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Foreign Minister: Thailand to continue tackling human-trafficking problem in spite of U.S. assessment

BANGKOK, 15 April 2015 (NNT) The Foreign Minister has assured that Thailand will continue to fight human-trafficking no matter how the U.S. will assess the country’s efforts.

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Gen. Tanasak Patimapragorn said that Thailand has already sent its latest report on the progress on the tackling of human-trafficking problems to the U.S. at the end of March.

Gen. Tanasak said that the report was in response to the U.S. government’s earlier downgrade of the country’s ranking on its annual Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report to Tier 3 — the lowest level shared by such countries as North Korea, Cuba and Iran.

He assured that, no matter how the latest assessment will turn out, Thailand is determined to do its best to solve this problem for humanitarian and national security reasons.

The Foreign Minister added that, after the downgrade, Thailand has inquired assistance from the U.S. to send its specialist to help solve the problem effectively although such a request is yet to be responded.


Government spokesman: Appointment of new US ambassador, a good signal for Thailand.

BANGKOK, 15 April 2015 (NNT) A government spokesman has shared his opinion related to the confirmed appointment of a new ambassador from the United States to Thailand.

Weerachon Sukondhapatipak, a government spokesman, said that the report by AP news agency that President Barack Obama has appointed Glyn Davies as the new ambassador to Thailand is a good signal for the country.

Mr. Davies has served as a point man for the diplomatic response to North Korea’s nuclear program between 2012 and 2014 under President Obama’s administration.

His appointment succeeded the former U.S. Ambassador to Thailand Kristy Kenney who vacated the post last November.

Maj. Gen. Weerachon said that the appointment of Mr. Davies shows the U.S. has recognized the importance of the international relations with Thailand as Washington could have lowered the level of diplomatic ties with any country it deems as problematic by not appointing an ambassador at all.


CDC assures focus on anti-corruption laws under new charter.

 BANGKOK, 15 April 2015 (NNT) The Constitution Drafting Committee has assured the public of one of its focus to enact laws to fight corruption effectively under the new charter.

CDC member Paiboon Nititawan, who also chairs the sub-committee on the drafting of the anti-corruption law, said that the sub-committee has already agreed with the designation of the Anti-Corruption Commission to only investigate all grafts related to senior politicians and civil servants while similar cases against the others will be handled by other agencies.

Mr. Paiboon added that the committee also decided that the NACC team at each ministry will be responsible for the initial probe before submitting the case to the main anti-graft agency and that civil servants who are to report their wealth will no longer need to do so directly with the NACC, but only make all information available when needed.

The CDC will discuss with the National Reform Council’s committee in charge of anti-corruption about the setting up of a court to handle all graft-related cases after the NRC completes its review of the first draft of the new charter during April 20-26.


Nano-finance fraud schemes ongoing despite official campaign having yet to start.

BANGKOK, 15 April 2015 (NNT) Fraud schemes under the guise of nano-finance loan provision are already ongoing despite the fact that not a single entity has been granted permission to provide the loans, the Ministry of Finance has said.

According to Fiscal Policy Office Director Krisda Chinavicharana, in his capacity as spokesperson to the Ministry of Finance, fraudsters were claiming that they had been granted permits from the finance ministry to engage in nano-financing. These individuals were providing loans at rates higher than those allowed by law and also allowing savers to deposit money in a manner similar to banks.

The spokesman said the Ministry of Finance would like the public to be aware that no nano-financing permits have been issued so far, and that nano-financing entities are not allowed to accept deposits from savers.

The government's nano-finance project, currently under development, is aimed at solving the problem of loan sharks and unregulated lending, and increasing grassroots people's access to funds. Under the scheme, local businesses and establishments will be allowed to lend no more than 100,000 baht to each borrower.


Surat Thani Cooperative reopening today after Friday night blaze

SURAT THANI, 15 April 2015 (NNT) Surat Thani Cooperative is officially reopening today after having closed down in response to the fire at its warehouse on Friday night.

Phisan Mopraman, manager of the cooperative, said on Tuesday that goods have been readied for sale to customers, most of whom wholesalers. He said the quick reopening was needed to avoid regular customers running out of items to resell.

Cooperative staff will be selling merchandise at Building no. 1, which was unaffected by the fire that devastated the warehouse and nearby shops, as well as the cooperative's food center.

Officials from the Department of Public Works and Town & Country Planning will begin removing some of the debris from the sites of fire today, to allow evidence collection to be expanded.

In the meantime, police are keeping an eye on vehicles, baggage and suspicious-looking individuals at piers in Surat Thani in the wake of the cooperative fire and the car bomb at the province's Central Festival department store.


251 killed and 2,532 injured in road accidents from April 9-13

BANGKOK, 15 April 2015 (NNT) 251 persons were killed and 2,532 injured by road accidents over the course of five days, from April 9-13, despite authorities' efforts to minimize losses incurred from the accidents during the Songkran travel period.

2,406 road accidents have been reported during the past five days. The main causes of the accidents were driving under the influence and over speeding. Roi Et province currently has the most fatalities from road accidents, at 11 deaths. Nakhon Si Thammarat has seen the highest number of accidents, at 94, and also the highest number of injuries, at 98.

The government's road accidents prevention and mitigation center has told local administrative organizations to maintain their 'community checkpoints' that have been erected to encourage safe driving among locals within communities, despite the Songkran holidays coming to an end and many holidaymakers having already started journeying back to Bangkok.

Officials manning community checkpoints and regular checkpoints on roads have been told to stringently enforce laws associated with drunken driving, speeding and failure to wear helmets. This year, state officials and civil servants are to face disciplinary action for failure to observe traffic law, in addition to normal penalties.


PM lauds Thais for being good host to foreigners during Songkran

BANGKOK, 14 April 2015 (NNT) Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has expressed appreciation to the Thai people for their hospitality towards foreign visitors coming to celebrate Songkran in Thailand this year.

The Prime Minister announced that he would like to thank the Thai people for their cooperation in being a good host to foreign tourists and portraying the beauty of Thai New Year traditions. He said such warm hospitality of Thais has left a great impression on foreigners while estimating the country’s tourism income this Songkran holiday at more than 7.5 billion baht.

Gen Prayut also pointed out that, besides tourism operators, food vendors and transport service providers across the country are also enjoying lucrative business during Songkran.

The Prime Minister’s statement was made after the Ministry of Tourism and Sports revealed that over 470,000 foreign tourists had arrived in the Kingdom for this year’s Songkran Festival, increasing 39 percent compared to the same period of last year.


Crowded zones targeted for stricter police operations during Songkran

BANGKOK, 14 April 2015 (NNT) Deputy Police Chief Pol Gen Ruengsak Jarit-ake has ordered police officers to use stricter security measures in crowded areas especially in water-splashing zones, shopping malls and markets to ensure public safety during Songkran Festival 2015. His order came as he inspected today police operations at ASIATIQUE The Riverfront shopping center and piers along the Chao Phraya River.

He emphasized to all police officers on duty to be mindful while working to prevent bad incidents from happening. He suggested that fast-moving units should be ready to reach callers as soon as possible while private companies should add more security staff and regularly check the operation of CCTVs in their offices.

As for solutions to the problem of illegal motorcycle racing on roads, Pol Gen Ruengsak revealed he had ordered local police to actively detect teenagers' movement in order to prevent their gathering on roads while ad hoc units must be on standby and ready to mobilize in emergency.


OBEC to make a blacklist of ill-behaved teachers

BANGKOK, 15 April 2015, (NNT) The Office of Basic Education Commission (OBEC) is making a blacklist of ill-behaved teachers and other personnel who violate students' rights. The office said the list will be part of an internal inspection system while giving an assurance that OBEC itself would lend a hand investigating institutional staff members suspected of such violations.

Mr.Thipa Bhawangkanantha, OBEC’s Head of the Child Protection Center, explained several complaints have been made on the matter, saying that his center is responsible for aiding and protecting child victims, while investigating such allegations.

He said, in order to speed up the Child Protection Center’s work, the blacklist will be established. Mr. Thipa elaborated that the list would consist of the names of personnel from the education sector who have already been warned about violating students' rights. He believes that initially the list will be used to examine a teacher’s qualifications, adding that schools can also request a background check of any particular instructor at the OBEC.


Exhibition in honor of Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn opened at PRD

BANGKOK, 9 April 2015 (NNT) – A commemorative exhibition for Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn has been launched at the Public Relations Department (PRD) on the occasion of the Princess’s fifth cycle birthday anniversary. Minister to the Prime Minister’s Office ML Panadda Diskul presided over the opening of the exhibition, which is being organized by the PRD. With the objective to mark the 60th birthday of Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn on April 2 this year, the minister said it is a great honor for the PRD to have an opportunity to play host to such an auspicious event. Visitors to the exhibition will be enlightened about Her Royal Highness’s benevolence for the Thai people through countless royal activities and projects. Photographs of the Princess while on royal duties are on display while visitors can also partake in the signing of well-wishing messages for Her Royal Highness. Among those accompanying ML Panadda at the opening ceremony were PRD Director-General Apinan Juntarungsri as well as department executives and civil servants. The exhibition is taking place in front of the PRD Conference Hall and will continue through April 17.


PRD holds water-pouring ceremony for Songkran tradition

BANGKOK, 9 April 2015 (NNT) - The Public Relations Department (PRD) today held the water-pouring ceremony, to ask for blessings from senior officials for 2015 Songkran festival, in keep with the 12 Core Values.

The PRD Director-General Apinan Juntarungsri has led the executives and officials of the PRD to participate the water-pouring ceremony at the PRD Auditorium, to show respect and ask for blessings from former Directors-General of PRD, namely the 24th PRD Director-General Arun Ngamdee, the 25th PRD Director-General Chunt Poonsombut, the 26th PRD Director-General Bangern Musikapong, 29th PRD Director-General Sompong Wisuthipat, the 32nd PRD Director-General Dussadee Sinjermsiri, 33rd PRD Director-General Pramote Rattawinit, and the 35th PRD Director-General Kritsanaporn Sermpanich.

The PRD Director-General said that the ceremony held was part of the Songkran tradition, which is hosted by the PRD every year. This event reflects the gratitude towards the seniors which is a part of the 12 Core Value, which is an important aspect of Thai culture.

The former PRD Director-General Arun Ngamdee said that he was impressed by this event, that it allowed him to reconnect with officials whom he had worked with. He said he would receive a warm welcome every time he comes back to this place.

He has also wished all PRD staff to have good health, create work unity and to work hard for the prosperity of the organization.


Commerce Ministry urges private sector to buy palm oil

BANGKOK, 9 April 2015 (NNT) – The Ministry of Commerce has asked the private sector to help relieve financial problems of oil palm growers by purchasing their produce.

During a meeting with oil palm growers and processors, Commerce Minister General Chatchai Sarikulya called on private operators to buy fresh palm oil from small-scale agriculturists owning farming areas of no more than 50 rai, to enable this group of farmers to cope with the drop in product price led by the rapid expansion of oil palm farming.

General Chatchai did not specify the rate at which operators should pay farmers, but suggested that prices be fair to both agriculturists and processors. The private sector agreed to comply with his proposed short-term solution.

As for long-term solutions, the Commerce Minister will discuss his plan to revamp the industrial structure of the palm oil industry with related sectors to prevent a further price decline.

The revamp will focus on the zoning of oil palm farming, regulation of refinery numbers, and the actual demand for alternative energy. Results of the meeting will be submitted to the National Palm Oil Committee for consideration.

Fertilizer companies meanwhile have decided to lower fertilizer prices by at least five percent for an initial six months, from April 16 to October 16 to help farmers reduce production costs.


Commerce Min orders survey of goods prices during Songkran

BANGKOK, 9 April 2015 (NNT) – The Ministry of Commerce has instructed its provincial offices nationwide to make certain there are no products being overpriced during this Songkran long holiday. After chairing a meeting to follow up on the work progress of all provincial commerce offices, Commerce Minister Gen Chatchai Sarikalya revealed that he has instructed the offices to impose strict regulation on sales of products in their respective areas during the Songkran Festival. The order is aimed at preventing vendors from using the traveling season to their advantage by pushing up the prices of goods. From now, the minister said each office will be dispatching its staff to survey product prices in prime tourist locations as well as train stations and bus terminals. Despite the holiday period, the Department of Internal Trade’s hotline 1569 will remain open to consumers’ complaints around the clock. Furthermore, Gen Chatchai also assigned the commerce offices to assess the local output of seasonal fruits, such as longan, longkong and mangosteen, which are expected to saturate the market soon, in order to formulate appropriate preventive measures against price declines.


Chiang Mai locals protest halal industrial estate project

CHIANG MAI, 9 April 2015 (NNT) – More than a thousand villagers from Doi Lo district of Chiang Mai province have staged a protest against the planned construction of a halal industrial estate in their area, citing its impact on local agriculture.

Chiang Mai Governor Suriya Prasatbandit traveled to the Doi Lo District Office in order to accept a letter from Doi Lo residents concerning their disapproval of the project to establish a halal industrial estate on an 800-rai plot of land in the district. Over 1,500 people reportedly joined the demonstration on fear that such a project would bring about changes that would affect their way of life.

The letter claimed that no surveys have ever been conducted by the project supervisors on the locals’ opinions regarding the project while there are also attempts to convert Doi Lo from an agricultural to an industrial zone. As most of the residents are agriculturists, water is a much-needed resource in the area. Should the industrial estate be set up, the local farmers doubt how much water would have to be used for industrial purposes and whether the remaining supply would suffice their need.

On this occasion, Mr Suriya clarified to the protesters that the halal industrial estate would open up a large number of job opportunities for the locals. Moreover, it could establish Doi Lo as a hub for halal food, thus generating more income for Chiang Mai province and the northern region as a whole.

Nonetheless, the Governor insisted that the project is now in the early stage, with location surveys still being carried out. He affirmed the letter of objection from residents will be passed on to concerned agencies, believing it could potentially lead to the cancellation of the project.


Pollution Control Dept names 11 rivers unfit for Songkran activity

BANGKOK, 9 April 2015 (NNT) – The Pollution Control Department (PCD) has named 11 rivers which are unfit for the water-splashing activities for Songkran revelers due to their high concentrations of Coliform bacteria.

The 11 rivers reportedly contain an excess of 4,000 units of fecal coliform, which is an indicator of water quality from natural sources. Fecal coliform bacteria are the most common microbiological contaminants of natural waters. They in the digestive tracks of warm-blooded animals, including humans, and are excreted in the feces. Some of these bacteria can cause illnesses such as ear infections, typhoid, hepatitis A, and cholera.

The rivers with alarming levels of Coliform bacteria include the Yom River in Muang district of Sukhothai province, Kwan Phayao in Muang district of Phayao province, the Chao Phraya River in Muang District of Nakhon Sawan province, the Loei River in Muang district of Loei province, Lampao River in Muang and Kamalasai districts of Kalasin province, and the Chumphon River in Muang district of Chumphon province

The water in the city moat in Chiang Mai meanwhile is of moderate quality. Experts said that the water was usable for the water-splashing activities but suggested revelers avoid its direct contact with skin wounds. Merrymakers who use water from natural sources are advised to test the water quality by observing its color and smell and their skin’s reaction to it.

Experts also suggested that revelers wash their bodies immediately after finishing the Songkran water-splashing activity.


Udon Thani continues safety upgrade for railroad crossings

UDON THANI, 9 April 2015 (NNT) – 19 Local Administrative Organizations in Udon Thani are urged to take care of the safety features of railroad crossings in the province to prevent the accident during Songkran holidays.

The Governor of Udon Thani Noppawat Singsakda has inspected the province's safety and accident prevention measures for railroad crossing in the Nong Khon Kwang subdistrict of Mueang Udon Thani district. This railroad crossing was the location of a fatal accident that happened during the previous New Year holiday.

After his observation, he praised the Ban Chan and Nong Khon Kwang subdistrict municipalities' accomplishments for improving the safety instruments at this crossing.

Provincial staff will be stationed at this level crossing during 9-16 April 2015 to provide assistance and assure the safety to the traffic crossing the railway. Information on the train timetable from the Nong Khon Kwang railway station will also be provided.

There are 59 railroad crossings in Udon Thani province under the supervision of 19 Local Administrative Organizations. Only 15 of the crossings are equipped with barriers, while the rest are awaiting equipment from the State Railway of Thailand, thus temporary safety solutions are required.


DOEB to increase palm oil in bio-diesel from 3.5% to 7%

YBANGKOK, 10 April 2015, (NNT) - The Department of Energy Business (DOEB) is increasing the ratio of palm oil in bio-diedel from 3.5% to 7% beginning on April 16th .

Director-General of the DOEB Witoon Kulcharoenwirat said the move would help absorb the oversupply of palm oil in the market, in accordance with the subcommittee for oil palm and palm oil management's decision, which is expected to lower the national crude palm oil stock to 170,000 tons.

By increasing the ratio of palm oil from 3.5% to 7%, changing the bio-diesel formula from B3 to B7, the consumption of palm oil would increase by 70,000 tons a month.

According to the Director-General, the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand has been asked to use more palm oil in producing electricity in its power plant in Krabi. Furthermore, the department has also urged the private sector to purchase raw palm oil at least at the current price tag.

Farmers, meanwhile, have been asked to refrain from harvesting their palm fruit prematurely.


UTCC: Public spending during Songkran predicted at 119 billion baht

BANGKOK, 10 April 2015 (NNT) - According to a research by the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, 119 billion baht of public spending is expected during this year’s Songkran holidays, an increase of 2.01% from the year earlier.

The figure, despite being the highest prediction, is actually the slowest expansion rate in 5 years, thanks to the rising prices of commodity products and services.

The research indicated the reason behind the slower spending growth is the public concerns over the local economy and low agricultural product prices which cause residents to be more frugal.

Nonetheless, the research pointed out that this year would be the first year that Thai celebrants focus more on party expenses, such as food, drinks and alcoholic beverages. Meanwhile, fewer people were spending on merit making activities and tourism, a sentiment that reflects worries among the public.


Sommai expects local economy to recover soon

BANGKOK, 10 April 2015, (NNT) - The local economy is showing signs of recovery given the government collected 1.15 trillion baht in revenue during the first 6 months of this fiscal year, which started from October 2014 to March 2015.

According to the Finance Minister, Sommai Phasee, even though the figure is 3% higher than that of the same period last fiscal year, it fell short of target by 2%.

The Department reportedly collected 61 billion baht in Value Added Tax (VAT) at the end of March --the end of the first half of the fiscal year-- an on-year increase of 6.6 %, which signals the recovery of the local economy, said the minister.

Domestic VAT collection increased by 19.5% year-on-year, while VAT collection from imports dropped by 9.5%. The minister attributed the positive signs to the government’s previous stimulus package.


DPM reassures ambassadors to Thailand on Article 44 usage

BANGKOK, 7 April 2015 (NNT) The Deputy Prime Minister and NCPO’s spokesman assured ambassadors and foreign media today that the use of Article 44 is only to maintain order, enacted with respect to human rights principles.

The Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam, and the Spokesman of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) Col Winthai Suvaree today elaborated on the NCPO’s 3/2015 announcement to ambassadors to Thailand and foreign media representatives.

The Deputy Prime Minister said that Thailand has been at an abnormal situation since the past 50 years, therefore special laws are required in maintaining peace and order, as the nation is currently transitioning to achieve sustainability through reformation.

He said that Article 44 implemented to cope with an emergency situation, that could be prolonged in the long term. Therefore the government will consider all actions executed from this article in respect to the principles of human rights.

The NCPO Spokesman has said that the Article 44 of the interim constitution grants power to the NCPO Chief that will bring orderliness to the nation.

The law grants the power to the officials to conduct operations that prevent and suppress any misconducts to the monarchy, national security issues, weapons of war, and the violation to NCPO’s decrees.

On this occasion, the NCPO Spokesman asked the media to refrain from reporting any information that could affect peace and order, while assuring that the implementation of this article will not affect the general public, but will improve public confidence in security.

He also added that that all actions from the government and the NCPO Chief have always been done within the framework of human rights principle, which will help the nation's recovery.


TAT expects Songkran foreign tourist arrivals to rise 30%

BANGKOK, 8 April 2015 (NNT) The lifting of martial law is expected to result in more foreign tourists visiting Thailand during the Songkran festival, whereas Japan and South Korea's banning of Thai chartered flights should not affect foreign tourist arrivals into the kingdom, said Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) acting governor Chuthaporn Roengronasa.

According to Ms. Chuthaporn, the TAT expects no less than 300 chartered flights to enter Thailand between April 11-19. This influx of visitors would push the number of foreign tourist arrivals during the Songkran period to roughly 500,000. About 14.5 billion baht of revenue is expected to be generated as a result. The projected number of foreign tourist arrivals during this Songkran exceeds last year's figure by 30%. According to the TAT acting governor, the expected rise of foreign tourist numbers may be attributed to the lifting of martial law and a more stable political climate.

Commenting on Japan and South Korea's banning of Thai chartered flights, the TAT chief said the ban's effect will be more apparent on outbound flights from Thailand to the two countries whereas tourists from Japan and South Korea will still be able to enter Thailand via routine flights, and chartered flights originating from the two countries.


Tak holds OTOP fair introducing Thai products to AEC

TAK, 8 April 2015, (NNT) The province of Tak is holding a fair introducing Thai OTOP products to the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). The event, held at the lawn in front of the King Taksin Maharat Shrine in Muang District, is running until Friday April 10th.

According to the provincial administration office, the fair highlights items produced locally through local wisdom, creating jobs and income for the residents. The fair also provides an additional distribution channel for OTOP goods and hands-on experiences for amateur entrepreneurs.

The office said vendors can take this opportunity to ready themselves for the upcoming AEC, fulfilling their roles as border traders. Several OTOP items can be further developed to compete in ASEAN markets.

The fair is expected to stimulate the local economy and tourism in the province as well.


JSCCIB: GDP expansion of 3.5% likely in 2015 as economy continues sluggish recovery

BANGKOK, 8 April 2015 (NNT) The Joint Standing Committee on Commerce, Industry, and Banking (JSCCIB) indicated on Tuesday the tourism sector was driving the slow recovery of the Thai economy and that GDP expansion would likely be 3.5% for this year.

During its meeting on Tuesday, the standing committee, composed of the Thai Chamber of Commerce (TCC), the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) and Thai Bankers' Association deemed that tourism will be the main driver of economic progress in 2015 and that foreign tourist arrivals are expected to reach at least 28 million visits.

The JSCCIB indicated that although as much as 43% of the annual budget has been disbursed, it would like the government to expedite budget disbursement in order to further stimulate the economy. The committee expects state sector investment projects to start generating cash flow in the third and fourth quarters, whereas private sector investments into special economic zones and BOI-endorsed investments should generate cash flow by the middle of the year. These driving factors, combined with the strength of the tourism sector, are expected to enable the Thai economy to expand by 3.5% in 2015.

Meanwhile, the standing committee has slashed its export growth projection to just 1% from the earlier figure of 3.5%. Exports to the United States grew roughly 2% but this expansion was offset by the negative growth of exports to Europe and Japan. For the first two months of 2015, exports growth was a negative 4.82%. As a means to address this shortfall, the committee disclosed it would discuss new markets penetration and products development with the Ministry of Commerce, especially for Thai food products.


Government clarifies Section 44 use to foreign diplomats and press

BANGKOK, 8 April 2015 (NNT) The government has clarified details pertaining to the NCPO's announcement no. 3/2558 and the use of Section 44 of the interim constitution to foreign diplomats and press members, emphasizing the need for the special law in maintaining orderliness.

Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam and representatives of relevant government agencies indicated to foreign representatives that is was necessary for the government to use Section 44 to facilitate orderliness during the political transition period, and that it will be used sparingly and cautiously, and consideration will always be given to human rights.

Meanwhile, Colonel Winthai Suwaree, spokesperson to the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), explained that Section 44 empowers state officials to suppress wrongdoings related to lese majeste affairs, internal security affairs, firearms and violation of orders issued by the NCPO. He added that the NCPO announcement no. 3/2558 afforded the authorities a special tool to provide for the safety of the lives and assets of members of the public, and that it would only impact ill-intentioned individuals who deliberately conduct acts of unrest.


Russian PM pays an official visit to Thailand to widen bilateral cooperation

BANGKOK, 7 April 2015 (NNT) Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev is on his two-day official visit to Thailand from April 7-8, the first visit to Thailand by a Prime Minister of the Russian Federation in 25 years, Government Spokesman Yongyuth Maiyalap said on Tuesday.

Mr. Medvedev is here as guest of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha. Both are scheduled to meet in plenary and group sessions and will witness the signing of several agreements, after which a press conference will be held.

The Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Thailand will also host a luncheon in honor of the Prime Minister of the Russian Federation and his delegation.

During the visit, memoranda of understanding on cooperation in machinery, engineering and advanced navigation technologies will be signed by the Thai and Russian private sectors. These memorandums will provide frameworks for further business cooperation between Thai and Russian companies concerned, which will contribute to an overall increase in bilateral trade and investment between Thailand and Russia.


The 5th Amazing Winter Flowers Festival with Blooming Tulips in Rayong to open Apr 8-17

RAYONG, 7 April 2015 (NNT) "The 5th Amazing Winter Flowers Festival with Tulips in Full Bloom" will be held from April 8-17 in Rayong in order to showcase Thailand’s success in growing cold-climate plants by using the cold energy technology of the PTT's Gas Separation Plant in Rayong province.

Apart from tulips, the event features a wide range of winter flowers such as lilies, Amaryllis, Gladiolus and temperate fruits such as strawberries. The 1,200 square-meter exhibition is divided into six zones as follows: the Auspicious Flower Garden in Honor of HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn where visitors can also sign their names to offer felicitations to the Princess, the Non-Native Species of Flowers Zone, the Green Garden, the Applied Garden, the Hanging Flowers Garden and the Garden of the Future.

"The 5th Amazing Winter Flowers Festival in Rayong” is held at the Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn Herb Garden in Rayong, in conjunction with the Princess’s 5th cycle birthday anniversary. It is open from 9 a.m. to 7.30 p.m. Entry fee is 20 baht each. Proceeds from the event will be donated to Wang Chan Hospital. For more information, please call 038-915314.


Cabinet approves 5 measures to control road accidents during Songkran

BANGKOK, 7 April 2015 (NNT) The cabinet has approved measures proposed by the Interior Ministry in order to keep road accidents at minimum during Songkran Festival, Government spokesman Yongyuth Maiyalap said on Tuesday after the weekly cabinet meeting.

The five measures aim to ensure effective management of traffic flows, improved road conditions, readiness of vehicles and road users and contingency plans to handle road accidents and casualties.

The five measures will be applied both before and after Songkran. April 1-8 will be the preparatory period for all the measures while April 9-15 will be when the measures are seriously implemented.


NRC’s public health reform aims to make the people the centre of all development

BANGKOK, 7 April 2015 (NNT) A committee under the National Reform Council is urging for the setting up of an efficient public health service system with the people at the centre of all improvement.

Associate Professor Porapan Punyaratabandhu, chairwoman of the NRC’s committee on public health reform, said that the committee has completed its proposed reform plan and agreed that Thailand’s public health system should put the people at the center first.

Mrs. Porapan elaborated that, in doing so, the health service should be made available within a close proximity of all Thais of all levels and all the services must be extended to cover not only physical conditions but also mental and social elements.

She added that the reform of the system should also lead to the encouragement of the use of traditional Thai medicine, alternative medicine, and local wisdom related to medical practice.


Govt to clarify Section 44 to foreign ambassadors and media

BANGKOK, 7 April 2015 (NNT) The government is set to clarify Section 44 of the 2014 interim constitution to foreign ambassadors and press.

Government spokesperson Major General Sansern Kaewkamnerd revealed that the government has scheduled a hearing today with foreign ambassadors, as well as international organizations and media.

The hearing, presided over by Major General Weerachon Sukontapatipak and Colonel Winthai Suvaree, will explain the use of Section 44 after lifting martial law.

Major General Sansern explained that confusion over Section 44 in the international community has prompted the Cabinet to hold the conference to clarify the legislation and how it applies to the government’s authority.

Many believe erroneously that since it came into effect, Section 44 affords the Thai government more power.


Thailand’s top seven banks prepare 180.9 billion baht in banknotes.

BANGKOK, 7 April 2015, (NNT) Thailand’s top seven banks are preparing a combined 180.9 billion baht in banknotes for the Songkran holidays from April 11 - 16, an increase of 6.95 billion baht from the same period last year.

The move ignores slow consumer spending triggered by the sluggish economy and rising living expenses.

Krungthai Bank is preparing the most cash for the holiday, reportedly reserving 49.27 billion baht in banknotes. The figure is an increase of 7.81 percent year-on-year.

On the other hand, Bangkok Bank is preparing 45 billion baht in banknotes. Its customers can withdraw cash from its 9,000 ATMs nationwide.

Siam Commercial Bank has chosen to maintain the same cash reserves as it did during last year’s Songkran holiday and is setting aside 35 billion baht in banknotes. The bank stated that half of the amount is for customers in Bangkok, and the other half for provincial areas.

Meanwhile, Kasikorn Bank is preparing 27.5 billion baht in banknotes this year, an increase of 1.9 billion baht from 2014.

Thai Military Bank and Bank of Ayudhya are preparing 12.5 billion baht and 9.7 billion baht of banknotes, respectively. CIMB Bank, the smallest financial institute of the seven banks, is only preparing two billion baht for the upcoming holidays.


Public-private sectors will meet to prop up export performances

BANGKOK, 7 April 2015 (NNT) Minister of Commerce General Chatchai Sarikalya will soon call a meeting with the export sector to adjust the country’s export strategy following a decline of nearly 5% in export earnings during the past two months.

Commerce Ministry Spokesperson Duangkamol Jiambutr said Thai exports dropped 4.82% during February-March 2015, compared to the same period last year with a total of 34.48 billion US dollars in earnings.

Ms. Duangkamol said the meeting will include representatives from the Federation of Thai Industries, the Thailand Chamber of Commerce, the Thai National Shippers’ Council and leading exporters. According to the spokesperson, initially the private sector wants the government to look after the baht currency fluctuation which is swinging too wildly affecting their long term performances. They also asked that the government seek ways to eliminate trade barriers in importing countries and penetrate new markets.

Ms. Duangkamol said the government was also urged by SMEs to negotiate with large-scale entrepreneurs to help the former in terms of marketing in foreign countries.


TOT to ask 3,500 employees to retire early in order to retrench

BANGKOK, 7 April 2015, (NNT) TOT (Public) Company's executive board has approved of an early retirement plan for up to 3,500 of its senior employees in 2015 - 2016. The program will cost the company 6 billion baht to implement.

The company currently has 16,500 employees on its payroll. TOT has assigned its executives to look into the details of the scheme before proposing it to the board tomorrow.

Initially, certain terms and conditions of the plan have yet to be clarified, such as those who choose to join the retire plan cannot be rehired in future by companies under the TOT network, the minimum number of employees each department needs to maintain, those eligible must be 45 years old of age and have been with the TOT for at least 15 years, and those who join the plan would receive compensation worth 35-40 times their final salaries.

According to the company, the scheme is aimed at reducing its workforce size and cutting costs. It also expressed concern that the management would resort to more outsourcing, which would render the plan fruitless.


SRT to increase 30 more train trips during the long Songkran holidays

BANGKOK, 6 April 2015 (NNT) The State Railway of Thailand has announced it will increase the frequency of train service by 30 trips daily which will be able to accommodate about 120,000 more passengers daily during the long Songkran holiday period.

SRT Governor Wuthichart Kalyanamitra recently made the announcement, saying 12 train trips would be added from April 10th - 12th and another 18 from April 15th - 19th. All of the 30 trips would be offered free of charge.

Furthermore, the SRT Governor said the service during the Songkran holidays would focus on three principles – safety to lives and properties of passengers, ban of alcohol consumption within stations and on trains, and cleanliness of restrooms both in stations and on trains.

Governor Wuthichart had also led a press tour of the newly renovated toilets and bathrooms in Hualampong Station. According to him, the new facilities would be opened to the public for free for a month, after which maintenance fees would be collected. The new bathrooms and toilet will be available from this Tuesday onward.


Surin launches sufficiency living campaign

SURIN, 5 April 2015 (NNT) Farmers in Surin province gathered to observed the sufficiency living models in the province to promote sustainable lifestyle in accordance to the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy.

The Vice Governor Of Surin Winai Torgchitpitak has revealed that there are many role models who are considered as ‘folk scholars’ in the sufficiency economy philosophy. Therefore, the province held the sufficiency living learning campaign, bringing farmers in to learn the sustainable lifestyle from the role model and examples.

Role model persons in Surin province includes Mr. Suwan Kanpai, a ‘folk scholar’ on sustainable lifestyle and democracy who has hosted the sufficiency economy learning activity at his 35 rai joint plantation with the concept ‘sufficiency economy philosophy = precept, contemplation, and wisdom’.

According to Mr Suwan, the sustainable lifestyle starts from self consideration and understanding self appropriateness to achieve a core understanding of the sufficiency economy philosophy that can be adapted to every activity.

Mr Suwan’s joint plantation currently produces many fruits and vegetable all year round, generating a sufficient income to the household and serves as a foundation for the generation.


Thais trust Gov't and NCPO will use Section 44 creatively, Sansern insists

BANGKOK, 5 April 2015 (NNT) Many public opinion polls have indicated a majority of Thai people is confident that the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) and the Government will creatively use an executive order under Section 44 of the interim constitution. The order was introduced in place of martial law, amid the stated concerns of international organizations. Deputy government spokesman Sansern Kaewkamnerd, was commented on Sunday

He said a delay in normal problem-solving procedures in Thailand may cause negative effects on various aspects of national progress especially economic growth.

Responding to the concerns of international organizations in regard to the use of Section 44, Maj Gen Sansern said the organizations still lacked an understanding of Thailand’s special context which required the introduction of Section 44.

Thus representatives of NCPO and the Government, led by Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam, have invited foreign media and international Ambassadors to a meeting on Tuesday 7th April at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The meeting is intended to confirm that Thai authorities have never abused Section 44.

Maj Gen Sansern mentioned the issue of using Section 44 to silence abusive news content. He said that since the law had been enforced, none of the appropriately responsible media had been deprived their right to free speech.

However Gen Prayut’s personality of sincerity and accuracy has prompted wide criticism. To avoid such criticism, he will become more low profile and allow the authorities which are directly related to particular issues handle the flow of information.


NLA’s Energy Committee holds hearings on Petroleum survey in Songkhla

SONGKHLA, 5 April 2015 (NNT) The NLA’s Energy Committee organized two public hearings on the weekend in Songkhla Province, where petroleum survey plots are located, to gauge the impact of petroleum drilling in the Gulf of Thailand, in the view of various groups of people especially fisheries operators. The hearings were in response to public disquiet over the 21st round of bidding for petroleum concessions.

Due to public disagreement with the 21st round of bidding for petroleum concessions, the first public hearing was held in Sating Phra District on Saturday 4th April followed by a second held in Mueang District with the participation of the Governor of Songkhla, provincial authorities, representatives of the fisheries sector and the "Thai Energy Get Back" group.

According to the Chairman of the committee Gen Sakon Satjanit, fisheries operators attending both public hearings called on the government and petroleum concessionaires to ensure a reduction in the impact of drilling on their business.

All the opinions, information and suggestions from Songkhla will be analyzed and summarized at a meeting of the energy committee, before being submitted to Parliament and the government respectively.

The special energy committee was set up by the NLA to conduct a study of the Petroleum Act, B.E. 2514 and the Petroleum Income Tax, B.E. 2514 along with representatives from the government, the private sector and the public to find the best and fairest solution for everyone.


Thai rice fair yields satisfying outcome, say gov’t officials

BANGKOK, 5 April 2015 - (NNT) The overall outcome of the concluded The ‘Thai Rice: Thainess’ fair concluded with a satisfying trade value by 7 million baht, according to an official statement during the closing ceremony.

The Permanent Secretary of Agriculture and Cooperatives Ministry Chavalit Chookajorn, and the Deputy Secretary-General to the Prime Minister Renu Tunkachivangoon presided over the closing ceremony of the ‘Thai Rice: Thainess’ fair, organized by the government to promote the variety of Thai rice and provide opportunity to farmers.

The Deputy Secretary-General to the Prime Minister said that this event concluded with a satisfying outcome. The 1-month run fair has seen about 46,000 visitors and generated a trade value of almost 7 million baht.

The event has also been a stage for trade negotiations between farmers and private companies, while rice strains from 20 farmers have been selected to be placed on sale at the Makro Samsen shopping center on 6-30 April 2015.

Meanwhile, the Permanent Secretary of Agriculture and Cooperatives Ministry said that this event had successfully raised the awareness on the importance and value of Thai rice, and also demonstrated the dedication of farmers among the public.

He said that it was his desire for Thai rice to be recognized further on the global stage, while the outcome from this event will be further presented at the cabinet’s meeting.

He also added that the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives and the related agencies will organize the fruit fair at Klong Phasing Krung Kasem, the same location as the rice fair, in May.


KResearch: Bangkok locals are expected to spend 22.8 billion baht this Songkran

BANGKOK, 6 April 2015, (NNT) Kasikorn Research Center has projected that Bangkok residents would spend as much as 22.8 billion baht during this year’s long Songkran holidays, with half of the amount on party expenses.

The Center said the figure is an increase of 3.6% from 2014's. As Bangkok residents’ purchasing power, which took a direct hit from political turmoil last year, has recovered.

The center elaborated that 11.5 billion baht would be spent on party expenses such as food and drinks; 4.6 billion baht would likely be on shopping, and 3.1 billion baht on accommodation and other travel expenses. It also speculated that merit makings would cost Bangkok residents about 3.1 billion baht, and about 500 million baht would likely be spent on water-spraying gear.

Another key factor that will boost spending of the capital residents, by up to 10-15 according to Kasikorn, is petrol prices, which have dropped by 30% since last year

According to the center's survey, 54% of those residing in Bangkok said they would spend the Songkran period in the capital, and 27% of them plan to visit their hometown.


Tropical storms, hail to affect Thailand this week

BANGKOK, 5 April 2015 - (NNT) The Meteorological Department has forecast higher temperatures in the upper part of Thailand and hot to very hot weather across the country this week.

From 7-11 April, a high pressure system from China will move to the upper part of the country and the South China Sea, resulting in tropical storms in the northern, northeastern, central and eastern regions. Thunderstorms, gusts and hail storms are expected in some areas.

The department warned people to take care of themselves following hot to very hot weather and avoid staying outside for a long time. It added that tropical storm Maysak near the northern Philippines would dissipate on 7 April off southern coast of China. The storm would have no impact on Thailand.


Fuel and cooking gas prices dive as Songkran approaches

BANGKOK, 6 April 2015, (NNT) Kasikorn Research Center has projected that Bangkok residents would spend as much as 22.8 billion baht during this year’s long Songkran holidays, with half of the amount on party expenses.

The Center said the figure is an increase of 3.6% from 2014's. As Bangkok residents’ purchasing power, which took a direct hit from political turmoil last year, has recovered.

The center elaborated that 11.5 billion baht would be spent on party expenses such as food and drinks; 4.6 billion baht would likely be on shopping, and 3.1 billion baht on accommodation and other travel expenses. It also speculated that merit makings would cost Bangkok residents about 3.1 billion baht, and about 500 million baht would likely be spent on water-spraying gear.

Another key factor that will boost spending of the capital residents, by up to 10-15 according to Kasikorn, is petrol prices, which have dropped by 30% since last year

According to the center's survey, 54% of those residing in Bangkok said they would spend the Songkran period in the capital, and 27% of them plan to visit their hometown.


PM Prayut chaired presentation of land use permits in Chiang Mai

BANGKOK, 5 April 2015 (NNT) The prime minister has witnessed the presentation of the permits for the use of land inside the national park in Chiang Mai Province.

During his visit to the northern capital, Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha, the prime minister, chaired the official presentation of land use permits to the residents of Tambon Mae Ta of Mae On District in Chiang Mai -- an initiative that is intended to enable the people to make good use of the forest while helping preserve forest resources and reviving degraded forest.

The event was organised by the Natural Resources Ministry and involved 7,282 rai of land. A total of 1,235 families have been benefited by the project.

The distribution of land use permit has been handled by the National Land Policy Committee under the policy declared to the National Legislative Assembly on September 12 of last year, with an aim to find a balance between preservation and sustainable use.

Residents who have been granted the permit can make use of the land given to them for 30 years, during which no sale or exchange of ownership is allowed.


CNN lists Thailand’s Grand Palace as world’s third most visited palace

BANGKOK, 3 April 2015 (NNT) – The Grand Palace in Bangkok has been listed on CNN.com's website as the third most visited palaces in the world.

International news agency CNN's webside, CNN.com, published a top ten ranking article titled ‘World's most visited palaces and castles’ on 30 March 2015. The ranking featured Bangkok's Grand Palace ranked at the third, after The Forbidden City in Beijing, and Lourve in Paris.

The Grand Palace in Bangkok sees 8 million annual visitors, and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha in the palace’s ground is a popular tourist destination with architectural features, renowned as one of the most beautiful in Thailand.

CNN’s world's most visited palaces and castles list comprised of the Forbidden City (Palace Museum) in Beijing at the first place, the Louvre in Paris at the second place, the Grand Palace in Bangkok at the third place, followed by the Palace of Versailles in France, the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul, the Winter Palace (State Hermitage Museum) in St. Petersburg, the Tower of London, the Schonbrunn Palace in Vienna, the Alhambra y Generalife in Granada, and the Shuri Castle in Okinawa.


NRC subcommittee on media’s freedom formed

BANGKOK, 3 April 2015 (NNT) - The committee on media and ICT reform of the National Reform Council (NRC) has formed a subcommittee to draft a law to protect freedom and promote media ethics. The legislation is aimed at making the media independent and free from interference.

Deputy spokesman of the committee said the 15-member subcommittee consisted of five members of the NRC and ten representatives of the media and lawyers. The committee’s main task was to draft a law to establish a media association whose work was to ensure freedom, welfare and protection for the media, said the spokesman.

According to the spokesman, there are three principles of the media reform, including freedom with responsibility, freedom for the greater good of the public and freedom without interference from the government and business organizations.

The spokesman expressed his confidence that the media reform would help increase standards and credibility of the media.


BOT to issue 10m more Princess Sirindhorn’s birthday commemorative banknotes

BANGKOK, 3 April 2015 (NNT) – The Bank of Thailand will issue an additional 10 million 100-baht commemorative banknotes, on the auspicious occasion of HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn’s fifth cycle birthday.

The BOT Governor Prasarn Trairatvorakul has revealed that the BOT will be issuing 10 million additional commemorative 100-baht banknotes for the auspicious occasion of HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn’s fifth cycle birthday, due to the high demand from the public.

The public can exchange existing bank notes for this new lot of commemorative banknotes at all branches of the Government Savings Bank, the Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives, the Government Housing Bank, and the Islamic Bank of Thailand from 27 April 2015. The current lot of this commemorative banknotes issued on 2 April 2015 is still available for exchange the current stock runs out.

The BOT Governor has said that the BOT will conduct a survey on the supply of these commemorative banknotes, to ensure that the supply will meet public demand.


Princess Ubolratana welcomed at NBT studio

BANGKOK, 3 April 2015 (NNT) – Princess Ubolratana visited NBT Television station on Vibhavadi Rd,. in the evening yesterday (2 April 2015) to tape her 'To Be Number One' program.

On arriving at the NBT station she was welcomed by executives of the Public Relations Department (PRD): Director-General Apinan Juntarungsri, Deputy Director-General Dr.Charoon Chaisorn, and Executive Director Chamlong Singto-ngam.

The program was developed under the guidance of the Princess to offer opportunities to talented young Thai performers between the ages of six and twenty-five as a wholesome lifestyle choice. The To Be Number One program is broadcast weekly on Saturdays 8.30 p.m. to 9.30 p.m. on NBT. Princess Ubolratana regularly appears to answer viewers' questions, in the segment ‘Talk to the Princess’.


Railway Police to enhance security protection during Songkran holidays

BANGKOK, 3 April 2015 (NNT) – Railway Police Division is ready to provide security protection and services to the public during the Songkran holidays with stricter incident prevention measures in risk areas, says Deputy-Commander.

The Deputy-Commander of Railway Police Division Pol Col Ratchatham Jitthamma has disclosed new security measures and assistance to the public and railway passengers, planned for the 2015 Songkran holidays.

He has said that more railway police officers will be dispatched to stations and on trains, to monitor the situation, suppress unlawful activities, and provide security protection to the public.

The frequency of security patrols at risk areas will also be increased, while more officers will be available on board all scheduled and additional train services.


Thai charter flights permitted in Japan for 2 more months after MoU signing

BANGKOK, 3 April 2015 (NNT) – The Ministry of Transport confirms that Thailand and Japan have signed an agreement to allow charter flights to continue operating between the two countries for another two months.

Following Japan’s prohibition of Thai airlines from conducting charter flights to the country, Transport Minister ACM Prajin Juntong announced that the Japan Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB) has today agreed to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Thailand’s Department of Civil Aviation, temporarily relaxing the effect of its previous order.

The MoU stipulates that all charter flights from Thailand can enter Japan normally, effective from April 11 to May 31. However, the types of aircraft used must remain unchanged.

As Japan concurred to help Thailand enhance safety standards in its aviation industry, Thailand is also required to submit progress reports on the overhaul of the Department of Civil Aviation to JCAB periodically. Meanwhile, JCAB is authorized to carry out tests on Thai pilots and aircraft anytime.


MOT: Air carriers inspection for ICAO standard underway

BANGKOK, 3 April 2015 (NNT) – Authorities are inspecting the Air operations of Thai carriers in wake of the ICAO’s audit to the Civil Aviation Department, while all chartered flights will be cleared for take off during 11-12 April, says the Ministry of Transport.

The Deputy Permanent-Secretary of Transport Ministry Voradej Harnprasert has revealed that authorities had commenced the inspection of air operations and equipment maintenance of Thai carriers to destinations in Japan and Korea since 1 April 2015, after the Civil Aviation Department received the Significant Security Concern remark from the International Civil Aviation Organization’s audit.

Six airlines involved in this inspection are Nok Scoot Airlines, Asia Atlantic Airlines, Jet Asia, Asian Air, THAI Airways, and Thai AirAsia X. Nok Scoot Airlines and Asia Atlantic Airlines have already been inspected, while the inspection for Asian Air is expected to be concluded by 7 April. Jet Asia's inspection is expected to be completed on 8 April, while THAI Airways and Thai AirAsia X's inspections are to be completed by 10 April.

The Transport Ministry Deputy Permanent-Secretary has said that the outcome of the inspection will be submitted to the authority in Japan to issue the aviation permit. He assured that all charter flights operated by Thai carriers will be able to fly to destinations in Japan as permitted.

Meanwhile, the aviation authority of South Korea has not yet issued any official document to Thailand’s Civil Aviation Department, while China and Singapore also have not reported any security issuess regarding Thai aviation concern.


Trade between Thailand and Guangxi set to double in 3 years

BANGKOK, 3 April 2015 (NNT) – The Communist Party Chief of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region of China has discussed trade cooperation with the Thai Minister of Commerce, setting a target to increase trade value twofold in the next three years.

Mr Peng Qinghua, Secretary of the Communist Party Committee of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, has paid a courtesy call on Thai Commerce Minister Gen Chatchai Sarikalya during his official visit to Thailand. The officials took this opportunity to discuss trade and investment cooperation as well as development of industrial estates in the cities of Chongzuo and Yulin.

The Guangxi Communist Party Chief also requested Thailand’s support for a logistics network project under the Pan-Beibu Gulf Economic Cooperation which will be beneficial for the enhancement of basic infrastructure and regional connectivity. In exchange, the Thai Commerce Minister asked for a special privilege of being able to ship Thai produce to China by sea, rather than by land which is more costly.

On this occasion, both agreed to a proposal that the trade value between Thailand and Guangxi should be doubled within three years’ time. In 2013, bilateral trade was worth to the tune of 491 million US dollars, increasing 61 percent from the year before. Thailand exported 285 million dollars’ worth of goods to Guangxi, whereas imports from the region were valued at 206 million dollars.

To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Thai-Sino diplomatic relations, the Commerce Ministry has accepted Guangxi’s invitation to display Thai products at the 12th China-ASEAN Expo, which is to be organized in its capital Nanning during September 18-21 this year.


Defense Min poised to ensure public safety during Songkran

BANGKOK, 3 April 2015 (NNT) – The Ministry of Defense is coordinating with related units nationwide on the provision of safety for holidaymakers throughout the upcoming Songkran Festival.

Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Gen Prawit Wongsuwan chaired a videoconference with heads of regional defense offices in Chon Buri, Khon Kaen, Chiang Mai and Phuket in order to ensure their preparedness for security operations during the Songkran holiday.

The officials reported that they are integrating efforts with police, soldiers and the civil sector, both in Bangkok and in their respective areas, for the protection of people’s lives and properties. They voiced full readiness to prevent road accidents and crimes, especially in popular tourist spots and venues of Songkran festivities.

Gen Prawit advised the officials that more emphasis should be placed on preventive measures for accidents as well as prompt response to emergency situations. Public awareness should also be raised on the causes of accidents so as to encourage more participation in prevention efforts.

In addition, the police and the military have been instructed to enforce the law more stringently. People, meanwhile, are urged to contribute to public safety by notifying authorities of accidents or any suspicious activities or individuals.


Announcement on HRH Princess Chulabhorn’s visit to Morocco

BANGKOK, 4 April 2015 (NNT) - Her Royal Highness Princess Chulabhorn is scheduled to visit the Kingdom of Morocco from April 4 to 19, 2015.

According to an announcement by the Bureau of the Royal Household, Her Royal Highness will take part in an international symposium on Plant Kingdom: Source of Medicines, Nutraceuticals and Cosmetics from April 7-9 and will also give a lecture on April 7 at Marrakech at the invitation of the organizer of the symposium.

Her Royal Highness left Thailand from Suvarnabhumi Airport last night and will return to Thailand on April 19.


 

DAILY UPDATE

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Back to Main Page

Foreign Minister: Thailand to continue tackling human-trafficking problem in spite of U.S. assessment

Government spokesman: Appointment of new US ambassador, a good signal for Thailand.

CDC assures focus on anti-corruption laws under new charter.

Nano-finance fraud schemes ongoing despite official campaign having yet to start.

Surat Thani Cooperative reopening today after Friday night blaze

251 killed and 2,532 injured in road accidents from April 9-13

PM lauds Thais for being good host to foreigners during Songkran

Crowded zones targeted for stricter police operations during Songkran

OBEC to make a blacklist of ill-behaved teachers

Exhibition in honor of Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn opened at PRD

PRD holds water-pouring ceremony for Songkran tradition

Commerce Ministry urges private sector to buy palm oil

Commerce Min orders survey of goods prices during Songkran

Chiang Mai locals protest halal industrial estate project

Pollution Control Dept names 11 rivers unfit for Songkran activity

Udon Thani continues safety upgrade for railroad crossings

DOEB to increase palm oil in bio-diesel from 3.5% to 7%

UTCC: Public spending during Songkran predicted at 119 billion baht

Sommai expects local economy to recover soon

DPM reassures ambassadors to Thailand on Article 44 usage

TAT expects Songkran foreign tourist arrivals to rise 30%

Tak holds OTOP fair introducing Thai products to AEC

JSCCIB: GDP expansion of 3.5% likely in 2015 as economy continues sluggish recovery

Government clarifies Section 44 use to foreign diplomats and press

Russian PM pays an official visit to Thailand to widen bilateral cooperation

The 5th Amazing Winter Flowers Festival with Blooming Tulips in Rayong to open Apr 8-17

Cabinet approves 5 measures to control road accidents during Songkran

NRC’s public health reform aims to make the people the centre of all development

Govt to clarify Section 44 to foreign ambassadors and media

Thailand’s top seven banks prepare 180.9 billion baht in banknotes.

Public-private sectors will meet to prop up export performances

TOT to ask 3,500 employees to retire early in order to retrench

SRT to increase 30 more train trips during the long Songkran holidays

Surin launches sufficiency living campaign

Thais trust Gov't and NCPO will use Section 44 creatively, Sansern insists

NLA’s Energy Committee holds hearings on Petroleum survey in Songkhla

Thai rice fair yields satisfying outcome, say gov’t officials

KResearch: Bangkok locals are expected to spend 22.8 billion baht this Songkran

Tropical storms, hail to affect Thailand this week

Fuel and cooking gas prices dive as Songkran approaches

PM Prayut chaired presentation of land use permits in Chiang Mai

CNN lists Thailand’s Grand Palace as world’s third most visited palace

NRC subcommittee on media’s freedom formed

BOT to issue 10m more Princess Sirindhorn’s birthday commemorative banknotes

Princess Ubolratana welcomed at NBT studio

Railway Police to enhance security protection during Songkran holidays

Thai charter flights permitted in Japan for 2 more months after MoU signing

MOT: Air carriers inspection for ICAO standard underway

Trade between Thailand and Guangxi set to double in 3 years

Defense Min poised to ensure public safety during Songkran

Announcement on HRH Princess Chulabhorn’s visit to Morocco

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