Promoting Thailand’s favorable image in the media and overseas
Chiang Mai Governor Suriya Prasatbuntitya (center)
and Acting Permanent Secretary for the Office of the Prime Minister M.L. Panadda
Diskul (4th right) join members of Chiang Mai media for a group photo.
Former Chiang Mai Governor and current Permanent Secretary of the Office of the
Prime Minister M.L. Panadda Diskul joined the Public Relations Department Region
3 (PRD 3) in welcoming foreign Consuls and the press at the Chiang Mai
Historical Center on June 25, 2014 to discuss the promotion of a favorable image
of Thailand to the world.
Chiang Mai Governor Suriya Prasatbuntitya welcomed Permanent Secretary M.L.
Panadda Diskul and the Director of PRD Region 3 Mrs. Thanthip Thongngamkam, the
foreign consuls and members of the media to the event before noting that Chiang
Mai had been mentioned on Fox News as one of the top places in the world for
retirees citing its low cost of living, top notch medical care, services and
natural beauties. The Governor noted that the PRD Region 3 has been in charge of
promoting Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai and Mae Hong Son since 2007 and had worked hard
to show the world the charms of Northern Thailand.
Helping Hands Radio DJs on NBT’s radio station join
Acting Permanent Secretary for the Office of the Prime Minister M.L. Panadda
Diskul (front 2nd right), Director of PRD Region 3 Mrs. Thanthip Thongngamkam
(front 1st right) and Governor Suriya Prasatbuntitya (center) before the
He added that Chiang Mai has 19 consulates; 15 honorary consulates, three
consulate-generals and one consulate showing the international nature of the
province, and that the province was preparing to act as the northern hub for the
upcoming ASEAN community along with GMS and BIMSTEC countries.
Then Acting Permanent Secretary for the Office of the Prime Minister M.L.
Panadda Diskul took the stage and thanked everyone for coming, welcoming old
friends and new. He spoke emotionally on his time as governor in Chiang Mai
saying that he had come to feel Chiang Mai was the second home in his heart. He
also spoke on the recent political changes in Thailand saying that this is not
about color or status about doing what is best for the country. He called on the
media and the foreign consuls to join hands in promoting the good image of
Thailand and Chiang Mai specifically, of its beautiful scenery, Lanna culture
and friendly welcoming people.
The Director of Region 3 PRD then took the stage and reported on tourism in
Chiang Mai and the work the PRD had done to promote the North before everyone
enjoyed a traditional Long Mae Ping performance by students from the Chiang Mai
College of Dramatic Arts and then group photos with the many organizations that
attended, including media and DJs from the English language Helping Hands Radio
program that airs on NBT radio at 93.25 FM.
Chiang Mai; New shining road or hopeless deadend?”
Seminar held on economic growth
Is Chiang Mai the shining new road in the property and economic sector
or a hopeless deadend was the question posed at a recent seminar that
was by the Chiang Mai Provincial government, Than Setthakit newspaper,
the Chiang Mai Chamber of Commerce, the Public Relations Department
Region 3 and other agencies at Centara Duangtawan Hotel on June 26,
Chiang Mai Governor Suriya Prasatbuntitya presided over the opening of
the event where he was joined by Chalermchart Nakarungkul, President of
CMCC and Jessada Weerapong, president of Than Setthakit newspaper.
Somsak Wongpanyathaworn, Senior Vice President of the Bank of Thailand
and other economic experts discussed Thailand’s economic growth and real
estate while Nattakit Tangpoonsinthana, Executive Vice President of
Marketing of Central Pattana Public Company Limited and Jumnong Buakai,
Managing Director of Agency For Real Estate Affair Co., Ltd. led the
discussion on the property sector in Chiang Mai.
The Governor said the seminar was held to provide useful information and
encourage entrepreneurs on the future of the economy. The Governor noted
that the fast pace of change and customers’ behavior which follows
trends quickly was a key problem businesspeople faced. Chiang Mai has
unique culture and traditions and a beautiful natural environment along
with a good infrastructure and ease of living making it a high demand
destination and one of the most interesting provinces for investment as
it sees continued growth.
The governor added that the government was currently in re-organization
to not only return the country’s happiness but also purge the system of
corruption and selfishness.
Wedding Fair season
kicks off at Le Meridien
The wedding gowns featured a lot of lace,
mesh and petticoats at the Urban Love, Your Day, Your Way wedding fair
at Le Meridien Chiang Mai.
The start of the rainy season is also the start of the Wedding Fair
season as hotels around Chiang Mai present fashion shows, food and other
events to promote Chiang Mai as a wedding destination. Le Meriden Hotel
Chiang Mai held their lavish wedding fair; “Urban Love, Your Day, Your
Way” where a fashion show featuring wedding gowns and bridesmaids
dresses in non-traditional colors and designs took center stage. There
was also a make-up demonstration, spa facial treatment demonstration and
cooking demonstration as well as elaborately decorated tables and a
pergola with a giant wedding cake.
Lucky registrants won prizes including trips to the Sheraton Maldives,
Le Meridien Samui and spa treatments at Le Meridien Chiang Mai. General
Manager of Le Meridien Chiang Mai Greg Anderson took the stage to
welcome everyone to the event, with the cool season not far off now is
the time to book your wedding venue with Le Meridien Chiang Mai offering
the complete package for peace of mind.
Enchanted Wedding Fair 2014 at Holiday Inn Chiang Mai
Lavish gowns were part of the fashion show at
the Enchanted Wedding Fair at the Holiday Inn Chiang Mai.
The weekend of the 4th was a busy one for engaged couples as many
hotels held Wedding Fairs and Holiday Inn joined in the Wedding Fair season
with a lavish “Enchanted Wedding Fair” featuring spectacular wedding gowns,
champagne towers, delicious cakes and canapés.
Held on July 4, 2014 at the Grand Nanta Ballroom at the Holiday Inn Chiang
Mai, the event was opened by Jirarat Meengam, Assistant Director of Tourism
Authority Thailand office in Chiang Mai who noted that Chiang Mai is a
popular destination for Thai couples for cool season weddings. She was
welcomed by General Manager of the Holiday Inn Stella Jacobs who noted that
many foreign couples also tie the knot in Chiang Mai and with an increasing
number of Chinese also looking to Chiang Mai for their weddings.
There were many booths offering beauty clinics, jewelry, wedding planners
and studios and participants who booked any service had a chance to win many
General Manager Stella Jacobs
and TAT Assistant Director Jirarat Meengam (center) toast with staff and
organizers to launch the fair.
The Miracle of Love
at Chiang Mai Grandview Hotel
Chiang Mai Grandview Hotel celebrated the Miracle of Love
at their Wedding Fair that was held from July 4 -6, 2014 at the Chiang Mai
Grandview Hotel where professional wedding organizers, designers and studios
presented luxuriously designed gowns, flower displays and more. Leading
wedding studios and planners were on hand to advise interested couples such
as Koo Rak Professional Wedding Studio, Chansong Wedding Planner & Studio,
House of Beauty and others.
Three month long Amazing
Thailand Grand Sale in Chiang Mai
Deputy Governor Charoenrit Sa-nguansat leads the
launch of Chiang Mai’s own Amazing Thailand Grand Sale. (Photo by Nopniwat
Thailand’s annual huge nationwide sale kicked off in Chiang Mai as part of
the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) Amazing Thailand Grand Sale 2014
(ATGS) scheduled during June 15 – September 30 to boost tourism business and
increase the money in circulation, in seven key target areas including
Chiang Mai. The Amazing Thailand Grand Sale @ Chiang Mai persuades shoppers
and tourists to purchase local products and services in the province and is
one of 16 of its kind held annually by the TAT in conjunction with Visa
International, department stores, shops and trade hubs.
The event which offers shoppers discounts and privileges and Chiang Mai; one
of seven locations including Bangkok, Phuket, Pattaya, Hua Hin, and Koh
Samui, saw Deputy Governor Charoenrit Sa-nguansat preside over the opening
ceremony on June 24, 2014 at Central Festival Chiang Mai. There was a
shopping contest between ten teams of local media and an auction of goods to
raise funds to purchase robes and other items for the Phansa season for
monks at Wat Nam Tong, Chiang Mai.
Director of TAT Chiang Mai office Wisoot Buachum said that last year foreign
tourists spent over 2,000 million baht on their Visa cards nationwide while
this year’s amount was expected to reach approximately 2,400 million baht.
There are 91 local businesses in Chiang Mai taking part and more than 15,000
throughout the country. He also noted that the event would exactly help
stimulate local tourism businesses in this green season.
Chiang Mai’s own Rocket Festival kicks off the rainy season
Teams launch their home –made all natural
rockets up into the skies to bring the rains. (Photo by Harm de Vries)
Chiang Mai’s own Rocket Festivals are not the lavish grand widely promoted
affair as in Yasothon but they herald the start of the rainy season
nonetheless as farmers and villagers craft rockets and launchers from
traditional all natural materials including bamboo and hemp rope. The
rockets are about 2.5 meters long and take off from very long, tall ramps, a
long stick is used to facilitate launch, attached the end of the rocket.
Held on July 5 and 6, this festival took place in San Kamphaeng near Huai
Supporters of each team of rocketeers banged drums and waved signs and
banners to encourage the group setting up their rocket to launch. The
highest and farthest flying rockets win praise but it is the spectacular
failures exploding too soon that get the most attention. The winners of this
year’s festival get the chance to start off the festival next year to bring
The launchpad is also made of all natural
materials and each team takes turns launching their rockets. (Photo by Harm
Payap University offers degree
in Hospitality Management
Chiang Mai Mail reporters
Payap University is now offering a Bachelor’s degree in Business
Administration specializing in Hospitality Industry Management at their
International College as part of their ongoing efforts to support labor
mobility in tourism in the upcoming AEC.
Dr. Somboon Panyakom, Dean of the International College noted that Thailand
is pushing forward investment and commercial freedom among the 10 member
countries of ASEAN. Businesspeople and staff need to prepare for the effects
of the upcoming ASEAN Economic Community that will see increased labor
mobility, especially in the tourism sector as well as multinational
investment and changes in economic and socio-cultural situations.
The International College, Payap University launched the Bachelor of
Business Administration in Hospitality Industry Management focusing on
developing expert staff that can analyze and solve problems in the
hospitality industry. The program will enable enrollees in conducting
research to develop their community and country. Graduates from the program
will be able to work in multicultural teams and will be educated to maintain
international standards, strengthening hospitality industries in the country
to give them an advantage against the competition.
Dr. Pal Clinic now open
in Chiang Mai Land
Dr. Jaspal Ahuja has more than 40 years of
experience and takes a practical and pragmatic approach to treatment, his
new clinic just opened in Chiang Mai Land.
Dr. Jaspal Ahuja, or better known as Dr. Pal, is as known for his friendly
bedside manner as he is to his practical approach to treatment. With over
forty years of medical experience in Chiang Mai, he is one of the original
founders of Chang Puak Hospital and more recently Chiang Mai Polyclinic on
Moon Muang Road.
Dr. Pal launched his new clinic, both in general practice and Ayurvedic
medicine in Chiang Mai Land, just before the exit to Mahidol Road.
Dr. Jaspal Ahuja said that “I am not a doctor that only dispenses to
patient, I always provide patients information to understand their illness
and urge them to live healthy lifestyles because the medicine is only a part
of the treatment. Nobody understands the patient’s body as well as the
patient does himself, so he or she needs to listen to what their bodies are
saying. When my patients have a specific condition then I always recommend
them to the best specialist doctors.. I want my patients to be healthy and
happy. I am very happy with my new clinic in Chiang Mai Land. It has easy
access to Mahidol Road and good parking. “
Dr. Pal’s Clinic is located at 422/51, Chiang Mai Land Road, Chang Klan Sub
district, Chiang Mai, open from 9.00 a.m. to noon, and 2.00 p.m. to 6.00
p.m. every day except Sunday, Tel. 094-7587879.
hosts MACRO 2014
IUPC World Polymer Congress in Chiang Mai
The Chiang Mai International Convention and
Exhibition Center (CMICE) hosted 1,500 scientists and experts for the MACRO
2014 on July 7, 2014.
Chiang Mai Mail reporters
The Chiang Mai International Convention and Exhibition Center (CMICE) was
the scene of some 1,500 national and international visitors on July 7 when
the Chemical Society of Thailand, the Polymer Society of Thailand and the
Faculty of Science, Chiang Mai University hosted the IUPC World Polymer
Congress, also known as MACRO 2014.
The event saw scientists from 49 countries take part in the event that drew
chemists, scientists, academics, students and teachers take the opportunity
to meet and exchange ideas and information. Assoc. Prof. Dr. Supawan
Tantayanon, President of the Chemical Society of Thailand said that the CST
under the support of Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau joined the bid
to host the IUPAC World Polymer Congress, or MACRO 2014 of the International
Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC). Chiang Mai won out over 70
Dr. Sarawut Srisakun, Director of Pinkanakorn Development Agency said that
CMICE will propel Chiang Mai as a national and international convention and
exhibition center and will stimulate the economy of the province for the
long term. The event was expected to boost tourism to the province during
the low season and showcase CMICE in supporting international conventions.
Around 80 million baht was expected to be injected into the local economy
due to the convention.
Who is Your Investment
Advisor Accountable Too?
By Don Freeman
In the world of providing financial planning and investment advisory
services, just about everyone claims to be or tries to pass them self off as
an expert looking out for your best interest. But just who is an investment
advisor really serving and more importantly, who is watching over him or
her? For expatriates, asking such questions is important because once you
leave your home country, the world of investment advisory becomes rather
murky and trustworthy advice can be hard to come by.
When I first relocated to Thailand from the United States, I would receive
phone calls about offshore investment products - just like you have probably
received. The difference between the calls I would receive and the calls
many of you have probably answered was that the callers wanted me to sell
their offshore investment products targeted towards expatriates in exchange
for commissions of as much as 5%.
However, I cannot accept such commissions because I operate under the
fiduciary standard rather than the suitability standard. Under the fiduciary
standard, I am required to put my own interests below those of my clients
and I am required to provide information that is as accurate or complete as
possible while avoiding conflicts of interest. And rather than earn
commissions paid by investment firms for selling their financial products, I
earn my income by charging a small annual fee that is the percentage of the
amount of assets you have me managing - meaning I have an incentive to grow
your investment account while avoiding both risky investments and excessive
trading to generate myself commissions.
In contrast, most other investment advisors, especially those targeting
expatriates, operate under the suitability standard where they are not
required to give you the best and most objective advice possible and are
largely being compensated by commission. These investment advisors are
encouraged to trade you in and out of investments (in order to generate
themselves commissions) and they are most likely receiving a commission when
they sell you certain types of financial products - especially offshore
investment products that come with high fees.
However and no matter what standard an investment advisor operates under,
truly professional investment advisors should be willing to disclose to you
any relationships, compensation, other incentives or potential conflicts of
interests that could impact their ability to provide you with objective
advice. In that way, you can evaluate whether their advice is truly
independent (and in your best interest) or not.
If you are wondering who regulates or licenses most offshore investment
advisors who provide investment advice to expatriates, the answer is
probably going to be no-one.
Of course, there will be some accountability for offshore investment
advisors who are somehow affiliated with a large international insurance or
brokerage firm or other financial institution as who they are affiliated
with will have an interest in protecting their reputation. However,
unscrupulous expatriate investment advisors or firms targeting other
expatriates rather than locals can easily operate above and beyond any laws
or regulations in local Southeast Asian countries - meaning its the wild
west and buyer beware for expatriates.
Given that’s the case, you need to ask potential investment advisors (or
someone cold calling you to sell you an offshore investment product) what
licenses they hold and what jurisdictions they are accountable to. Moreover,
don’t just take their word for it as the regulatory authorities in most
countries should have websites where you can search for the names of
individual licensed investment advisors or their firms.
In my case, I am licensed by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
who hold me accountable to stateside fiduciary standards and other
regulations. I am also a Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) and I have
passed the Series 65 Investment Advisor Law Exam.
Don Freeman is president of Freeman Capital Management, a Registered
Investment Advisor with the US Securities Exchange Commission (SEC), based
in Phuket, Thailand. He has over 15 years experience and provides personal
financial planning and wealth management to expatriates. Specializing in UK
and US pension transfers. Call 089-970-5795 or email:
Centara Duangtawan’s chef to present “Taste of Indian Cuisine”
Centara Duangtawan Hotel’s master chef Vijay
Singh has launched the new “Taste of Indian Cuisine” with a special a la
carte menu offering such varied Indian dishes as Chicken Kadai, Dal Tadka,
Chicken Tikka Masala and of course naan, papadoms, tandoori and more. The
chef will be presenting a daily menu as well offering specialties of the
day. Chef Singh will be offering this new menu for lunch and dinner daily at
the Marco Polo Restaurant on the ground floor of the Centara Duangtawan
World Gingers Expo to highlight Gingers in Thai culture
HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn in special lecture
Zingiber or Ginger plant with emerging flower
Chiang Mai Mail reporters
HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn will be providing a special lecture on
Gingers in Thai Culture at the 7th International Symposium on the family
Zingiberaceae and the World Gingers Expo that will be held from August 17 –
23, 2014 at the Chiang Mai International Convention & Exhibition Center
(CMICE). The Princess will preside over the opening ceremony and then give
the special lecture on gingers.
The event is being held in honor of HM Queen Sirikit, mother of the
protection of biological diversity and in honor of HRH Princess Maha Chakri
Sirindhorn who celebrated her 60th birthday this year. The event is being
held to provide information and support research and development into the
very important plants of this family. Additionally the event will provide
information on the knowledge and use of Thai local plants on a global scale.
An exhibition will be held at the event with local products, ginger contests
and ginger food products as well as field trips to the Gingers Garden at the
Queen Sirikit Botanic Garden, to Doi Suthep – Pui National Park and to other
agricultural sites in Chiang Mai and Lamphun for interested parties.