Thailand morning news for January 7

Thailand morning news for January 7

Thailand morning newsClaims of Saudi abduction at Suvarnabhumi *Update #3
An 18-year-old woman claims that she is currently being held against her will in a Bangkok hotel room after being ‘abducted’ from the arrival gate by Saudi Arabia diplomatic staff.
— AEC News Today

Thailand resumes flights, ferry services as tropical storm slows
Thailand resumed flights on Saturday to its southern provinces, as the first tropical storm in 30 years slowed and headed into the Andaman Sea, leaving behind a trail of homes damaged by fallen trees or blown-off roofs, and disrupted power networks.
— Reuters

AI and big data to reign in Thailand’s galloping HIV infection rate
The use of artificial intelligence (AI) and big data offers untapped opportunities for Thailand.
— AEC News Today

Air quality in and around Bangkok worsens, posing health threats
What appeared to be like morning fog in and around Bangkok this morning was not actually fog but dust particles which pollution control experts said are worsening air quality in and around the metropolitan areas.
— Thai PBS World

Pro-poll activists hold peaceful rally against elction delays
About 100 pro-poll activists organised a peaceful rally at Victory Monument on Sunday to show their opposition to any attempt to defer the general election.
— Bangkok Post

Patience, says Prayuth to frustrated students
As student outrage about the election delay pushed the Twitter hashtag “Delayed Again. You Mother******” into the national and global top 10, the Prime Minister has responded, but students continue to channel their frustration.
— Prachatai English

SME D Bank offering low-interest loans to storm-hit businesses
The Small and Medium Enterprise Development Bank of Thailand (SME D Bank) is introducing a loan scheme to rehabilitate businesses battered by Tropical Storm Pabuk.

NLA president warns critics not to blame coronation for possible delay of election
National Legislative Assembly President Pornpetch Wichitworachai has warned critics to refrain from blaming the coronation ceremony for causing a potential delay of the election.
— Thai PBS World

Thailand: Allow Fleeing Saudi Woman to Seek Refuge
Thailand authorities should immediately halt the planned deportation of a Saudi woman who says she is fleeing domestic abuse and fears for her safety if forcibly returned to Saudi Arabia, Human Rights Watch said today.
— Human Rights Watch (statement)

Guarded reaction to possible poll delay
Key political players have reacted guardedly on the possibility of election delay, whereas March 10, March 17 and March 24 have emerged as potential new dates to replace February 24.
— Thai PBS World

Helping the medicine go down
High prices for medicines and medical services at private hospitals have been draining money from consumers’ pockets and are increasingly challenging the healthcare sector in Thailand.
— Bangkok Post

CCI falls 1.1 points in December
The Consumer Confidence Index (CCI) was recorded at 79.4 points in December 2018, a drop of 1.1 points on the previous month.
— NBT World (video)

Haze returns to city as long holiday ends
Air pollution caused by hazardous particulate dust matter is set to worsen again in the capital, the Pollution Control Department (PCD) has warned.
— Bangkok Post

Recycling gets nod under ‘circular economy’ projects
As Asian countries face a future of ever-more waste being generated, they are considering a shift to the “circular economy” to drive sustainable growth for their nation.
— The Nation (very annoying popups)

In the wake of Pabuk, a media storm is brewing
Now the actual storm has passed, a media storm is brewing over two key issues – tourists claiming they had little knowledge about the approaching storm and local tour operators, especially in the Andaman region, who say the media coverage was ‘hyped’ and overblown.
— The Thaiger

Thailand Denies Holding Saudi Teenager Against Will at Bangkok Airport
Thai immigration authorities denied late Sunday that they had detained a Saudi teenager who arrived earlier in the day on a flight from Kuwait and who claimed her life was in peril if she were forced to return home.
— Benar News

PM to visit storm-ravaged Nakhon Si Thammarat
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and his entourage will fly to Nakhon Si Thammarat on Monday to see the damage caused by tropical storm Pabuk — now downgraded to a low-pressure area — and visit storm-hit people, prime minister’s deputy secretary-general for political affairs Puttipong Punnakanta said on Sunday.
— Bangkok Post

Ministry of Energy holds seminar on 2019 policies
The Ministry of Energy has organized a seminar on policy communications for its personnel nationwide, especially on conveying energy policy facts to local stakeholders.
— NBT World (video)

Football: India post shock 4-1 win over Thailand at Asian Cup
Sunil Chhetri overtook Lionel Messi in international goals as cricket-mad India stunned Thailand 4-1 at the Asian Cup football tournament on Sunday (Jan 6), the veteran striker scoring twice in their Group A opener to surpass the Barcelona superstar.
— Channel NewsAsia

Southern Thai Peace Talks: Malaysian Broker Says Violence Can End in 2 Years
After their first official meeting in Bangkok on Friday, the Malaysian facilitator of southern Thai peace talks and Thailand’s negotiating team said they hoped to end the separatist conflict within two years but granting regional independence was off the table.
— Benar News

Tourists surge back to Chalong Pier and out to the islands
Chalong Pier has been back to normal today following the lifting of the ban on boats leaving port last night.
— The Thaiger

Explainer: New rules for the House of Representatives
It could hold the key to the balance of power in Thailand: the new constitution has changed the way members of the House of Representatives are elected.
— Bangkok Post

Thailand visa online to be launched in Beijing next month
The e-visa system which is jointly launched by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in cooperation with Kasikorn Bank will facilitate visa application for Chinese tourists, and will ease the crowdedness at Thai consular offices where Chinese tourists normally visit to apply for visa.

Commerce Ministry monitoring supply of goods in storm-hit areas
The Ministry of Commerce is monitoring the supply of everyday products in all areas affected by Tropical Storm Pabuk (ปาบึก), which has downgraded into a depression and is heading toward the -Andaman Sea.
— NBT World (video)

Weakened ‘Pabuk’ Moves to Andaman; Effects to be Felt in Bangkok
The tropical storm that left at least two people dead and hundreds of homes damaged has moved over the western coast of Thailand where its ferocity has dropped, the national weather service said Saturday.
— Khaosod English

Tour bus overturns; 6 killed, 50 injured
Six passengers – a man, four women and a baby girl – were killed and about 50 others injured when a double-decker tour bus heading from Roi-et’s Phanom Phrai district to Bangkok overturned in Khlong Luang district early Sunday, police said.
— Bangkok Post

Democrat Party picks 346 election candidates
The executive committee of the Democrat Party has approved the nomination of candidates to contest in 346 of the 350 constituencies nationwide in the forthcoming general election, party spokesman Thana Chiravinij said on Sunday.
— Bangkok Post

Govt stresses commitment to ending informal loans
The government has reiterated its commitment to putting an end to the issue of informal loans or non-conventional debt, which it sees as an adversity faced by the poor and many agriculturists.
— Pattaya Mail

B450bn budget deficit repeats
The state budget for fiscal 2020 is set at 3.2 trillion baht, up 200 billion baht from fiscal 2019 ending Sept 30, 2019, with a budget deficit of 450 billion baht equal to that of the previous fiscal year.
— Bangkok Post

K-Research predicts mild car export growth in 2019
Kasikorn Research Center (K-Research) forecasts Thailand’s car exports in 2019 to grow by 1-4% to 1.15-1.18 million units as the country faces myriad negative factors from Europe and North America.
— Bangkok Post

Surin Pitsuwan Foundation to promote education, diplomacy and human security
The eldest son of Surin Pitsuwan is setting up a foundation named after the late former ASEAN secretary general to help promote education, diplomacy and human security.
— Thai PBS World

Political woes add to consumer blues
Consumer sentiment fell for a fourth straight month in December as the public fretted over the impact of the deepening US-China trade war and uncertainty surrounding Thailand’s political situation.
— Bangkok Post

Academic argues for better rice policy, long-term focus
The government that will be elected this year is being urged to focus more on R&D and long-term solutions for rice management policy and steer clear from pledging or price guarantee schemes.
— Bangkok Post

13 students and 4 teachers saved by firemen from burning school building
Thirteen students and four teachers of the famous Dhepsirin high school in Bangkok were trapped in a burning building on the campus before being rescued safely by firemen.
— Thai PBS World



Feature photo Craig McNicol

This week’s Thailand morning news feature photo depicts the effects of Tropical Storm Pabuk on the Pier at Makathanee Resort on Koh Mak


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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