NEWS
HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

The Kingdom of Thailand rejoices at the celebration of Their Majesties the King and Queen’s fifty-third wedding anniversary

Muangsamut Road residents complaining over water shortages

Eco-tourism being promoted in Ban Mae Kampong and Banpong

180 Sato bottles in Lampang

Hill tribes to get their own radio programs

Free red busses for Chiang Mai

Four Nations Buddha image to promote Mekong friendship

Thailand bucks the world GDP downturn

Head: US Department of State closely watching the SARS epidemic

Salween National Park logs under scrutiny

Summer windstorm hit Saraphi District, Chiang Mai

Thai government urged to build Huay Kron-Laos bridge

Ping landscaping and dredging has cost 34 million baht so far

5 million baht hailstorm damage in Lamphun

No SARS in Chiang Mai

B. 600,000 items seized by Mae Sot customs

Ya ba costs go up and addicts turn to glue sniffing

Plans to reduce Songkran road deaths unsuccessful

New form of bus wash?

20 rental cars stolen in Chiang Mai

Drug smugglers warned - don’t try the Nan route

Amphetamines ‘no longer risk to national security’

The Kingdom of Thailand rejoices at the celebration of Their Majesties the King and Queen’s fifty-third wedding anniversary

His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej the Great and Her Majesty Queen Sirikit will celebrate Their 53rdwedding anniversary on Monday, April 28.

His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej and Mom Rajawongse Sirikit Kitayakara were married by Her Majesty Queen Sawang Vadhana, the paternal grandmother of His Majesty, at the Sra Pathum Palace in Bangkok on April 28, 1950.

Mom Rajawongse Sirikit, the daughter of the Thai Ambassador to France Mom Chao Nakkhatmongkol Kitayakara and Mom Luang Bua Sanitwongse, met the soon-to-be-King at the Thai Embassy in Paris in 1948. They were engaged to be married at the Windsor Hotel in Lausanne, Switzerland on July 19, 1949.

They returned to Thailand during the government of Prime Minister Field Marshal Pibul Songkhram and a stunningly beautiful marriage ceremony was held while the Thai military forces formed to honor and salute the Royal Couple.

Following the Royal marriage, His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej the Great ascended the throne, becoming the ninth King of Thailand in the Chakri Dynasty with all the pomp and pageantry befitting a Royal coronation on May 5, 1950.

Their Majesties have four children, HRH Princess Ubolratana, HRH Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn, HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, and HRH Princess Chulabhorn.


Muangsamut Road residents complaining over water shortages

News department

Summer water shortages have riled local residents. According to an official, the Water Works authority has been repairing water pipes following breakages during the past months. “They are very old and deteriorated pipes so they frequently break; however, the authority has been allocated a budget for repair, replacement and improvement work,” he told Chiangmai Mail.

Broken water pipes in front of the Muangsamut Bangkok Bank. A waterworks official told Chiangmai Mail that help is on the way.

Work on improving the water pipes around the city is expected to be finished by September. The water authority is already working along the 69 roads, replacing existing cement pipes that are old and broken. Residents in the meantime will just have to be patient.


Eco-tourism being promoted in Ban Mae Kampong and Banpong

Ampai Kuntawong

The Tourism Authority of Thailand, Chiang Mai office is promoting sustainable eco-tourism of two interesting places - Ban Mae Kampong in San Kamphaeng District and Banpong community in San Sai District to both domestic and foreign tourists this year.

Ban Mae Kampong, located in San Kamphaeng District, is a small community surrounded by mountains and beautiful scenery. Mon Lan is an important mountain for the community for it is the water source of many rivers, such as the Mae Kampong Waterfall, the Tad Moei Waterfall and the mountain provides many trekking tracks for jungle tourists.

Meanwhile, TAT officials told Chiangmai Mail that Banpong community, a village outstanding for its Agro-Ecotourism, is a cooperative between the villagers and Mae Jo University.

There are many interesting activities in both Banpong and Ban Mae Kampang communities, including agricultural product demonstrations, flowering shrubs and decorative plants, walking or bicycling along trekking routes to study nature, and experiencing local life style.


180 Sato bottles in Lampang

Unfortunately they will be empty

Autsadaporn Kamthai

The Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment has swung in behind the first Sato (local liquor) Ceramic Bottle contest to support the economy in Lampang. The contest will be held May 3-7 at Boonyawat School in Lampang.

Anurak Napawan, president of the Federation of Thai Industry, Lampang Province, said the contest would be arranged in accordance with Lampang’s integrated development schemes. The province will use over 1.3 million baht and the Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment has already provided 500,000 baht.

In the school area, there will be a Sato liquor exhibition and 180 Sato bottles in the contest will be on display at the Boonchu Trithong multi-purpose hall. There will also be a fair in the grounds. Demonstration of distilling Sato will also be shown.


Hill tribes to get their own radio programs

Supatatt Dangkrueng

Radio Thailand Chiang Mai is hoping to produce a regular program for hill tribes, broadcasting in their own languages. Bamrung Siriwat, director of Radio Thailand Chiang Mai disclosed that the project’s hill tribes language program, aired through AM 1476 KHz on Radio Thailand, has been popular and has received good feedback from listeners.

The team consists of announcers from each tribe - Hmong, Akha, Yao, Karen, Thai Yai, Lisu and Lahu. The pilot program is being divided into two periods: April 30-May 2 in Chiang Rai, Phayao and Nan provinces and May 7-9 in Lamphun and Chiang Mai provinces.


Free red busses for Chiang Mai

As long as it’s to the Central Airport Plaza

Supatatt Dangkrueng

Central Airport Plaza is providing free public bus transportation for customers who want to go shopping at their department stores. There are five routes, with every one naturally leading to Central Airport Plaza.

The first route runs from Chiang Mai University - Ton Pha Yorm market - Suan Dok - Wat Pra Singh - Muang District Police Station - Chiang Mai Gate - Central Airport Plaza.

The second route runs from Waroros Market - Night Bazaar - Chang Klan - Suriwong Book Center - Chiang Mai Moat - Niyom Panich - Central Airport Plaza.

The third route is Chiang Mai Rajabhat Institute - Chang Puek bus station - Yupparaj Wittayalai School - Three Kings Monument - Chiang Mai Gate - Wua Lai road - Central Airport Plaza.

The fourth route goes from Chiang Mai International Airport direct to Central Airport Plaza.

The last route is from Railway Station - Bus Station - Dara Academy - Prince Royal’s College - Nakorn Ping Bridge - Nawarat Bridge - Nong Hoi - Super Highway - Central Airport Plaza.

Busses will run from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. everyday. Look for red busses with the Central Airport sticker. For more information, contact Central Airport Plaza on 0 5328 1661-2.


Four Nations Buddha image to promote Mekong friendship

Autsadaporn Kamthai

Mongkol Sittilor, head of Chiang Rai Cultural Office, declared that Chiang Rai monks, government offices and residents would together create Four Nations Buddha images for Buddhists in Chiang Rai, Thailand; Tachilek, Burma; Bor Keaw, Laos and Chiang Rung, China, to worship and to strengthen relationships between the neighboring peoples.

Mongkol stated that the Four Nations Buddha images are different in accordance with each nation’s particular style and were designed by Dr. Thawal Dachanee, the national artist, and Chaleomchai Kositpiphat, another famous artist.

The budget used in creating the images has been given by the Government Lottery Office and the Chiang Rai people. The original image will be held at Wat Wiang Parn, Mae Sai. Another Buddha image for worship will also be created in the temple.


Thailand bucks the world GDP downturn

160 million baht to be spent on development of this region

Autsadaporn Kamthai

Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak presided over the opening ceremony of a recent seminar on development strategies for competitive competence in the northern region, organized by the National Economic and Social Development Board, at Imperial Mae Ping Hotel, Chiang Mai.

Somkid stated that the government would focus on development in each region of Thailand since the International Monetary Fund (IMF) announced that during the Iraq war and fears of SARS situation, the Thai GDP for year this year had risen from 3.5% to 4.2% while the world GDP had fallen from 3.7% to 3.2%. This is clear evidence of the reliability of the Thai economy, he said.

As a consequence, he said, the government will spend 160 million baht to develop northern region tourism, transportation and industry under the Greater Mekong Sub-region economic development plan.


Head: US Department of State closely watching the SARS epidemic

Thai preventive situation in line with other countries

Public announcement from the U.S. Department of State Office of the Spokesman

The US Department of State issued the following statement for U.S. citizens regarding the Thai government’s response to the SARS epidemic.

The Royal Thai Government has announced new measures for arriving travelers due to the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) situation. This Public Announcement expires on July 3, 2003.

The Royal Thai Government announced the following protective measures applicable as of April 3, 2003, to passengers arriving at Thai points-of-entry (including international airports in Bang  kok, Chiang Mai, Phuket, Hat Yai, and Ko Samui) from Singapore, Hong Kong, China, Taiwan and Vietnam. These measures apply to Thai nationals and foreigners and do not differentiate between persons originating from the five listed locations and those who merely transited those countries. Thai authorities, including health care professionals, will perform a quarantine inspection of all aircraft arriving from the listed countries. All disembarking passengers and crew are required to fill out a Health Control Document prior to proceeding to quarantine inspection. Passengers and crew transiting Bangkok who elect to remain on the aircraft are exempted from the quarantine inspection.

All persons suspected of SARS infection may be isolated and quarantined for up to 14 days. The Royal Thai Government strongly recommends that Thai travelers arriving from the listed countries quarantine themselves at home for 14 days. The Thai government also urges expatriates residing in Thailand returning from any of the listed countries remain at home for 14 days. Government offices, schools, and private sector businesses are strongly encouraged to permit all employees returning from the listed countries to remain at home for the full 14-day period.

The situation in Thailand is evolving, and we expect that the Thai authorities may alter their procedures as the situation changes.

U.S. citizens resident or traveling in SARS affected areas should closely monitor the website of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at http://www.cdc.gov and the website of the World Health Organization at http://www.who.int for the latest information on SARS.

For further information on travel to Thailand, U.S. citizens should also consult the Department of State’s Consular Information Sheets for Thailand, the Fact Sheet on SARS and the SARS in Asia Public Announcement, all of which are located at http://www.travel.state.gov


Salween National Park logs under scrutiny

Autsadaporn Kamthai

Log smuggling and stealing came under the scrutiny of Newin Chidchob, minister of Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperation, in conjunction with Chatchai Rattanopat, director-general of the Forestry Department, and Suphot Laowansiri, Mae Hong Son governor. They were looking at the results of the suppression of log poaching in Mae Hong Son at the log depots of the Forest Industry Organization, Mae Sa Riang and at Salween National Park.

Minister Newin stated after their inspection that the purpose of their visit was to look at means of carrying the remaining logs in Salween forest out of the area. The Thai army is responsible for extracting logs out of the area and the task should be completed by the end of this year.

Prayoon Tongsirikul, head of Salween National Park, reported that log smuggling and poaching in the area was being carried out by refugees who lived in Thailand, but the problems came after cancellation of government concessions for the allowance for carrying logs from Burma into Thailand.


Summer windstorm hit Saraphi District, Chiang Mai

Autsadaporn Kamthai

In Tambon Saraphi, nine villages were hit by a summer windstorm. 410 longan trees were uprooted and four mushroom nurseries damaged. The storm resulted in 320,000 baht damage; however, Saraphi Tambon Administration Organization (TAO) has already compensated residents for up to for 70% of their losses. House owners were given roofing materials to effect rapid repairs.

In Nong Pheung, 17 longan trees hit by the windstorm were also blown over, and local houses and farms were also damaged. Nong Pheung TAO was also quick to respond, and has already supplied residents in the area with roof tiles and zinc roofing sheets.

Yang Nueng Municipality, led by Manoon Buranapattana, mayor of Yang Nueng District, distributed housing materials for residents in that area, too.

In Nan Province, summer storms hit the Muang district causing damage to 20 houses in Don Num Krok, Num Krok Kao and Thong Luang villages. About 20 longan trees and 50 rai of soybean fields were damaged by the storm. It was estimated that the damage bill in Nan was approximately 500,000 baht from the storm. Nan Governor Suwat Choksuwattanakul has already given his residents some assistance.


Thai government urged to build Huay Kron-Laos bridge

But who will benefit?

Supatatt Dangkrueng

The Economic Quadrangle development project is urging the Thai government to spend 500 million baht to build a bridge crossing the Mekong River at the Huay Kron checkpoint to connect Thailand with Laos.

The Office of Special Area Development and Neighboring Economic Cooperation has proposed the government provide the budget of 500 million baht to construct the bridge and other facilities which are expected to foster trade and investment in both countries.

Damrong Sangkaweelert, the deputy director of the office said that the Economic Quadrangle project in the Greater Mekong Sub-region (GMS) is progressing well. In the latest developments, officials looked at locations for trade, investment and tourism and the results appeared to show that the best way was the economic link between Thailand and Laos, at the Huay Kron checkpoint in Nan Province connecting with Pak Baeng in Laos.

Damrong said that the Pak Baeng checkpoint is on the Mekong River connecting to Luang Phra Bang City, so tourists could cruise by boat from Nan directly to Luang Phra Bang. When the bridge is constructed, it is expected that it would boost tourism in Nan and neighboring provinces with Laos.

However, at present, the Lao PDR government has not allowed Pak Baeng border to be used as a permanent trade border checkpoint and tourists could not enter Laos at this point. The Ministry of Thai Foreign Affairs will discuss this project further with the Lao government.

Traders and investors in the northern region expect that there would be opportunities for export and import valued at 10,000 million baht annually.


Ping landscaping and dredging has cost 34 million baht so far

Government kicks in another 42 million

By Autsadaporn Kamthai

Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra authorized 42 million baht to go to the Regional Harbor Department, Chiang Mai Office to dredge the Ping River from Tambon Don Kaew, Mae Rim District to Saraphi District, Chiang Mai and Lamphun provinces covering a distance of more than 10 km. The excavation work is being done to prevent flooding and since December last year, the office has spent over 34 million baht on dredging.

Suchin Rattanasatien, chief of the Regional Harbor Department in Chiang Mai, accompanied by Anant Onsaeng, an official from the Regional Harbor Department Chiang Mai office, inspected the Ping River banks and the landscaping. The work runs from Diamond Hotel to Wat Ban Tor, Tambon Pa Tun and will provide spacious banks for the people and restaurant owners who live close to the river. The office also adjusted the riverbanks and landscaping in front of Chiang Mai Municipality Office to provide a white sandbank for Chiang Mai residents.

An officer from the Harbor Department, Chiang Mai Office said that riverbank development in some areas faces another difficulty caused by landowners who are not allowing them to do drainage in their areas, but the office has already begun taking legal action.


5 million baht hailstorm damage in Lamphun

Autsadaporn Kamthai

On April 16, hailstorms hit many tambons in Lamphun including Tambon Ton Thong, Pra Tu Pa, Nong Chang Kuen, U-Mong, Muang Nga, Nai Muang and Wiang Yong leaving severe damage in their wake.

The storms produced high winds and hail, de-roofing many houses. Electricity supply was interrupted as electricity poles and trees were uprooted. Some trees fell on parked cars as well as residents’ properties. It was estimated that the storm caused 5 million baht damages to the Muang district with much of the costs being borne by residents in the area.

By the morning of April 17, some 500 residents whose houses were damaged by the storm submitted their petition to Lamphun Governor Tawat Satiannam, to ask for assistance. The governor said he wished to show his sympathy with them and would undertake to assist where he could.

The Social Development and Welfare Office, Lamphun Provincial Administration Organization, and associated organizations have already examined damaged residential areas and have indicated their intention to help.


No SARS in Chiang Mai

But effects are hitting the tourism industry

Phitsanu Thepthong and Autsadaporn Kamthai

SARS is hitting the Chiang Mai tourism industry, according to Vorapong Muchaotai, president of the Thai Hotels Association, Northern Chapter. He told Chiangmai Mail that the SARS epidemic would affect the tourism industry through June, July and August, a period that brings concern to all sides. “We are very worried about it because so far there have been no hotel bookings from travel agencies abroad,” he said.

THA Northern Chapter President Vorapong Muchaotai said that the SARS epidemic would affect the tourism industry through June, July and August.

The occupancy rate for Chiang Mai hotels was only 60% last week, lower than expected, particularly since last year’s rate was 80-90%. This resulted in many hotels discounting their room rates and running special promotions to help attract more visitors and guests.

Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak said the tourism authority attributed the downturn to the spread of SARS in nearby countries, rather than in Thailand, but this was still scaring tourists. However, Vorapong said that the hotel industry’s only current benefits are from seminars and meetings organized by the government sector.

It had been hoped that Songkran would help the industry but hotels and resorts reported occupancy rates of 50% for those located outside the city, while hotels in the city still only had 60 - 70% occupancy, which was again down when compared to the past two years.

Meanwhile, the Tourism Authority of Thailand, Chiang Mai Office Director Chalermsak Suranant also accepted that the spread of SARS had adversely affected the tourism industry, but was still satisfied with revenues generated from tourists and visitors. He said more than 100 million baht was generated per day during Songkran, but admitted that the figures for both tourists and income had dropped from the previous years.

It was also reported that the tourism industry in the North was approaching crisis level, and tourism-related organizations are attempting to solve this problem by launching tourism promotion plans linking destinations in the North and the South. The plan is to open new tourist spots, especially for Thai domestic tourists and visitors, to promote the “Thais tour Thailand” campaign. This is expected to be launched next month, according to the Chiang Mai Tourist Business Association.

Khajornwit Boonsom, managing director of North Wheel Rent A Car Limited Company, said that SARS has affected tourism related business such as rental car service companies in Chiang Mai. The government guarantee regarding the SARS situation in Thailand was too late leading up to the Songkran festival in Chiang Mai. The reservation rate for rental cars was also decreased and in fact was the lowest in 15 years.


B. 600,000 items seized by Mae Sot customs

Donated to educational and government institutes

Supatatt Dangkrueng

Suchart Junwatcharakorn, head of Mae Sot Customs, last week donated 600,000 baht worth of goods seized by Mae Sot customs to local educational institutes and organizations.

The property given out included 230 kilograms of precious stones (B. 246,100) to Supphawittaya School, planks of wood (B. 98,979) to another 8 government schools, 17 microscopes (B. 149,886) to Mae Sot public health office, and 20 chain saws (B. 109,085) to the 3rd Border Patrol police headquarters. All of the goods had been seized at the border and forfeited by the original importers.

Suchart also said that in the second quarter budget - year 2003, that the three major exports from Thailand were spices valued at B. 109 million, zinc plated roofing iron (BH. 80 million) and printed cotton (B. 57 million). Imports were cows (B. 32 million), fish (B. 18 million) and dried fish maw (B. 11 million).

Mae Sot Customs has collected B. 6.6 million plus additional fees of B. 1.79 million. This is less than in previous years because of the restriction on wood imported from Burma to Thailand.


Ya ba costs go up and addicts turn to glue sniffing

Ampai Kuntawong

Many ya ba drug addicts have turned into glue sniffing addicts, said Wichien Noonrowd, Chiang Mai Provincial Public Relations chief.

Since the government’s War on Drugs campaign began, the price of speed pills has risen to 200-300 baht a tablet from less than 100 baht previously, but this causes many young methamphetamine addicts to turn to glue sniffing.

Wichien said the Cabinet had previously proposed measures to prevent inhalation abuse, which were entered in statute in 1981, covering solvent producers, peddlers, traders, and users. He stated that all solvents must have warnings on the containers. Youths under the age of 18 are also not allowed to purchase glue or solvents, and there is an ongoing campaign to educate people on the health dangers of sniffing glue or solvents.

Traders and producers who disregard the regulations will be punished, with a 20,000 baht fine and 2 years in jail for failure to attach warning messages or for selling solvent to under age youths.


Plans to reduce Songkran road deaths unsuccessful

Chiang Rai numbers up 25%

Autsadaporn Kamthai

More people died this year during the past Songkran festival in Chiang Rai, according to Chiang Rai Traffic Safety Operations Center. Chiang Mai numbers remained much the same as 2002.

Road Traffic Safety Operations Centers in Chiang Rai reported that the that there were 980 people involved in traffic accidents, 711 of whom were male and 269 female, resulting in 19 deaths between April 12 - 16. Figures in Chiang Mai were 1,459 road accidents and 12 deaths during April 11 - 15.

Breakdown of the official figures would indicate that some of the reasons for the appalling statistics in Chiang Rai were motorcycle riders not wearing helmets and excessive use of alcohol. Of the road accidents reported, 774 motorcycle riders were not wearing helmets and 633 were under the influence of alcohol during the Songkran festival. Most accidents also occurred on roads in rural areas.

The day after Songkran, Nikorn Charmnong, minister of transport and communications, said at the opening ceremony of the Drive Safety campaign that although the government had launched measures to prevent road accidents during the festival, Chiang Mai’s rate of road accidents and deaths were comparable to last year’s celebration when 15 died.

Minister Nikorn also suggested that there should be a road traffic court only dealing with road accidents and he would support the establishment of such a court.


New form of bus wash?

At about 4.30 a.m. on April 18, this bus somehow managed to find its way into the Chiang Mai moat in front of Sompetch Market. Apparently only the bus driver was on board at the time, and he was reported to have “narrowly escaped death” as the bus slowly sank into the moat. Luckily, no fatalities were reported.


20 rental cars stolen in Chiang Mai

Autsadaporn Kamthai

At a conference held by the Chiang Mai Committees on Tourism Promotion and Development, Khajornwit Boonsom, the committee treasurer of the Chiang Mai Tourist Business Association, who is also the owner of North Wheels Rent A Car Co Ltd., announced that there is a big problem with rental cars being stolen, and asked the conference for help in finding solutions.

Khajornwit said that at present the owners of many rental car services are facing the problem of stolen rental cars, especially luxurious and expensive cars. Since December last year, about 20 cars have been stolen, valued at approximately 20 million baht.

“It is difficult for the rental company owners to notify the police when a rental car is stolen since the police deny the car is actually stolen but is just behind in the installment payments,” he said.

Moreover, the owners also complained that they cannot call for any compensation from their insurance companies because the insurance companies deny responsibility in these cases, saying it is outside the conditions set by their insurance contracts.

To solve the problem, the conference gave the police, insurance companies and associated organizations one month to find solutions and review the law that limits legal action.


Drug smugglers warned - don’t try the Nan route

Supatatt Dangkrueng

Following the drug suppression methods launched by the government, many areas in Chiang Rai, Mae Hong Son and Tak provinces appear to now be free from ya ba smuggling. It is expected drug dealers will now change to other drug trafficking routes, including the border area in Nan Province.

However, Nan Governor Suwat Chokesuwatthanasakul declared that he was not worried about this because since the war on drugs started there has been much cooperation from government and private sectors to deal with drug problems. “As you can see in many communities, people are working together to give important information to the authorities and assist in setting up the rehabilitation program in villages. It is easier for all concerned to help the get rid of drug operations,” he said.

Governor Suwat said the officers in the meantime would work both day and night to stop drug trafficking. He believes that his communities in the province are stronger and clever enough to tackle the ya ba (speed pill) problem.


Amphetamines ‘no longer risk to national security’

Thailand hailed a milestone on April 16 in its fight against drugs when the Office of the Narcotics Control Board (ONCB) announced its recognition that amphetamines were now merely a criminal problem rather than a threat to national security.

Teeraphat Santimataneedol, ONCB deputy secretary-general, said that the nation’s amphetamines problem had eased considerably, and could now be regarded as simply a small-scale criminal problem within the society, no more threatening than the drugs problems faced by Singapore or Malaysia.

Teeraphat said, “This reduction has come because the government declared its war on drugs less than three months ago. Drugs users and dealers in certain provinces across the country, such as Chiang Mai in the north, have virtually halted all activity due to the stringency of the government’s drugs suppression measures. This tough stance has pushed up the average price of amphetamine tablets to 300 baht each with some areas recording prices as high as 400-500 baht per tablet, and in several areas amphetamines are extremely difficult to get hold of.”

According to the narcotics board, most of the amphetamines still on sale are old ones which had entered the system before the government launched its anti-drugs campaign at the beginning of February.

Teeraphat said that border sources indicate that drug traders across the border were continuing to stockpile drugs, and were waiting to assess the government’s next moves before trying to release them on to the market. He also conceded that amphetamines were still being traded in Bangkok’s Klong Toey slum area, and that former amphetamines addicts were turning to solvent abuse in increasing numbers.

Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra has ordered all agencies involved in the fight against drugs to review the success of the government’s campaign before the end of November, in order that the information can be handed over to His Majesty the King to mark His birthday on December 5.