next Tuesday February 28, authorities in charge have announced.
— Vientiane Times

Laos border row ‘not discussed’
On a two-day state visit, Laos President Bounnhang Vorachith yesterday met with Prime Minister Hun Sen, though an official claimed the pair did not discuss a small-scale military standoff on Cambodia’s border with its northern neighbour.
— Phnom Penh Post

New decision aims to enhance project implementation and costings
A new draft Prime Ministerial Decision plans to make all government investment project costs and technical specification estimations subject to Ministry of Public Works oversight.
— Vientiane Times

Laos, China Enhance Cooperation on Foreign Affairs
(KPL) Lao and Chinese senior officials agreed on Thursday at a bilateral meeting in Vientiane to continue to promote cooperation on foreign affairs between the two countries
— Lao News Agency

Monthly Cabinet Meeting Prepares Laws for NA to Consider
(KPL) The monthly cabinet meeting for February has been focusing discussions on two draft laws on water and water resources and protection of domestic industry so as to submit drafts to the National Assembly meeting for consideration.
— Lao News Agency

Govt dealing with illegal petrol imports
New requirements for companies seeking to import petroleum to Laos are being reviewed or devised after the government made a decision last month to reduce the number of fuel companies from 22 to five.
— Vientiane Times

Xayaboury Rice Exports Reach 80,000 Tonnes
(KPL) Farmers in Xayaboury Province recorded annual rice exports of 80,000 tonnes and an annum rice production of 520 kg per capita last year.
— Lao News Agency

You won’t find this Laotian cooking in Laos, and that’s the point
Laap (a.k.a. larb) is always a meaty dish: flesh, offal, and skin, all minced together and seasoned, sometimes with fresh blood.
— bon appetit

 

Malaysia morning newsMalaysia Morning News

Compiled by Vat Vin    @vin_vat

 

Kim Jong-nam Was Killed by VX Nerve Agent, Malaysians Say
Malaysia — The poison used to kill Kim-Jong-nam, the half brother of the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, was VX nerve agent, a substance listed as a chemical weapon, the Malaysian police announced Friday.
The New York Times

Axiata Group reports RM309.4m loss in Q42016
Axiata Group Bhd reported a RM309.4 million loss in the final quarter of 2016, in contrast to a net profit of RM467.2 million that the company reported in 4Q2015.
New Straits Times

Fernandes proposes a single listed Asean holding firm for AirAsia
PETALING JAYA: AirAsia Bhd’s founder Tan Sri Tony Fernandes says he wants to combine the group’s separate units in Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines under a single listed Asean holding company.
— The Star Online

Malaysian palm oil price hits near 4-month low on rising output, weak demand
Malaysian palm oil futures fell on Thursday evening, charting a fifth session of losses in six and hitting their lowest in nearly four months as concerns persisted over rising production and weak exports.
The Star Online

Thailand’s PTT interested in Petronas offshore gas stake
Thailand’s PTT Plc is interested in bidding for a stake in the SK316 offshore gas block in Malaysia’s state of Sarawak, Chief Executive Thewin Wongwanich said on Wednesday.
Deal Street Asia

TM targets 4pc revenue expansion this year
Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM) is targeting up to four per cent revenue growth for the financial year ending December 31 2017, from RM12.06 billion revenue recorded last year, despite an increasingly challenging business environment.
New Straits Times

Strategies help sustain Media Prima growth
Media Prima Bhd’s move to optimise printing plant capacity and unlock potential cost savings while investing in digital expansion has helped sustain the group’s long-term growth.
New Straits Times

Prasarana honoured for public transport infrastructure initiative
Prasarana Malaysia Bhd’s (Prasarana) contribution in the transportation sector was given recognition by the prestigious Middle East Business Leaders Awards (MEBLA).
New Straits Times

IJM unit secures RM1bil job from MFBBCC Retail Mall
IJM Corp Bhd has clinched a construction job from MFBBCC Retail Mall Sdn Bhd worth RM1.16bil.
The Star Online

Zeti will cooperate with probe into BNM forex loss probe
Former Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) governor Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz says she is willing to cooperate with the investigation into the alleged foreign exchange (forex)trading loss of US$10 billion by the central bank in the 1990s.
The Star Online

Maybank remains an Add at CIMB Research, low exposure to O&G
CIMB Equities Research is retaining its Add recommendation for Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) on its expectations of a recovery in earnings per share growth in FY17F.
The Star Online

 

Myanmar morning newsMyanmar Morning News

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu    @Estee

 

Activists Urge Unilever to Press Myanmar, Help Rohingya
Activists are urging Unilever, a major investor in Myanmar, to speak out against the country’s treatment of its Rohingya minority, which the U.N. has said may be called “crimes against humanity.”
— Voice of America

Myanmar workers in Thailand go on strike for labour rights
A total of 300 Myanmar migrants working at INDEX, a motorcycle helmet factory in Bangkok, went on strike to demand better working conditions and rights, said Thai-based migrants rights organisation Aid Alliance Committee (AAC) yesterday.
— Myanmar Times

2 Japanese mega firms enter JV in Myanmar
IN A BID to fill the gap of limited foreign investment in Myanmar’s agricultural sector, Japanese diesel engine manufacturer Yanmar and global trading firm Mitsui & Co on Tuesday launched a joint-venture sales business in the nation’s commercial hub.
— Eleven

Najib congratulates, thanks volunteers of ‘Food Flotilla for Myanmar’ mission
Datuk Seri Najib Razak congratulated and thanked all volunteers of the ‘Food Flotilla For Myanmar’ humanitarian mission for all the time, energy and sweat spent in ensuring success of the mission.
— Malay Mail Online

350 Myanmar farmers facing court over land grabs
Some 350 farmers from Myanmar’s Mandalay region are facing court cases related to land-grabbing, most of them brought since Aung San Suu Kyi’s government took power a year ago, lawyers and activists said Thursday.
— Channel NewsAsia

No peace with Myanmar government in sight, powerful rebel group warns
The head of Myanmar’s most powerful ethnic rebel group has threatened to derail the government’s wobbling push for peace as fierce fighting in the country’s restive borderlands has reached a critical point.
— Press TV

UNICEF applauds as Myanmar signs the Paris Principles on children associated with armed forces and groups [EN/MY]
UNICEF welcomes Myanmar’s signature of the Paris Principles on Children Associated with Armed Forces or Armed Groups on the occasion of the Paris 21st Feb 2017 Conference, organized by UNICEF and France.
— Relief Web

Mooted Yangon expansion plans revived
Yangon Region Chief Minister U Phyo Min Thein said that the regional government will launch the Yangon New City project in Kyeemyindaing township, but firms involved in the Yangon Southwest New City were not informed about the new plan.
— Myanmar Times

Fundraiser for children with leukemia
As the number of children with leukemia increases, the Myat Parami non-profit organisation, hospital staff and private donors have joined hands to set up a fundraising committee to help the young patients.
— Myanmar Times

Panasonic to expand business in Myanmar
Japanese electronics giant Panasonic Corp aims to expand its electric appliance business in Myanmar by launching a new air-conditioner model and opening four more service centers in 2017.
— Bangkok Post

“Expedition Myanmar” reveals far-flung tourist destinations
Bagan, Mandalay, Inle Lake – these three cities are the most common destinations for international and local tourists alike. While the tranquil nature of Inle Lake and awe-inspiring temples of Bagan are certainly picturesque, there are countless more far-flung wonders to explore in Myanmar.
— Myanmar Times

Myanmar security forces probe Rohingya prison deaths
Myanmar’s security forces are investigating the deaths of eight Rohingya in custody who were among hundreds arrested during a military crackdown in the north of Rakhine state, the government said Wednesday.
— Mizzima News

Myanmar monks to protest in solidarity with Thailand’s Dhammakaya Temple
A group of nationalist monks are planning to hold protests in Yangon to express their solidarity with the Dhammakaya Temple in Thailand, which has been the subject of a police crackdown over the past week.
— Frontier Myanmar

 

Philippines morning newsPhilippines Morning News

Compiled by Jose Rodriguez Senas    @15Souter

 

Senator Leila de Lima arrested in the Philippines
A Philippines senator and staunch critic of President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs has been arrested by law enforcement agents after charges were filed in court alleging she received money from drug dealers inside the country’s prisons.
— Aljazeera

Businesses start 2017 a bit less bullish
BUSINESSES opened the year slightly less optimistic than in December and a year ago, faced with a seasonal slack in demand and expectations of tighter financial conditions, according to a recent survey conducted by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).
— BusinessWorld

2016 joblessness steadies after Q4 spike
THE NUMBER of jobless Filipinos hardly changed last year from 2015, according to a Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey that bared a fourth-quarter reading that was the worst in two years.
— BusinessWorld

Chinese commerce minister abruptly postpones Philippines trip: sources
China’s commerce minister decided at the last minute to postpone an official trip to the Philippines on Thursday to sign about 40 joint projects worth billions of dollars, sources at the Philippines trade and finance ministries said.
— Reuters

China promised Philippines not to build in disputed shoal: Philippines’ FM
Chinese President Xi Jinping promised Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte that Beijing would not build structures on a rocky outcrop in the South China Sea, Foreign Minister Perfecto Yasay said on Thursday.
— Reuters

ADB commits $100 M loan to Phl
The Asian Development Bank has committed to extend to the government this year a soft loan of around $100 million to finance feasibility studies on infrastructure projects, in the Philippines, economic managers said yesterday.
— Philippine Star

Philippines to crack down on spectrum hoarding
The Philippines’ Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) plans to crack down on spectrum hoarders, threatening to recall unused frequencies and potentially auction them to a third or even fourth local player.
– Telecom Asia

Shoppers in Philippines and Thailand are feeling good: Nielsen
Consumers in Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam are feeling confident, but Singaporeans and Malaysians not so much, according to the Nielsen Global Survey of Consumer Confidence and Spending Intentions.
— Campaign

Free tuition pledge under fire in Philippines
Economists have hit out against a new policy that would scrap tuition fees at state universities in the Philippines.
— Times Higher Education

Citi unveils PH’s first digital credit card program
American banking giant Citi has rolled out the Philippines’ first fully digital credit card application and approval program, harnessing technology to scale up its consumer banking business and encourage the shift to digital banking.
— Philippine Daily Inquirer

Peppermint puts foot on the gas in Philippines
Perth financial technology company Peppermint Innovation may have discovered a lucrative new route to market for their interesting mobile bill payment technology.
— The West Australian

Light Reaction launches in Philippines
Light Reaction, the performance advertising business that is part of Xaxis, has launched in Philippines.
— campaign

 

Singapore morning newsSingapore Morning News

Compiled by Leakhena Khat    @leakhenakhat

 

Disrupting the disruptors: Singapore rattles sharing economy with rule change
Singapore, a keen early adopter of the sharing economy, has fired a warning shot across the bow of Airbnb and Uber with tighter rules that could shake up their business models and growth ambitions in Asia.
Reuters 

Singapore stays the course on globalization and fiscal policy
Singapore, rated (Aaa stable) by Moody’s, stayed on course with its focus on fiscal prudence and maintaining its role as a global trading and business services hub.
The Independent

Singapore consumer prices rise for second straight month in January
Consumer prices in Singapore rose in January for a second consecutive month, reflecting the increase in the price of oil-related items such as electricity and petrol as well as higher services inflation.
Today Online

Smaller public projects to start earlier to boost construction sector
The $700 million worth of infrastructure projects that will get off the ground earlier will be smaller public projects, such as the upgrading of community clubs, sports facilities and police posts.
The Straits Times 

Operating cost of water system jumped S$0.8b in 15 years
It cost about S$1.3 billion to operate Singapore’s water system in 2015, compared with S$0.5 billion in 2000, national water agency PUB has disclosed.
Today Online

Singapore’s January inflation higher at 0.6%, in line with economists’ expectations
SINGAPORE’S January headline inflation climbed to 0.6 per cent year on year – in line with economists’ expectations – due to a hike in the cost of oil-related items, a smaller drop in car prices, and higher services inflation.
The Business Times 

Singapore: Could Age Law Be Silver Lining for Older Workers?
The government of Singapore wants its people not just to live long, but also to prosper a little longer, as it prepares to tack on two more years to the reemployment age.
Bloomberg BNA 

Congressional Budget Office to watch Singapore Budget?
Concerns that higher public spending will worsen Singapore’s primary deficit have prompted experts to call for a more transparent and accountable approach to how
taxpayer dollars are spent.
The Straits Times

With the carbon tax, a new chapter in Singapore’s economy opens
FIRST, a two-step hike in the water price in July this year and July 2018. And then a carbon tax from 2019, which would most likely mean higher electricity prices.
The Business Times 

Analysis: Singapore can’t afford to let oil exports lose edge despite carbon tax
Singapore will need to strike the right balance in implementing a planned carbon tax from 2019 to ensure its refining industry remains competitive as the sector faces headwinds from volatile margins, growing exports from China and rising capacity in the region.
Platts

Grab to include variation of van-pooling in expansion plans
Fresh from launching a coach booking service earlier this month, Grab plans to start at least one more service this year as it continues its efforts to wean Singaporeans off their cars and bring down transport costs.
Today Online 

More than 900 from Singapore apply for IT jobs in New Zealand
More than 900 IT professionals from Singapore have applied to work in New Zealand’s capital city Wellington, highlighting the growing fight for global talent in this arena.
Channel NewsAsia

 

Thailand morning newsThailand Morning News

Compiled by John Le Fevre    @photo-journ

 

Court acquits two Thais accused of human trafficking
A provincial court in southern Thailand has dismissed human trafficking charges filed by Cambodian workers against a Thai fishing boat captain and a fish market owner.
— Prachatai

BOT embraces big data, analytics for micro-financial activities
THE BANK OF THAILAND (BOT) is investing in big data and data analytics in an effort to deal with complicated transactions arising from consumers’ micro-financial activities in the digital age.
– The Nation

Thailand’s Mobile LTE gets satellite license
Thai mobile broadband provider Mobile LTE has secured the nation’s second satellite service provider license, positioning the company to compete against incumbent Thaicom.
— Telecom Asia

True Corp to splurge Bt20 bn on mobile, broadband platforms
TRUE CORP PLANS to invest Bt20 billion this year on the further expansion of its mobile-phone and broadband Internet networks, executive committee chairman Suphachai Chearavanont said.
– The Nation

Erawan plans to double hotel portfolio by 2020
THE ERAWAN Group aims to more than double the number of hotels its operates to 95 by 2020 under an ambitious expansion drive at home and abroad, the group’s president said yesterday.
– The Nation

Police move to indict 10 suspects in Mother’s Day attacks
Deputy national police chief Pol General Srivara Rangsipramanakul yesterday submitted 16 case reports to military court prosecutors in Nakhon Si Thammarat province in relation to the Mother’s Day bomb and arson attacks in seven provinces last year.
— The Nation

Myanmar workers in Thailand go on strike for labour rights
A total of 300 Myanmar migrants working at INDEX, a motorcycle helmet factory in Bangkok, went on strike to demand better working conditions and rights, said Thai-based migrants rights organisation Aid Alliance Committee (AAC) yesterday.
— Myanmar Times

New Charoen Pokphand CEO unveils ‘CP 4.0’ plan
THE NEWLY appointed chief executive officer of Charoen Pokphand Group, Suphachai Chearavanont, plans to transform the Thai conglomerate into “CP 4.0” by embracing innovation and the digital revolution.
— The Nation

Media bill feeds junta ambitions to stay in power: senior journalists
Senior journalists have denounced the junta’s controversial Media Bill, arguing the junta wishes to entrench itself in power rather than promote truth and responsible media.
— Prachatai

Coffee World to double Thai outlets
COFFEE WORLD has announced that it plans to double the number of its coffee houses in Thailand over the next five years to about 175.
– The Nation

Somyot gets final sentence of 6 years for lèse majesté
After almost six years in prison, Somyot Prueksakasemsuk, a long-time labour activist turned lèse majesté suspect, was sentenced to six years in jail by the Supreme Court for royal defamation and another year for defaming a military general.
— Prachatai

Myanmar monks to protest in solidarity with Thailand’s Dhammakaya Temple
A group of nationalist monks are planning to hold protests in Yangon to express their solidarity with the Dhammakaya Temple in Thailand, which has been the subject of a police crackdown over the past week.
— Frontier Myanmar

Emergency powers abused at Wat Dhammakaya: lawyers
Human rights lawyers have called on the junta to cease the use of absolute powers during the ongoing clash between authorities and monks at Wat Dhammakaya.
— Prachatai

Thailand’s PTT interested in Petronas offshore gas stake
Thailand’s PTT Plc is interested in bidding for a stake in the SK316 offshore gas block in Malaysia’s state of Sarawak, Chief Executive Thewin Wongwanich said on Wednesday.
— Deal Street Asia

Providing quality education to one million students in Thailand’s small schools
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s latest Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) results brought several pieces of alarming news for Thailand.
— The World Bank

 

Vietnam morning newsVietnam Morning News

Compiled by John Le Fevre    @photo-journ

 

Up to 90% of Vietnamese to have Internet access: IT official
Vietnam is looking to raise its Internet accessibility from just over 50 percent to between 80 and 90 percent of the population, an IT official said Wednesday.
– Tuoi Tre News

Vietnam on full alert as bird flu hits neighbors China, Cambodia
Vietnam’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has called for elevated efforts from the administrations of border localities to prevent a cross-border spread of bird flu caused by avian influenza A(H7N9) and other viral strains to Vietnam.
– Tuoi Tre News

FDI hits $3.4 billion in first two months
Foreign direct investment (FDI) in Viet Nam reached US$3.4 billion in the first two months of the year, up 21.5 per cent, compared to the same period last year, the Foreign Investment Agency’s latest statistics has revealed.
— Vietnam News (biz hub)

Vietnam to collect tax arrears from online hotel booking services
Foreign-based online accommodation booking services will be the next to be targeted by Vietnamese tax authorities in an effort to improve fair competition for local businesses.
– Tuoi Tre News

Vietnam audit finds multiple projects with unnecessarily long toll period
Multiple road and bridge projects in Vietnam are applying toll-collecting periods that are up to 13 years longer than they should be, the country’s state auditor has said.
– Tuoi Tre News

Domestic private conglomerates want to invest in subway systems
VietNamNet Bridge – Hanoi’s Mayor Nguyen Duc Chung said three Vietnamese large construction and real estate conglomerates – Vingroup, Xuan Thanh and Lung Lo Groups – have expressed their willingness to invest in the metro system in Hanoi.
— Vietnam Net

In downtown Saigon, officials mount ‘sidewalk reclamation’ campaign against state cars
Authorities in District 1, Ho Chi Minh City have proved that in their ‘sidewalk reclamation’ campaign, which has seen numerous car owners fined for parking their vehicles on the sidewalk, no one stands above the law.
– Tuoi Tre News

Ho Chi Minh City pilots automatic toilet cabin in downtown area
An automatic toilet cabin has been piloted in downtown Ho Chi Minh City and is expected to provide convenience for local residents and tourists.
–  Tuoi Tre News

Vietnam wants to develop high-tech wind power plants
Fifty wind power projects have been registered in Vietnam so far, but only four of them, with the total capacity of 159.2 MW, have been put into commercial operation.
— Vietnam Net

Reference exchange rate goes down 3 VND
The State Bank of Vietnam adjusted the reference VND/USD exchange rate down by 3 VND from the day ago to 22,228 VND/USD on February 24.
— Vietnam Plus

Algorithmic trading booms in Asia, but not in Vietnam
Algorithmic trading, algo trading, automated trading, robo trading, and blackbox trading is popular in Asia, and was introduced in Vietnam several years ago.
— Vietnam Net

Technology applications into means of transport custody: Platform to build a smart city
The Hanoitimes – Hanoi People`s Committee has approved Hanoi Parking Spot Ltd.Co. for piloting management and operation technology in public parking spots in the City.
— Hanoi Times

Ambassador to help more New Zealand businesses going to Vietnam
The Hanoitimes – Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has expressed his hope that Ambassador of New Zealand to Vietnam Wendy Irene Matthews will serve as a bridge to help more New Zealand businesses coming to Vietnam to explore investment opportunities.
— Hanoi Times

Promoting cultural activities in walking streets around Hoan Kiem Lake
The Hanoitimes – An array of unique cultural events of provinces and cities nationwide and foreign countries will be organised in the pedestrian space around Hoan Kiem Lake this year, according to Director of Hanoi Department of Culture and Sports To Van Dong.
— Hanoi Times

HCM City enhances mechanisation of agriculture
A programme to boost the mechanisation of agriculture is being carried out in Ho Chi Minh City to foster local agricultural development in a modern, effective and sustainable manner.
— Vietnam Plus

Hanoi announces economic survey
The Hanoi People’s Committee has recently issued its 2017 economic survey plan for the municipality, where it will study the business sector, administrative agencies, individual business units and religious bodies.
— Vietnam Plus

Dong Van looks to become best tourism site in north
Dong Van district in the northern mountainous province of Ha Giang looks to become the most attractive tourism destination in the north by 2020.
— Vietnam Plus

Deputy PM slams foot-dragging on losing firms
Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue on Wednesday slammed the delay in closing down or restructuring losing industry and trade projects, stressing that the Government would not pump money to save them.
— Vietnam News (biz hub)

Taxis claim unfair competition
Taxi firms are calling for fair competition with tech-based rivals Uber and Grab, which have seen a rapid development in the past two years in Viet Nam.
— Vietnam News (biz hub)

Rice exporters rail against storage minimum
Delegates attending a seminar in HCM City on Wednesday urged the Government to amend or revoke a decree on rice exports which they said impedes exports of the grain.
— Vietnam News (biz hub)

 

 

The Asean Morning News Roundup is compiled by the editorial team at AEC News Today: Governance, not government; policies not politics.

 

 

 

 

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