Thailand Morning News For March 1

Thailand Morning News For March 1

Thailand morning newsThailand again ‘thinking’ about joining TPP
Thailand is considering applying to join the 11-nation trade deal that was initiated by ex-president Obama but abandoned by President Donald Trump on his first day in office.
— Bangkok Post

Thailand sets up technological center for B&R Initiative
The National Research Council of Thailand (NRCT) together with Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) announced Tuesday the establishment of an international center for the Digital Belt and Road (DBAR) project.
— The Nation

PM calls for action if corruption allegations confirmed
The Prime Minister has insisted that action be taken against any officials found to be engaging in graft after receiving a briefing from the Public Sector Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC), which has established a fact-finding committee given 90 days to complete its work.
— NNT

BoT outlook for exports perking up
Thailand’s export growth is likely to be moderately above the Bank of Thailand’s 4% estimate for this year in light of the robust pace in January and its bright outlook, while the purchasing power of low-income earners in January remained weak, says a senior official at the central bank.
— Bangkok Post

SEC closes in on digital currency rules
THE Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) plans to introduce a regulatory framework governing investment in digital currencies, including the fast-moving trend for initial coin offerings (ICO).
— The Nation

PM calls for end to ‘sex tourism image’
Thailand has to change its image of being a sex tourism destination, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said Tuesday.
— Bangkok Post

Mega projects boost budget disbursement
State-enterprises’ disbursement of investment budget surged 47 per cent year-on-year to Bt21.11 billion in January due to acceleration of mega projects including Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand (MRTA)’s MRT projects – Orange and Green Lines and Thai Airways International Plc’s aircraft procurement, said Ekniti Nitithanprapas, director-general of State Enterprise Policy Office (Sepo).
— The Nation

Thai gas exploration company gets a big win in Africa
Thailand’s PTT Exploration & Production and its partners in a Mozambique liquefied natural gas processing plant have signed a 15-year agreement to sell LNG to a French power company.
— Nikkei Asian Review (metered paywall)

Rayong Smart City Development seminar held to promote EEC
Economic and administrative agencies in Rayong province organized a seminar on the Rayong Smart City Development.
— NNT

Police to take action against firms leasing signals to call-center scammers
Police and NBTC will take action against seven firms allegedly leasing signals to call-center scammers.
— NNT

Growth improves but domestic demand not strong enough: BoT
Thailand’s economy gained further traction on external demand but domestic demand was not “sufficiently strong”, and monetary policy has to remain accommodative to boost activity, minutes of the central bank’s last policy meeting showed on Wednesday.
— Bangkok Post

BCPG readies Bt10 bn to boost green energy output
BCPG Plc, an alternative energy arm of Bangchak Corporation Plc, plans to spend up to Bt10 billion this year on an upgrade that will boost its production capacity by 200 megawatts (MW) as part of a focus on Asia-Pacific countries, the company’s president Bundit Sapianchai said yesterday.
— The Nation

Jasmine rice shortage is hitting home, while price rising
Thailand is now running shortage of jasmine rice as latest survey in 23 rice cultivation provinces in the North and Northeast showed rice production is over two million tons below target.
— Thai PBS

Revenue collection rises 4% in first four months of Fiscal 2018
The Ministry of Finance says revenue collection in the first four months of Fiscal 2018 (October- January) has soared to 730 billion baht.
— Thai PBS

Thailand January coal imports up by 22pct
Platts reported that Thailand imported nearly 1.6 million tonne of coal in January, up 21.6% from the same month in 2017.
— SteelGuru

Mercedes-Benz to open Thai battery factory
Due to come into operation later this year, sources said the plant will be able to serve 5,000 Thai-assembled Mercedes cars annually. However, production capacity could easily be doubled should the market warrant for it.
— Bangkok Post

Report claims poisonous leak at Phichit gold mine
Akara disputes study as international arbitration proceeds, with govt accused of expropriation.
— The Nation (annoying popups)

Thai Police, NGO Rescue Lao and Cambodian Workers Trafficked For Labor
Thai police working together with labor rights advocates freed 19 migrant workers, some still in their teens, from an ice factory early this month after one of the migrants escaped and described to police the conditions in which they were being held.
— RFA

Thai juice firm Malee branches into functional condiments as part of health drive
Beverage company Malee is to launch its first condiment — Vintico Coconut Vinegar — in Thailand in April as it seeks to diversify into premium health and functional food products.
— FoodNavigator-Asia

Sikorsky Authorizes Thai Aviation Services as Customer Support Center in Thailand
Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin company (NYSE: LMT), has authorized Thai Aviation Services to operate as the first Sikorsky Customer Support Center in Thailand.
— AviationPros

SANSIRI POSTS DROP IN 2017 REVENUE, NET PROFIT
Listed property firm Sansiri Plc announced total revenue of Bt31.75 billion and a net profit of Bt2.82 billion last year, dropping 7.67 per cent and 16.56 per cent respectively from year 2016, according to the company’s report to the Stock Exchange of Thailand yesterday.
— The Nation

Egat union protests against energy minister’s decision
The electricity labour union demonstrated on Wednesday against Energy Minister Siri Jirapongphan’s decision to revoke the environmental impact assessment studies for two contentious new coal-fired power plants.
— Bangkok Post

Big data panel to direct country’s digital transition
The government has set up a committee for big data, data centres and cloud computing to steer all 20 ministries through the state-led digital transformation.
— Bangkok Post

Phuket turns to technology to fix overcrowding, pollution
Phuket may be one of the most popular tourist destinations in Thailand, but the high demand for the island’s attractions comes at a high price – traffic jams, pollution and crime. Can turning Phuket into a smart city be the solution?
— Channel NewsAsia (video) (annoying popups)

Thailand makes top 10 in social media use
Thailand ranks in the world’s top 10 for social media usage, with video becoming more popular and entertainment the topic most talked about on social media.
— Bangkok Post

C-ASEAN Hub for ASEAN entrepreneurs in Bangkok
With a population of more than 600 million, ASEAN is an important economic force in ASIA. In order to promote ASEAN business leadership and strengthen its competitiveness, a social enterprise called “C-ASEAN”, aimed at being a hub of ASEAN entrepreneurs, has been founded. Today, we find out more in this report.
— News Today (video)

75 foreigners detained for illegal stay, working
Seventy-five foreigners have been detained in police raids across the country aimed at overstayers, people working illegally and crime.
— Bangkok Post

German tourist arrested for falsely claiming there is a bomb in his baggage
A 70-year German tourist is facing a 5-year jailterm and/or a maximum fine of 200,000 baht for making a hoax on board a plane that there is a bomb in his baggage.
— Thai PBS

Songkran 2018 to be 5 day National Holiday
Songkran 2018 has been announced by Prime Minister General Prayut Chan O-Cha to be a five day national holiday from April 12th to April 16th. This is a one day extension from the prior years.
— The Pattaya News

Bangkok plays host to ASEAN City Council Meeting 2018
City council members from across the ASEAN region have gathered in Bangkok to participate in the ASEAN City Council Meeting 2018.
— News Today (video)

CAT union files suit against DE Ministry
CAT Telecom’s labour union on Tuesday filed a lawsuit against the Digital Economy and Society (DE) Ministry in the Central Administrative Court to scrap the process of creating two new companies from CAT…
— Bangkok Post

Investors snap up Thai hotels
Hotel investment transaction volume in Thailand hit an all-time high last year, totalling THB17 billion, led by some high-profile transactions.
— TTR Weekly

Japan’s Rejection of a Shinkansen Deal in Thailand a Rational Choice
Japan’s diplomatic ambition to compete with China in maintaining its foothold in Thailand seems soon to fizzle out following the failure to reach a deal on a high-speed train project between the Japanese and Thai governments.
— Frontera

Phuket rental companies to be fined if found renting to unlicenced drivers
Phuket Provincial Police Deputy Commander Col Sermpan Sirikong has confirmed that vehicle rental operators who allow drivers to rent a vehicle without the required driving licence must be fined B2,000.
— The Phuket News

Soldiers intimidate villagers for urging authorities to stop harassment
Soldiers have forced villagers in Phayao to cancel their plan to submit a petition, which urges the authorities to stop prosecuting them for violating the junta’s order.
— Prachatai English

Phuket Smart Bus kicks off
The first route of the Phuket Smart Bus has been launched today (February 28) connecting Phuket International Airport all the way to the south of the island – Rawai Beach.
— Phuket Gazette

Man arrested for crushing his employee to death with his pickup truck
An employer who deliberately crushed his employee to death with his pickup truck has been arrested by police in Narathiwat’s Su-ngai Kolok district on murder charge.
— Thai PBS

 

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Thailand morning news by AEC News Today is your one stop source for Thailand news on matters of governance and policies affecting Asean business communities. It is published M-F by AEC News Today: Governance, not government; policies not politics.

 

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John Le Fevre

Thailand editor at AEC News Today

John is an Australian national with more than 40 years experience as a journalist, photographer, videographer, and copy editor.

He has spent extensive periods of time working in Africa and throughout Southeast Asia, with stints in the Middle East, the USA, and England.

He has covered major world events including Operation Desert Shield/ Storm, the 1991 pillage in Zaire, the 1994 Rwanda genocide, the 1999 East Timor independence unrest, the 2004 Asian tsunami, and the 2009, 2010, and 2014 Bangkok political protests.

In 1995 he was a Walkley Award finalist, the highest awards in Australian journalism, for his coverage of the 1995 Zaire (now Democratic Republic of Congo) Ebola outbreak.

Prior to AEC News Today he was the deputy editor and Thailand and Greater Mekong Sub-region editor for The Establishment Post, predecessor of Asean Today.

In the mid-80s and early 90s he owned JLF Promotions, the largest above and below the line marketing and PR firm servicing the high-technology industry in Australia. It was sold in 1995.

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