Thailand morning news for January 28

Thailand morning news for January 28

Thailand morning newsFIFA asks Thai premier to release Bahraini soccer player
The Thai government has been asked by FIFA’s leadership to release a Bahraini soccer player who is in detention while embroiled in extradition proceedings despite having refugee status in Australia.
— Pattaya Mail

Ratchaburi province hit by smog for the first time
The western province of Ratchaburi is the latest province to be affected by PM2.5 dust particles to the extent that the provincial public disaster prevention and mitigation office has issued…
— Thai PBS World

Regional entrepreneurs begin mentoring course ahead of field trials
A programme to mentor 100 Asean entrepreneurs ahead of the pilot field deployment of sustainable programmes that provide long term community and economic benefits gotten underway at Thailand’s Chulalongkorn University earlier this week.
— AEC News Today

IOC BACKS FIFA’S CALLS FOR THAILAND TO RELEASE BAHRAINI PLAYER
The International Olympic Committee has backed FIFA’s calls for a Bahraini soccer player to be allowed to return to Australia from Thailand where he is detention while being pursued for extradition by Bahrain.
— Khaosod English

Nation cynical about election
The Election Commission (EC) is being urged to ensure fair and transparent elections in the wake of extremely low public confidence in the integrity of the process in the run-up to the March 24 contest.
— Bangkok Post

Cross-border trade misses target, up 6%
Thailand fetched 1.4 trillion baht in 2018 from all cross-border trade, including transit trade, up 6% from the year before, but the figure fell short of the target.
— Bangkok Post (annoying pop-ups)

Eight saved after speedboat capsizes off Koh Lanta coast
Six tourists and two boat crew have been saved after a speedboat capsized two kilometers offshore from Koh Lanta in Krabi today. Officials at the Krabi Tourist Assistance Centre were notified of the incident at 11am. Navy and national park officers headed to the scene to find a speedboat which had capsized.
— The Thaiger

Haze lingers despite drop in PM2.5 levels
The air quality in Bangkok and its vicinity is still ranked as “unhealthy”, despite a reported significant drop in the level of ultra-fine PM2.5 pollutants across the capital Sunday.
— Bangkok Post

Greenpeace names 10 areas with alarming pollution
AT LEAST 10 suburbs in nine Thai provinces with alarming PM2.5 pollution levels have been called out by pollution watchdog Greenpeace.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

EC chairman admits poll results may not be announced by May 9
The Election Commission is not certain that it will be able to announce the election results within May 9 as it earlier pledged, EC chairman Itthiporn Boonprakong said today.
— Thai PBS World

EEC gets 400,000 rai for development
As much as 400,000 rai will be designated for industrial areas within the government’s flagship Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC).
— Bangkok Post

‘Sex cult’ tantric yoga retreat in Thailand reopens after rape scandal
The world’s biggest tantric yoga school, which closed after multiple women alleged rape and sexual assault, has reopened with the accused leader back in charge and amid accusations that management suppressed an investigation into the abuse.
— South China Morning Post

Airing their grievances
Smiles in Bangkok are beginning to fade as fears of the perilous PM2.5 particles prompt people to cover their faces with dust masks or risk a host of illnesses.
— Bangkok Post

Resort faces charges over dead corals
Senior management at a resort on Koh Racha Yai will face a charge of having coral illegally on the resort premises and for damaging reefs, the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR) Phuket office has confirmed.
— The Phuket News

Two bombs hit Narathiwat
Two home-made bombs went off in this southern province on Saturday – one in Cho Airong and the other in Tak Bai district – but caused no casualties, police said.
— Bangkok Post

Deputy PM says Malaysia can learn from Thailand on caring for neglected children
Malaysia’s Deputy PM Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail has been visiting Thailand and says that her government can learn something from the methods implemented in Thailand to tackle the issue of neglected children and babies and those without citizenships.
— The Thaiger

41 spots in Bangkok, nearby provinces found to have unsafe levels of polluted air
Forty-one areas in Bangkok and nearby provinces were found to have unsafe levels of PM2.5 – airborne particulates 2.5 microns in diameter and smaller, The Pollution Control Department reported on Saturday morning.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Pheu Thai urges people to monitor Prayut, 4 ministers
The Pheu Thai party has called for the people — as well as all monitoring agencies — to keep an eye on Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and four cabinet ministers who are key members of the Palang Pracharath Party (PPRP), to see if they are using government time and other resources for political gain over other political parties.
— Bangkok Post (annoying pop-ups)

Thai tycoon’s stock scandal puts Bangkok Dusit Medical in a bind
Thailand’s Bangkok Dusit Medical Services, one of Southeast Asia’s biggest hospital networks, is facing business risks on two fronts after the company’s scandal-hit founder resigned and the government moved to regulate treatment fees.
— Nikkei Asian Review (paywall)

‘Breach of the office of president’: Players’ union attacks AFC supremo over Hakeem Al-Araibi
The Australian players’ union has called for Asian Football Confederation president Sheikh Salman Ibrahim Al-Khalifa to be scratched from the organisation’s election ballot this year, claiming he hasn’t done anything to try and secure the release of Australian footballer Hakeem Al-Araibi from prison in Thailand.
— The Sydney Morning Herald

IS THAILAND PIVOTING AWAY FROM THE US WITH CHINESE ARMS DEALS?
Thailand’s military junta is pushing ahead with arms deals even as a long-promised election day looms, prompting critics to decry a lack of transparency in the procurement process.
— South China Morning Post

Thailand, Vietnam agree to develop 5-year cooperation framework
Thailand and Vietnam have agreed to draft a 5-year strategic cooperation framework to boost mutual trade and investment.
— NBT World (video)

Thai pop idol condemned for Nazi swastika T-shirt
A member of Thailand’s most popular all-girl band has apologised for wearing a shirt with a Nazi flag featuring a swastika, after her TV appearance drew “shock and dismay” from the Israeli embassy Saturday.
— The Sun Daily

Running on empty: Officials float ideas to counter low water-supply reserves
Large areas of Cherng Talay, mostly concentrated in the Bang Tao area, went on water rations this week in an attempt to prevent what water remains in Bang Neow Dum reservoir from running out before the annual rains return in May.
— The Phuket News

Pattaya faces a condo oversupply
Last year, Pattaya saw 10,239 condominium units launched with a combined worth of 55 billion bHT (USD1.7 billion), a huge jump from JUST 2,192 units in 2017. Phattarachai Taweewong, the Senior Manager of Collier’s research department, told Bangkok Post that a large portion of the homes remain unsold due to the massive supply last year.
— The Thaiger

Promoting digital from the bottom up
Chai Wutiwiwatchai is the first director of the National Electronics and Computer Technology Center (Nectec) to be promoted not from a deputy director position, but from the top job at a research unit.
— Bangkok Post

Australian cave divers Harris and Challen honored Australian of the Year
Two Australian cave divers who helped in the dramatic rescue of the 12 Wild Boar footballers and their football coach from Tham Luang cave in Chiang Rai last July have been jointly named Australian of the year 2019.
— Thai PBS World

Public Health Ministry orders monitoring of groups vulnerable to PM2.5
The Ministry of Public Health has ordered relevant authorities to closely monitor and care for groups vulnerable to the persistent haze in the greater Bangkok area.
— NBT World (video)

Thailand’s 20-year national power generation plan revealed
The latest meeting of Thailand’s National Energy Policy Council (NEPC) has approved the 2018-2037 national power generation plan, in accordance with the 20-year national strategy.
— Vietnam Plus

UTCC: Election campaign spending could generate 30-50 billion baht
A new study predicts that election campaigns are likely to generate 30-50 billion baht for the economy, following the Election Commission’s confirmation of the general election date, March 24th.
— NBT World (video)

Frosty Photos: Tourists (still) flocking to snap pics as temps at Thailand’s highest peak drop to -2 Celsius
While Bangkok continues to deal with health-threatening air pollution, visitors to Northern Thailand are rejoicing at experiencing the tiniest sliver of “winter.”
— Coconuts (paywall)

Phuket Opinion: Failing the water quality test
The water at Patong Beach this week turned green again. This time they called it “seaweed”, just like they did more than 10 years ago.
— The Phuket News

Activists rally govt over water projects
A group of residents protesting against the government’s four water projects in the South Sunday insisted on rallying at Government House today, despite the government’s assurance that it won’t press ahead with these projects without public consensus on them.
— Bangkok Post

Facebook poll reveals expats in Thailand are not optimistic about the future
A simple online poll conducted by Thaivisa on their Facebook page shows that 75% of respondents think expatriate life in Thailand will be ‘worse’ in five years than it is now. According to the poll, only 24% held out hope that life for expats would actually improve by 2024.
— The Thaiger

Sea Turtle found dead on Chumpon beach, choked on plastics
A large green turtle has been found dead on Chumphon’s Bang Nam Jeud Beach, believed to have died from plastic waste it ingested.
— The Thaiger

Bangkok pollution takes temporary break
Bangkok’s air pollution eased significantly on Sunday morning, though the health threat posed by PM2.5 lingers.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

20-year national power generation plan revealed
The latest meeting of the National Energy Policy Council (NEPC) has approved the 2018-2037 national power generation plan in accordance with its 20-year national strategy. Energy Minister Siri Jirapongphan noted that the average selling price within the 20-year period of this plan is in the range of 3.50 – 3.63 baht per unit.
— Pattaya Mail

Politicians reach for the sky
Politicians from major parties presented their policies about the economy on Friday including those aimed at tackling poverty, boosting the domestic bourse by more than 50% to 2,500 points within four years and providing state welfare benefits.
— Bangkok Post

Wonders with water
ICONSIAM, Bangkok’s massive waterfront mega-mall, has unveiled a spectacular new attraction – the longest water attraction in Southeast Asia.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

Pheu Thai urges people to monitor Prayut, 4 ministers
The Pheu Thai party has called for the people — as well as all monitoring agencies — to keep an eye on Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and four cabinet ministers who are key members of the Palang Pracharath Party (PPRP), to see if they are using government time and other resources for political gain over other political parties.
— Bangkok Post

Cashless spending during Chinese New Year to result in 5% VAT refund
The Ministry of Finance has decided to return 5 percent of Value Added Tax (VAT) charges to those spending via debit card or Prompt Pay QR Codes this Chinese New Year in a further push towards a cashless society.
— NBT World (video)

Auto title loan firms face new rules
The Bank of Thailand expects the amended regulations governing auto title loans, including a cap on interest rates and practical guidelines for operators, to take effect next month.
— Bangkok Post (annoying pop-ups)

NCPO restrict social media and advertising in election campaign
The world’s media is starting to report on the shackles put on political parties campaigning for the Thai general election, scheduled for March 24.
— The Thaiger

Tax refunds to only be transferred electronically
The Spokesman for the Revenue Department, Pinsai Suraswadi, said the tax refunds in 2018 will only be transferred electronically.
— NNT

More borders, more problems
Last week’s murder and dismemberment of a South Korean man should teach the police a lesson — that criminals can use Thailand’s porous natural border to get in and out of the country undetected with ease.
— Bangkok Post

Thailand detains foreigners suspected of crime
The Thai government has launched a crackdown on foreigners suspected of various crimes, media reports said on Friday.
— Infosurhoy

Colliers warns of Pattaya condo glut
New condo supply in Pattaya being launched this year should not exceed 5,000 units as more than 12,000 units remain unsold, the highest since 2015, according to a property consultant.
— Bangkok Post (annoying pop-ups)

Thailand becomes world’s No 1 exporter of sweet corns
Thailand has become the world’s number one exporter of sweet corns and related products for 10 consecutive years, said the Department of Foreign Trade.
— Vietnam Plus

Greenpeace calls for statutory measure against PM2.5
Greenpeace Thailand has called on the Pollution Control Department to devise a law to fight particulate matter with a diameter of 2.5 micrograms per cubic meter or less (PM2.5).
— NBT World (video)

Majority expect rampant vote-buying in election: Nida Poll
A large majority of people are enthusiastic about the forthcoming election, but believe vote-buying will be rampant during the campaign, according to the result of an opinion survey by the National Institute of Development Administration, or Nida Poll.
— Bangkok Post (annoying pop-ups)

App to allow parents to track children’s school buses
Four schools in Udon Thani are preparing to join a smart bus project which will adopt mobile technology aimed at reducing deadly accidents.
— Bangkok Post (annoying pop-ups)

ICONSIAM: Wonders with water #AsiaNewsNetwork
ICONSIAM, Bangkok’s massive waterfront mega-mall, has unveiled a spectacular new attraction – the longest water attraction in Southeast Asia.
— Eleven/ The Nation

BMA launches educational air safety campaign for students
The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) has launched an educational air safety campaign, after several schools were forced to suspend classes due to the perennial smog afflicting the capital and its surrounding provinces.
— NBT World (video)

NLA to end all meetings one week before election
The National Legislative Assembly (NLA) said it would end all meetings one week prior to the national polls.
— NBT World (video)

Songkhla holds technology training for local entrepreneurs
Songkhla province offered technology and innovation training to local businesses on Saturday to prepare them to take part in THAIFEX-World of Food Asia 2019.
— NNT

Politicians reach for the sky
Politicians from major parties presented their policies about the economy on Friday including those aimed at tackling poverty, boosting the domestic bourse by more than 50% to 2,500 points within four years and providing state welfare benefits.
— Bangkok Post (annoying pop-ups)

Deputy Agriculture Minister hands out stipend to Khon Kaen rubber farmers
The Deputy Agriculture and Cooperatives Minister has handed out stipend to Khon Kaen rubber farmers.
— NBT World (video)

ICER visits Chon Buri, hopes to reform non-formal education
The Independent Committee for Education Reform (ICER) on Saturday observed non-formal and informal education in Chon Buri province.
— NNT

Committee appointed to review prices of medical supplies and services
The Ministry of Commerce has formed a committee tasked with reviewing the prices of medical supplies and services at private hospitals.
— NBT World (video)

Thailand Today 040: How architectural design could deal with PM2.5 pollution crisis?
The Thai government has ordered urgent measures and coordination among related agencies to tackle acute smog problems in Bangkok as overall Bangkok’s air quality has average PM2.5 level of 51 to 90 micrograms, which are above Thailand’s safe limit of 50 micrograms.
— NBT World (video)

Thailand Today 037: Thai students won the snow-sculpting competition for 10th consecutive year.
Every year, in northeastern China’s Heilongjiang province, the city of Harbin hosts the Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival, which features massive ice and snow sculptures and attracts millions of visitors.
— NBT World (video)

Ministry of Villages Seek Comparative Study of Village Heads in Southeast Asia
Indonesia Minister of Villages, Development of Disadvantaged Regions and Transmigration Eko Putro Sandjojo has received a visit from the Ambassador of Thailand to Indonesia, Mr. H. Songphol Sukchan at his office on Thursday (1/24/2019).
— Netral News

Two hunters arrested with wild boar parts
KANCHANABURI: Two hunters were arrested with parts of wild boars in Srinakarin Dam National Park in Si Sawat district on Saturday night.
— Bangkok Post

NCPO restrict social media and advertising in election campaign
“Following the confirmation that Thailand’s much-postponed election would finally be held on 24 March – the first election since the military seized power in a bloodless coup in 2014 – the election commission released strict guidelines on political campaigning.”
— The Thaiger

Auto title loan firms face new rules
The Bank of Thailand expects the amended regulations governing auto title loans, including a cap on interest rates and practical guidelines for operators, to take effect next month.
— Bangkok Post

Hafele allots B700m for warehouse and IT
Hafele Thailand Ltd, the local unit of the German furniture fittings maker, will invest 700 million baht in 2019 to build a new warehouse on Bang Na-Trat Road, renovate its showroom and upgrade the IT system to improve working processes.
— Bangkok Post

 

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Find our previous morning news feature photos in the AEC News Today Morning News Feature Photos gallery where you will find a pictorial display of daily life throughout the Asean Economic Community (AEC).

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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