Nong Khai border post steps up measures against MERS-CoV spread
NONG KHAI, 5 June 2015 (NNT) The Thailand-Laos
Friendship Bridge Border Crossing is now screening Korean nationals
passing through the border in an effort to prevent the spread of
MERS-CoV virus in Thailand.
Officials at the Thailand-Laos Friendship Bridge Border Crossing and the
Health Control officials in Nong Khai province has tightened screaming
measures for people crossing the Thailand-Laos border, especially for
Korean nationals who work or have families in Laos.
Nong Khai Health Control official Somchit Phanthupho has said that the
health control office is now working with immigration officials at the
Thailand-Laos Friendship Bridge border post to retain all travelers from
countries where MERS CoV virus have been reported, including South
Korea, to receive medical screenings for any suspicious symptoms and to
register for their contact information during their stay in Thailand for
a 14 day precautionary period.
He has said that there are about 50-80 Korean nationals passing through
the Thailand-Laos Friendship Bridge border post daily, while the only
Korean living in Laos, who had been identified as a potential risk has
already returned to Laos. Authority will continue to monitor all
individuals at risk in Thailand.
Flyers and PR signs has been put up and distributed to those who have
the potential to contract the virus to monitor their own symptoms
including fever, coughing, asthma, or diarrhea. If any signs exhibit,
the individuals are required to seek immediate medical attention.
Nong Khai Immigration Police Inspector Pol Lt Col Kantapoj
Chaemprangthong has said that the Nong Khai Immigration Police Commander
has appointed immigration officials to inspect all persons and vehicles
passing through the border post as a precautionary measure.
He has said that all Korean nationals passing through the border post
into Thailand will be referred to the Nong Khai Health Control office
for further inspection, while no suspects of MERS CoV patients have been
found, and officials have received good cooperation from the travelers.
Most Koreans passing through the Thailand-Laos Friendship Bridge border
post are here to do business or have families in Laos PDR. However, no
travelers who came directly from Korea has been inspected during this
Three southern provinces gear up for crisis management exercise
Nakhon Si Thammarat, 5 June 2015 (NNT) Southern
provinces of Nakhon Si Thammarat, Surat Thani and Songkhla are gearing
up for the upcoming crisis management exercise set for next month.
Naknon Si Thammarat Provincial Governor Peerasak Hinmuangkao said the
annual exercise codenamed ‘C-MEX 15’ was a necessary practice for
policy-making agencies in seaside provinces as natural disasters were
growing intense and unpredictable.
The activity, which is conducted in the form of Table Top Exercise,
comprises a series of scenarios including a hijack of an oil ship,
rescue of passengers in sinking boats and evacuation of people stranded
on an island to a shore.
The objective of the project is to test and improve policy-makers’
abilities to coordinate with different agencies under various
circumstances, and to command different life-saving operations. Results
of the exercise will be incorporated into the production of rescue
The national crisis management exercise will take place between July 19
PM invites Thais to opt for eco-friendly products
BANGKOK, 5 June 2015 (NNT) Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has
marked the occasion of World Environment Day day by encouraging
Thai people to use more environmentally-friendly products and
less plastic bags.
During his weekly televised address to the nation, Prime
Minister Prayut stated that the United Nations is placing an
emphasis on eco-friendly production and consumption on World
Environment Day this year which comes under the theme “Seven
Billion Dreams. One Planet. Consume with Care.” The premier
affirmed that the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment
has been conducting a number of projects and activities to raise
awareness of environmental conservation among the people,
One of them is the newly-launched Green Card project, in which
shoppers can collect points and receive special privileges from
their purchase of green products from participating department
stores. It is aimed to instill in the people the habit of
choosing items that are safe for the environment and can help
reduce garbage and greenhouse gas emissions.
According to Gen Prayut, another campaign is also underway to
discourage the use of plastic bags, which can take a long time
to decompose. As part of the pilot project which will be
introduced in shopping malls and convenience stores, plastic
bags will not be available for shoppers on the 15th of every
month as a way to promote the use of cloth bags.
MOPH ensures strict MERS-CoV infection surveillance
BANGKOK, 5 May 2015 (NNT) The Ministry of Public
Health has ensured a strict surveillance policy to prevent the outbreak
of the MERS-CoV virus in Thailand, providing precautions care for
Muslims traveling during their Hajj pilgrimage.
The Minister of Public Health Rajata Rajatanavin said at the National
Reform Council assembly today regarding the precautionary measures
against the spread of the MERS-CoV virus, that the Ministry of Public
Health (MOPH) has taken this matter very seriously, comparable to the
efforts in place during the Ebola virus outbreak.
He has said that the MOPH has implemented surveillance measures for
people traveling to and from countries where this virus is reported,
including the Muslim pilgrims to Mecca for Hajj. The Ministry is now
working with hospitals in provinces where airports are located to
develop fast diagnosis procedures to cope with the potential outbreaks.
On this occasion, the Minister of Public Health also addressed the
pricing issue of public hospitals, where many complaints have been made
regarding the high price, saying that the ministry is now asking for all
private hospitals to clearly report all the costs and fees to their
patients before beginning treatment. This will allow the patient to be
aware of the price beforehand.
Ministry of Public Health issues solutions to costly private medical services
BANGKOK, 5 June 2015 (NNT) The Ministry of Public
Health has mapped out solutions to the costly medical services of
private hospitals following the public outcry.
During a meeting of the National Legislative Assembly (NLA), Public
Health Minister Ratchata Ratchatanawin disclosed that the Ministry of
Public Health and related agencies had set up a special committee to
follow up on complaints about overcharging medical bills imposed by
Dr. Ratchata said the Ministry of Public Health has already ordered
private hospitals to proportion their profits and drug pricing to the
actual costs, adding that private hospitals must also keep the public
updated on drug prices based on the market mechanism.
The Ministry has also planned to issue rules to enable patients to use
doctors’ prescriptions to buy medicine at drug stores if they consider
medications sold by private hospitals too expensive. All private
hospitals were in addition ordered to make their own websites to post
their treatment fee rate so that consumers can choose hospitals that
suit their budgets.
Dr. Ratchata also revealed initial findings attributing the jump in
medical service fees to several factors, including investment in
property, purchase of newly-develop drugs and equipment as well as
adoption of advanced treatment technologies.
Seminar on the charter draft to be held in Bangkok this weekend
BANGKOK, 5 June 2015 (NNT) The Constitutional
Drafting Committee (CDC) has cooperated with King Prajadhipok's
Institute and the Community Organizations Development Institute (CODI)
to hold a seminar on Constitution Draft Explanation in Bangkok at Centra
Government Complex Hotel & Convention Centre Chaengwattana on 6-7 June
The main objective of the seminar is to make the public understand
important points of the charther draft while they can also propose
opinion for its amendments.
At the seminar, CDC chairman Borwornsak Uwanno will give a special talk
about the charter, followed by CDC members presenting gists of the new
The participants will have a chance to present their views on various
topics such as citizenship, rights, duty, freedom, liberty, public
participation, politicians, political institutes, election, justice
system, national reform as well as reconciliation in Thailand.
Thailand actively deals with irregular migration
BANGKOK, 5 June 2015 (NNT) The Ministry of Defense
has reported the progress of Operation Center for Patrol and
Humanitarian Assistance to Irregular Migrants in the Indian Ocean. The
center's sea and land patrols in the Andaman Sea found no group of
Spokesman of the Ministry of Defense Maj.Gen. Khongchip Tantrawanit on
Friday said seven patrol ships, led by Ang Thong and Sai Buri capital
ships, were deployed by the center. The air force also patroled the sky
over Phang Nga, Krabi and Satun for longer than 10 hours a day.
The Thai army is responsible for land operations to identify and check
the areas where illegal migrants are staying. The Thai navy is
responsible for sea operations.
The spokesman added that Thailand’s joint air patrol with the U.S. went
on smoothly and efficiently. An air base was set up in Malaysia with the
Thai Ministry of Defense assigning tasks and identifying target areas.
The operation was scheduled to end on 11 June 2015, he said.
Laos’ development benefits Thai-Lao border trade
BANGKOK, 5 June 2015 (NNT) The Thai-Lao border trade
has reportedly expanded due to Laos’ infrastructure construction, a
customs officer in Nong Khai said.
Chief of the Nong Khai Customs House Atsani Ruengbun on Friday said the
Thai-Lao border trade from October 2014 to April 2015 stood at more than
34 billion baht, 1.66 billion baht was from imports and 32 billion baht
exports. The value of goods in transit was 27 billion baht.
Mr. Atsani forecast that the Thai-Lao border trade had a tendency to
continuously increase since Laos had many infrastructure construction
projects, especially the Bueng That Luang special economic zone project.
Laos was also in the process of developing the country, resulting in
increasing trade and investment in various fields and higher values of
imports, exports and goods in transits, he added.
Thailand and the U.S. have entered joint research to reduce HIV transmission among MSM & TG population
BANGKOK, 5 June 2015 (NNT) The Public Health Ministry
and several U.S. agencies in Thailand have launched a joint research
project with HIV - positive men who have sex with men (MSM) and
transgender (TG) after efforts to reduce the number of new infected
patients were not so successful.
The cooperation began in 2014 involving such agencies as USAID and U.S.
CDC with support from the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS
Relief (PEPFAR). The research will be conducted in seven Thai provinces
in risk of AIDS transmission among the two target groups.
The research project is aimed at reducing the spreading of the disease
among MSM and TG members by encouraging them to attend HIV testing and
receive antiretroviral therapy immediately in line with the Thai
As a result of the cooperation, Thailand is the first country in Asia
which implements the policy of giving free antiretroviral therapy to
HIV-positive patients immediately after positive result. The therapy can
be reachable at state medical centers in all communities.
The US charge d'affairs in Bangkok, Mr. Patrick Murphy said that the
U.S. government was pleased to work with the Thai Public Health Ministry
in this regard as the project benefits the society as a whole.
"HIV test and antiretroviral therapy can save patient's life and prevent
new infection. We can reduce HIV transmission if more people attend the
test and instantly receive the therapy," said Mr. Patrick Murphy.
"The sooner they have HIV test, the earlier they can be healed and live
normal life," he continued, stressing that AIDS is like other chronic
diseases which patients can have healthy life by taking medicine daily.
HIV experts believed that in 2015, around 43 per cent of new infected
patients were members of MSM and TG. Without effective prevention, the
figure is likely to rise. Only 31 per cent of them attended HIV test and
even fewer than half of the tested patients received antiretroviral
DPM pays official visit to Singapore
SINGAPORE, 5 June 2015 (NNT) The Deputy Prime
Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs are now calling to Singapore on
the occasion of the 50th year anniversary celebration of
The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Gen Tanasak
Patimapragorn is now at Singapore during his official visit from 4-6
June 2015, as invited by the Singaporean Minister of Foreign Affairs and
Minister of Law K. Shanmugam. This visit also serves as preparations for
the official visit of the Thai Prime Minister during 11-12 June 2015.
The Thai DPM is scheduled to make an official call to the Singaporean
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, join the Minister of Foreign Affairs and
Minister of Law in discussions, attend a dinner hosted by the Ministry
of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Law, and finally attend the
opening ceremony of the 28th SEA Games as the delegate of the Thai
Both sides have agreed on high level information exchange, and discussed
the organisation of the 50th year anniversary celebration of
Thailand-Singapore relations, where His Majesty the King of Thailand has
appointed the Thai Prime Minister as the royal representative to attend
the 50th anniversary celebration of Singaporean independence on the
Singaporean National Day 9 August 2015.
The Thai Prime Minister will be visiting Singapore on 11-12 June 2015,
while the Thai DPM has invited the Singaporean Minister of Foreign
Affairs and Minister of Law to visit Thailand on an official visit for
the 12th meeting of the Thailand-Singapore Civil Service Exchange
Program (CSEP) that is scheduled to take place in the late half of 2015.
Both sides are reported to be willing to extend cooperations in trade,
investment, tourism, security, and military. The Thai DPM has said that
he is delighted to see that Singapore has confidence in Thailand's
economic capability, and has invited Singapore to invest in the Special
Economic Zones and infrastructure development projects to support more
connections in the economy and in transportation.
The Thai DPM has also expressed his gratitude towards the increasing
amount of Singaporean tourists to Thailand.
Both sides have agreed to encourage the exchange of information to
prevent dangers from extremism and international terrorism. They also
exchanged their opinions on regional issues.
Thailand thanked Singapore for supporting Thailand’s role as the
ASEAN-China coordinating country, while Thailand is willing to support
Singapore's take over of this role in July. Singapore praised Thailand’s
role in hosting the Special Meeting on the Irregular Migration in the
Indian Ocean on 29 May 2015, and voiced that ASEAN can play a major role
to solve this issue.
Singapore has made up to 200,000 US dollars in donation via the ASEAN
framework in support of refugees operations in Thailand, Malaysia, and
NLA inquires into Minintry of Justice policy on ex-convicts
BANGKOK, 5 June 2015 (NNT) The National Legislative
Assembly (NLA) has inquired into the Ministry of Justice’s policy for
ex-convicts on probation.
NLA member Wallop Tungkananurak has questioned the ministry’s high rate
of early parole, despite some convicts having committed serious crimes.
He suggested that the ministry inform the public of the reasons for
releasing prisoners each year. The NLA member also called for the
ministry to make their case considerations transparent and accountable
in order to gain the public’s confidence.
Justice Minister General Paibul Khumchaya informed Mr Wallop of the
standards for early parole on good behavior. The ministry also
collaborates with the Ministry of Social Development and Human Security
and the Ministry of Interior to monitor and aid parolees.
Gen Paibul also detailed the ministry’s plan to revamp the department
tasked with monitoring the behavior of ex-convicts, as well as amend old
laws to reflect modern society. He assured that the ex-convicts are well
documented and will be supported in finding new occupations and
maintaining good behavior in society.
‘Know Global-Build Local’ fair helps OTOP entrepreneurs reach the global market
CHIANG MAI, 5 June 2015 (NNT) A ‘Know Global-Build
Local" exhibition and an accompanying workshop about export marketing
has kicked off at Chiang Mai International Convention Center, organized
by the Office of Knowledge Management and Development (OKMD) and will
continue through 9 June.
The event brings in major product distributors, fashion industry gurus
and supporting agencies to share experiences and point out the vast
opportunities that exist for Thai entrepreneurs to grow in the global
market. The aim is to further develop Thai OTOP producers to better
adjust themselves to the domestic and international demand and expanding
their customer base to prepare themselves for the ASEAN integration.
OKMD also sees an opportunity for the Thai OTOP export product value to
reach the hundred billion baht mark this year, and hopefully spur a
greater increase beyond the constant 13 percent OTOP export value growth
Dr. Apichart Prasert, OKMD Director addressed the conference and said
that entrepreneurs wanting to further expand their customers’ base need
to know more about the market they wish to go into, along with consumer
behavior, the economy, what consumers are willing to pay, and what kind
of functions and product features the consumer expects.
Besides learning about the external environment, Dr. Apichart stressed
that producers must look back to themselves and think of ways they can
improve their product quality and business practices to match the design
and the demand of consumers.
“There are still demand for Thai products in the European, US, Japan,
and ASEAN markets despite the economic slow down,” Dr. Apichart pointed
out that there are still opportunities in the market and the challenges
we are facing are not about the economic slow down but how to develop
the products and services to meet the market demand.
Lastly, for those who either can or cannot cope with the rapid
development to comply with the demand should seek help and there are
many governmental organizations and associations that entrepreneurs can
go to for guidance and support such as the Department of International
Trade Promotion (DITP) Ministry of Commerce. Dr. Apichart suggested that
business people should not work by themselves but accept outside help as
GPO to produce nicotine withdrawal herbal lozenge
BANGKOK, 5 June 2015 (NNT) The Government
Pharmaceutical Organization (GPO) has joined hands with health agencies
to produce an herbal lozenge for those wanting to quit smoking.
GPO Director Nopporn Chuenklin said the organization had been developing
an herbal lozenge made from little ironweed extract, as well as Cytisine
A recent study has suggested that oral ingestion of little ironweed
helps reduce nicotine cravings. Meanwhile, Cytisine is derived from an
alkaloid of golden rain tree and has been used to treat tobacco
addiction in Europe for more than 50 years. The GPO is preparing to
conduct a clinical study of both treatments to substantiate their safety
The project will offer smokers access to a cheap cigarette withdrawal
treatment. The herbal lozenge and Cytisine pills should be ready for
registration within two years. The Thai Health Profession Alliance
against Tobacco and Thai Health Promotion Foundation have also
contributed to the project.
Government achieves 5% growth
BANGKOK, 5 June 2015 (NNT) Deputy Prime Minister for economic affairs
M.R. Pridiyathorn Devakula has claimed that the present administration
had made the economy expand by 5% while pledging to prevent energy
shortage in Thailand.
The deputy premier on Thursday said the Thai economic growth in the
first quarter 2014 was -0.4%, the second quarter 0.9% and the third
quarter 1%. After the Prayut Chan-o-ocha took office, the fourth quarter
growth increased to 2.1% and the first quarter this year 3%. The economy
had been continuously recovering despite exports’ 2.5% negative growth
rate, the deputy PM said.
M.R. Pridiyathorn emphasized that the government sought to improve three
foundations of the Thai economy, including the industrial sector, tax
structure and digital economy. Once the three foundations were more
solid, the Thai economic growth rate would like stand at 5%, he said.
As for concerns over energy shortage, the deputy PM said it was
necessary for the government to find new energy sources, confirming he
would make sure that the best options would be selected.
Min of Energy to devise nation's first comprehensive energy blueprint
BANGKOK, 5 June 2015 (NNT) The Ministry of Energy has
held an energy seminar titled ‘Thailand Integrated Energy Blueprint’
(TIEB) for sustainable energy consumption in Thailand.
Representatives from more than 40 countries and 100 energy companies
around the world have attended the seminar to share their perspective on
Permanent Secretary of Energy Thawarat Sutabutr revealed that the TIEB
is aimed at developing a single energy blueprint, which incorporates all
existing energy plans. These plans include those for capacity
development, alternative energy, energy efficiency, and gas and oil
Mr. Thawarat added that this is the first time Thailand has initiated a
national energy strategy of this nature. The seminar is being held at
the ‘Renewable Energy 2015’energy exhibition at BITEC Bangna. He
believed the seminar will lead to energy security and sustainable energy
German demand rises for Thai pomelos
BANGKOK, 5 June 2015 (NNT) The Department of
Agriculture (DOA) has been trying to improve the quality of Kao Nam
Pueng pomelos, due to an increase in German demand.
Kao Nam Pueng pomelos have grown in popularity in Germany, which imports
a large amount from China each year.
The fruit has a color similar to honey, while having a sweeter and
crunchier consistency compared to other varieties. Kao Nam Pueng pomelos
from Thailand have earned a reputation for having superior quality to
those from China.
The DOA has been working with the Association of Fruit and Vegetable
Importers in Germany to ensure that Thai pomelos meet standards required
by the European Union (EU) and Germany.
According to DOA Director General Anan Suwannarat, more than 176,000 rai
of land have been allocated to pomelo cultivation in Thailand. An
estimated 15,000 rai have been certified by the DOA.
The DOA will submit a petition to Germany for the export of Kao Nam
Pueng pomelos from Thailand, after they undergo pesticide residue
Thailand mainly exports two varieties of pomelos, namely Thong Dee and
Kao Nam Pueng. They are shipped to China, Hong Kong and Cambodia,
generating 130 million baht per year.
PM eyes Chiang Mai as mobile cabinet meeting venue
BANGKOK, 4 June 2015 (NNT) – Prime Minister Prayut
Chan-ocha and his cabinet members are eyeing Chiang Mai as the venue for
an upcoming mobile cabinet meeting set for late this month.
According to PM Prayut, the main objectives of his visit to the northern
province are to meet local people to listen to their problems and needs
and observe the progress of development programs. Asked why Chiang Mai
was chosen, Gen Prayut explained that his cabinet members focused their
visit on major cities, as they were the centers of economic activities,
such as trade, tourism and agriculture.
In March, the premier and his cabinet members called
a mobile meeting in the seaside province Prachuap Khiri Khan where he
was updated on the city clean-up project by the provincial governor. He
also took the opportunity to meet local vendors at a community market to
collect their suggestions.
The upcoming trip to Chiang Mai will be the third one for Gen Prayut as
the leader of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO). The Prime
Minister added that he would try to travel more to different parts of
the country to observe the living condition of residents and discuss
development plans with local officials.
Thailand to host SEA Librarians meeting
BANGKOK, 4 June 2015 (NNT) – Thailand will be hosting
the 16th Congress of Southeast Asian Librarians (CONSAL XVI) to ensure
the sustainable development of libraries within the region, says Culture
The Minister of Culture Vira Rojpojchanarat has revealed that the
Department of Fine Arts will be hosting the CONSAL XVI meeting on 11-13
June 2015 at BITEC Bangna Exhibition Center. The event will also be
hosted in honor of the auspicious occasion of HRH Princess Maha Chakri
Sirindhorn’s fifth cycle birthday.
This year’s meeting will be held under the topic ‘ASEAN Aspirations:
Libraries for Sustainable Advancement’ with about 800 participants
including executives, librarians, information workers, and staffs from
education institutes from the ASEAN Countries and Timor Leste.
HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn will be presiding over the opening
ceremony of CONSAL XVI on 11 June 2015.
The Culture Minister has said that Thailand and other countries are
facing a shortage of librarians as the profession is considered
old-fashioned. The creation of library staff, and the modernization
libraries and archive systems are required. Online searching system and
electric books and documents storage will be incorporated to the
modernization plans of libraries in the region.
He has said that a model promoting reading and learning is now being
developed, which includes collecting books' information and learning
sources worldwide to encourage people to read more. Once the model
outline plan has been completed, it will then be submitted for the
PM Prayut: Reform is the heart of the country’s administration
BANGKOK, 5 June 2015 (NNT) – The Prime Minister has
stated that the reform process is the heart of the administration of
Prime Minister Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha on Thursday delivered a summary on
the government’s performances during its first year in office as he
attended the meeting with the National Legislative Assembly and the
National Reform Council.
Gen. Prayut said that the current government has been trying hard to
solve all problems Thailand has faced before he came to office, through
the effect of the interim Constitution and its Article 44.
He stated that the special power under Article 44, which replaced
Martial Law in April, was not put to use to solve all problems but to
tackle certain issues in a more timely and, yet, impartial manner.
The PM said that while the government could not do everything in one
year, it has been planning every policy to help take the country through
the reform process, which is the key to the administration of Thailand.
He added that all policies and plans will be handed over to the next
government although all the successes will require cooperation from all
CDC Spokesman believes charter drafting to finish on time
BANGKOK, 4 June 2015 (NNT) – Spokesperson for the
Constitution Drafting Committee (CDC) Kamnoon Sitthisamarn is adamant
that the draft charter will be completed as scheduled despite the
holding of a public referendum.
Mr Kamnoon revealed there have been speculations that the amendment of
the 2014 interim charter to pave the way for a public referendum would
cause a 30-day delay in the CDC’s work. In response, he expressed hope
that such a delay would not occur, assuring that the new permanent
constitution could be finished within the original timeframe specified
by the roadmap.
As for the proposed incorporation of details pertaining to national
reform into organic laws instead, Mr Kamnoon admitted no consensus has
been reached on the matter as some of the members still view reform as
an integral part of the new constitution.
The spokesperson also commented on the CDC’s retreat during June 22-July
3 in Prachuap Khiri Khan province, saying the event might need to be
rescheduled to mid-July and the number of days to be spent on holding
seminars might be cut down. Nonetheless, he affirmed CDC members are not
feeling pressured by the responsibility at hand and will continue to put
in their best efforts.
Agriculture Min admits inability to end IUU fishing by deadline
BANGKOK, 4 June 2015 (NNT) – Minister of Agriculture
and Cooperatives Petipong Pungbun Na Ayudhya has indicated a possibility
that Thailand’s effort to eradicate illegal fishing will not yet be
successful within the six-month deadline given by the European Union.
After Thailand was given a yellow card by the EU due to its failure to
comply with the Regulation on Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU)
Fishing, Mr Petipong affirmed the government has clearly demonstrated
its determination to address the issue. Personally, he believes it is
unlikely for Thailand to become completely free from the problem of IUU
fishing in a matter of only six months as demanded by the EU. However,
he insisted that the goal will eventually be achieved with the
cooperation from all sectors.
At present, the minister sees the need for the government to beef up its
control of fishing methods that can be harmful to the environment and
make amendments to the existing fishery laws for higher effectiveness.
He said the overall operational plan will also have to be improved in
order to restore the EU’s confidence while anticipating more clarity on
the plan within this month.
Regarding the management of fishery workers to prevent human
trafficking, Mr Petipong conceded it is a difficult task despite the
ministry’s cooperation with the Royal Thai Navy and the Immigration
Bureau. According to him, the inspection of fishing vessels departing
and arriving at the port is especially hard to manage while the shortage
of workers on board experienced by some operators is another issue to be
All fuel prices save diesel increased by 0.40 baht
BANGKOK, 5 June 2015, (NNT) - PTT and Bangchak have
announced a 40 satng per liter fuel price hike for Benzene and Gasohol.
The changes take effect this morning.
The new pump prices in Bangkok and its vicinity are as follows: Benzene
95 is now 35.16 baht per liter, gasohol 95 and 91 cost 29.40 baht and
28.58 baht a liter, respectively. E20 and E85 gasohol are going for
27.18 baht and 23.28 baht per liter, respectively.
Diesel price, however, remains unchanged, at 25.99 baht a liter.
The new prices already took effect this morning.
PM denies he will postpone general elections another 2 years
BANGKOK, 4 June 2015 (NNT) Prime Minister General
Prayut Chan-o-cha denied rumors that he was considering postponing
general elections another two years.
General Prayut stated that his government would prefer not to amend the
constitution in order to put off general elections. He added that it is
the public’s decision whether he should remain as the Prime Minister of
He said that unless it was being proposed to the Cabinet, the matter
would have to be considered by the same procedure used by other
administrative changes in the past.
Regarding his previous comment expressing concern for the new
administration, the Premier said it was intended to encourage all
parties to support national stability and move the country forward.
He said that if people want him to stay in power, then they must do so
by exercising their voting rights.
Army officer suspected of human trafficking denies charges
SONGKHLA, 4 June 2015 (NNT) A high-ranking army
officer allegedly involved in Rohingya human trafficking has denied all
charges, following eight hours of interrogation.
Maj Gen Manat Kongpan, who turned himself in to police yesterday, faces
13 charges, including conspiracy to traffick minors below the age of 15,
aiding the entry of illegal migrants into the Kingdom, helping to hide
corpses, and trans-national crime. Maj Gen Manat denied all charges and
authorities have refused to post bail.
Maj Gen Manat will be in custody at the Nathawee provincial court today.
He has become the most senior official suspected of involvement with
human trafficking in the South. Courts have issued arrest warrants for
84 suspects, 52 of whom were arrested. The remaining 32 suspects are
still at large.
PTT to construct floating LNG storage
BANGKOK, 4 June 2015 (NNT) PTT Plc is set for the
construction of the natural gas floating storage unit to strengthen the
stability of the natural gas system, according to the PTT CEO.
The President and CEO of PTT Plc Pailin Chuchottaworn has revealed that
the company is planning to construct two Floating Storage and
Regasification Units (FSRU) under a 200 billion baht budget. The FSRU's
LNG storage capacity is 3 million tons per unit.
The FSRU will be constructed at two locations, at Chana Distirct in
Songkhla Province, and at another location which could be at the Dawei
District in Thailand or the Pilok town in Myanmar, to reduce the effects
from the annual natural gas source maintenance and to stabilize the
natural gas system in Thailand.
PTT Plc CEO added that the construction would take 3 years, while the
unit which is pending for construction in Myanmar is awaiting approval
from Myanmar authorities. The Myanmar government has agreed with the
development of project, as Myanmar will be able to utilize the LNG for
electricity generation in the country. The PTT Plc CEO assured that the
majority of the LNG stored in Myanmar will be utilized for the energy
consumption in Thailand.
PTT Plc is now considering a construction project of a second land LNG
storage in Map Ta Phut, Rayong Province, and is currently surveying
potential locations for a third LNG storage. The PTT Plc CEO has also
stressed that Thailand needs both land and floating LNG storage units to
maximize the nation’s energy security.
Five million digital coupons used nationwide for set-top-box purchase
BANGKOK, 4 June 2015 (NNT) Over five million digital
coupons have been used nationwide to purchase normal set-top-boxes or as
discount for hybrid set-top-boxes, Secretary General of the National
Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) Takorn Tantasith
Mr.Takorn said that the NBTC has distributed a total of fourteen million
coupons, worth 690 baht each, to households in the first phase of
digital coupon distribution. Households which have not yet received the
coupons are advised to consult nearby post offices in order to use the
coupons before the expiry date.
For those who have lost their coupons can claim a new one by notifing
the loss to the police from which they will be given a notification
paper. Then the householder should bring the police document together
with a copy of ID card and house registration document to the NBTC
office. After investigation, the NBTC will send new claim document by
post which householders can use to purchase set-top-box.
Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn inaugurates Thailand’s first interdisciplinary congress
BANGKOK, 4 June 2015 (NNT) Her Royal Highness
Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn has inaugurated the first International
Congress in Interdisciplinary Approach in Thailand, addressing
sustainable research & development (R&D).
The Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn Congress was hosted by the
Interdisciplinary Committee for Research and Development of the Royal
Society of Thailand from June 3 - 4 at the IMPACT Forum, Muang Thong
Thani in Nonthaburi province.
In her inaugural speech, the Princess stressed the importance of the
interdisciplinary approach in developing Thailand’s youths. In order to
become a contributing member of society, a person must be well-versed in
various fields of knowledge, as well as be virtuous in his or her
After the opening ceremony, Her Royal Highness proceeded to the main
exhibition room to admire the various R&D booths under her patronage
before returning to the Chitralada Palace.
The Congress featured lectures from numerous academics and experts on
various fields on how an interdisciplinary approach can be utilized in
addressing various societal concerns.
Academic papers were submitted to the Congress on interdisciplinary
approaches towards meeting global challenges and development. Selected
articles will be published by Interdisciplinary Network of the Royal
Society of Thailand, while the best articles were given prizes at the
end of the Congress.
The event celebrated the Auspicious Occasion of Her Royal Highness
Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn’s 5th Cycle Birthday Anniversary and
paid tribute to the Princess’ lifelong achievements in the various
fields of academia and R&D.
It was also held to promote public awareness on the interdisciplinary
approach and to establish a network among local and international
academics and researchers.
Interdisciplinary activities are defined as involving interaction
between two or more disciplines to address various challenges and
Para rubber to be used in railway tracks
BANGKOK, 4 June 2015 (NNT) The Ministry of Science
and Technology has successfully improved the durability of para rubber
such that it can replace wooden planks used underneath train tracks.
The ministry and the Thailand Institute of Scientific and Technological
Research (TISTR) have been working with IRC (ASIA) Research Ltd. under
an agreement to raise the market value of para rubber through research
Science and Technology Minister Dr. Pichet Durongkaveroj said the new
development helps maintain rubber prices and curb expensive imports of
The increased number of railway construction projects by the State
Railway of Thailand will require as many as 25 million rubber planks,
worth a total of 1.5 billion baht.
The quality of rubber used in plank production will be further tested to
assure its durability in accordance with ISO/IEC 17025 standards.
Lotto retailers abide by 80-baht pricing rule
TRAT, 4 June 2015 (NNT) Lottery retailers across the
country obediently abide by the government’s 80-baht pricing rule, which
kicks off today.
In the eastern province of Trat, lotto buyers have reacted warmly to the
June 16 drawing by snapping up lottery tickets with their favorite
numbers. In Chonburi province, lottery buyers' reception of the 80-baht
lottery tickets is similar to their like-minded fellows' in other parts
of the country.
Down South, the newly-announced lotto pricing has led
to some retailers running out of lotto tickets. The high demand drove
some sellers to resort to buying lotto from their fellow vendors,
resulting in calls for the government to increase their quota on lottery
The issuance of 80-baht lottery tickets came after the government’s
announcement of tough measures, which included assets scrutiny and
prosecution, against uncooperative sellers.
Min of Labor hopes Maritime Labor Act will improve conditions of workers at sea
BANGKOK, 4 June 2015 (NNT) The Ministry of Labor is
determined to improve working conditions for maritime laborers in
According to Labor Minister General Surasak Kanjanarat, a meeting was
recently held to follow up on the drafting of the 2015 Maritime Labor
Act. The meeting was attended by private sector representatives and
government officials from the Ministries of Public Health, Foreign
Affairs and Transport.
The bill is expected to be enforced in February next year.
Each ministry is responsible for drafting 65 articles relevant to their
line of work. The law will reflect international standards stipulated
under Maritime Labor Convention 2006.
General Surasak said he hopes the Act will eventually standardize the
maritime industry and promote economic security for Thailand. Workers
can expect to receive fair employment and work in a safe and clean
environment under the new law.
CP ALL presents to government 14 million baht in donation for Nepal quake victims
BANGKOK, 4 June 2015 (NNT) Thailand’s leading
convenient store operator, CP ALL, has presented its cash donation to
the government who will deliver the sum to Nepal for victims of the
recent deadly earthquake.
Minister of Prime Minister’s Office M.L. Panadda Diskul welcomed Mr.
Korsak Chairasmisak, Chairman of Executive Committee of CP All Public
Company Limited, and other company executives who visited the Parliament
to meet Prime Minister Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha.
The CP All management’s visit was intended to present the money which
members of the public have donated through all 7-Eleven stores and
Counter Service units operated by the company across the country.
A total amount of 14 million baht has been collected under the
government’s initiated campaign “Hua Jai Thai - Song Pai Nepal”, which
literally translates into “the Hearts of Thailand - Delivered to Nepal”.
Along with donations through other state and private agencies, the Prime
Minister will deliver a total of 4 million dollars to Nepal on Thursday
to help the people of Nepal who have been hit by the deadly quake.
The Prime Minister assures government to do everything the people wish for
BANGKOK, 4 June 2015 (NNT) The Prime Minister has assured that the
government will be doing everything that the people should wish for.
Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha, the Prime Minister and the chief of the National
Council for Peace and Order, told the meeting he had with heads of all
ministerial offices on Wednesday that the current government has always
been doing its jobs in such a way that the public would have wanted.
Among some of the policies the government has implemented are the
control of goods prices through the reduction of manufacturing costs of
general businesses, Gen. Prayut said.
For large-sized businesses, the PM said that there have been pushes of
measures which are in line with the special economic zone policy and the
plan to help Thailand get ready for the ASEAN Economic Community
integration and for fierce competition in the world market.
The Premier also instructed all ministries to strategize more plans to
accelerate the implementation of future policies while solving all
problems Thailand had experienced before May 22 of last year.
Energy reform watch group wants govt. to use Section 44 with Thai energy crisis
BANGKOK, 3 June 2015 (NNT) The Thai Energy Reform
Watch Group has called on the government to enforce Section 44 of the
temporary charter to tackle the energy crisis in Thailand and proposed a
draft of the Petroleum Act.
70 representatives of the group on Wednesday announced the group’s
proposed solutions to the Thai energy crisis. The solutions address
national energy issues including the soon-to-expire petroleum
concession, the petroleum potential of the Gulf of Thailand and the
Petroleum Act. The group suggested that Section 44 of the temporary
constitution be enforced to help prevent energy shortage when the
The group also made suggestions on the government’s adjustment to the
national energy price structure as well as an increase in LPG price in
the transport sector.
The representatives said the group would submit their petroleum proposal
to the prime minister on Thursday at Government House.
Lottery Office poised to campaign against uncooperative lottery ticket sellers
BANGKOK, 3 June 2015 (NNT) Different agencies are
mobilizing their efforts to strictly enforce laws and rules in a latest
bid to regulate the lottery ticket price.
Starting from June 3 onwards, the Government Lottery Office (GLO) will
dispatch its data-collection teams comprising peace-keeping authorities
from the Army Region 1 to gather information on lottery ticket retailers
as well as on foundations and organizations engaged in the lottery
Meanwhile, Metropolitan police has set up 10 ad hoc teams of military
officials and police tasked with following up on complaints of
overpriced lottery tickets. Operators are now required to sell lotto at
80 baht per pair, starting from June 1.
The GLO will also cooperate with different agencies such as the Revenue
Department, the Department of Special Investigation (DSI) and the
Ministry of Interior to carry out a campaign against overcharging
The GLO board will this month hold a press conference with the Revenue
Department’s director-general and the representative of the Ministry of
Justice to announce their joint crackdown on uncooperative distributers
of all levels. The move also involves assets scrutiny.
Army officer suspected of human trafficking turns himself in to police custody
BANGKOK, 3 May 2015 (NNT) A high-ranking army
officer allegedly involved in human trafficking
in the South has turned himself in to the police
Maj Gen Manat Kongpan gave himself up to
National Police Chief Pol Gen Somyot Pumpanmuang
and his deputy Pol Gen Ake Angsananont.
The Deputy National Police Chief said Maj Gen
Manat had yet to express his intention to post
bail, adding that any bail request must be
considered by police and prosecutors. Maj Gen
Manat’s supervisor was informed of his arrest.
The suspect will be transferred to Songkhla
Province, where he will be informed of his
charges and face an interrogation by Provincial
Police Region 9 and Songkhla police. The staff
judge advocate and his lawyer are allowed to
observe the interrogation.
Maj Gen Manat has become the most senior
official accused of involvement with Rohingya
migrant trafficking. The Nathawee provincial
court earlier this week approved an arrest
warrant for him.
BMA donates 2.1m baht relief fund to Nepal
BANGKOK, 3 June 2015 (NNT) The Bangkok Metropolitan
Administration (BMA) has handed over a 2.1 million baht donation to
those affected from the earthquake in Nepal.
The Governor of Bangkok Sukhumbhand Paribatra, along with the BMA
executives, handed over the 2,108,981.41 baht donation as part of the
Nepal Earthquake Relief Fund to the Nepali Ambassador to Thailand Khaga
Nath Abhikari at the Bangkok City Hall.
The Bangkok Governor has said that the BMA Permanent-Secretary initiated
the donation account in wake of the earthquake incident in Nepal on 25
April 2015 as the main account for the BMA employees along with the
general public to donate.
He has said that although the earthquake disaster has already subsided,
but restoration operations and the mental rehabilitation of the victims
will require time. Therefore, Bangkok is willing to provide assistance
and this will help strengthen the relationship between Thailand and
Nepal more in the future.
3 Rivers meeting to focus on government’s work, not constitution
BANGKOK, 3 June 2015 (NNT) The meeting between the
three main reform bodies will focus on the progress of the government’s
work, not the constitution drafting process.
National Legislative Assembly (NLA) First Vice President Surachai
Liengboonlertchai has revealed that the meeting between the NLA, the
National Reform Council (NRC) and the Cabinet is meant to create mutual
understanding in each body’s role in the country’s reform process.
The press has also been invited to observe in the meeting, while the
format is in the form of a seminar discussing the government’s
achievements since assuming power a year ago. The meeting will not
discuss the constitution drafting process.
Mr Surachai also revealed that the Cabinet has yet to send an amendment
proposal to extend the amendment period of the second draft of the
constitution from 60 days to 90 days. However, once the proposals has
been submitted, the NLA will be able to pass the amendment within 15
NRC committee on energy reform delivers amendment proposals
BANGKOK, 3 June
2015 (NNT) The
has heard a
The proposal was
impact and to
extent to which
the public is
of roles is
meant to enhance
the event of
projects in the
that the Senate
be reduced from
200 members to
150 and include
a Senator from
He added that
not have to
elected by the
people in their
Rare fish go on display in Yala
YALA, 3 June 2015 (NNT) Yala Provincial
Fisheries Office is putting rare and beautiful
fish on display, as part of the anniversary
celebration of the city pillar shrine.
More than 40 species of rare and exotic fish are
currently showcased at Yala City Hall, where the
city pillar shrine celebration and Yala Red
Cross fair are taking place. The exhibition has
captured the interest of a large number of
Yala Provincial Fisheries Office intends to use
the fish exhibition to raise awareness for the
marine environment and spark interest in
Highlights include the fish spa and the display
of river carps, Yala’s local fish. Known locally
as Kelah, the fish is an endangered species.
Experts are attempting save the species and
advocate their consumption due to their high
Over 12,000 trademark and IP registration requests made in Q1
BANGKOK, 3 June 2015, (NNT) Department of
Intellectual Property Director-General Malee
Choklamlert has reported that 12,198 trademark
and Intellectual Property (IP) registration
requests were made during the first quarter of
2015, an increase of 35.9 percent from the same
period last year.
She attributed the jump to the government’s
policies to promote brand name development and
product differentiation, which benefit
The Department Director-General indicated the
majority of the registered trademarks were
related to laundry products, cosmetics, aroma
products, leatherware, shoes, rice, tea, coffee,
sugar powder, snacks, electrical appliances &
tools, veterinary tools, and healthcare
Ms. Malee said her department would promote
agricultural goods registered as Geographical
Indication (GI) products abroad. She said GI
goods are unique value-added items that can only
be produced locally.
Thailand is poised to penetrate GI product
markets in China and ASEAN nations. Currently,
these GI goods include Hommali Jasmine Rice from
Pattalung, Saraburi rice, sticky rice from
Kalasin, pomelo from Chainat & Nakhon Pathom,
and tamarind from Petchabun.
Rural road networks improved for Border SEZs
BANGKOK, 3 June 2015 (NNT) The Department of
Rural Roads takes the initiative to support
investment atmosphere in the special economic
zones (SEZ) by developing rural road networks
Director-General Daroon Saengchai said the
department has drawn up 17 projects with a total
investment of 8.68 billion baht to facilitate
easier access to the special economic zones. The
projects can be divided into road construction
that is directly connected with the zones and
the ones that support future trade and
investment expansion of the SEZ.
The Department also unveiled projects to
renovate 25 roads leading to various special
So far the government has designated special
economic zones in 10 border provinces of Tak,
Sakaeo, Trat, Mukdahan, Nong Khai, Songkhla,
Kanjanaburi, Chiang Rai, Nakhon Phanom and
General Chatchai selected as Chairman of the SEZ PR Subcommittee
BANGKOK, 3 June 2015 (NNT) The Committee on Special Economic
Zone (SEZ) has appointed Commerce Minister General Chatchai
Sarikalya as the chairman of the SEZ Public Relations
The announcement was made by Deputy Commerce Minister Apiradee
Tantraporn, who clarified that the new panel is responsible for
giving suggestions on marketing and handling of public relations
affairs. She said the PR Subcommittee would promote investment
in various special economic zones among local and international
Ms. Apiradee said several road shows encouraging foreign
investors to explore opportunities in the special economic zones
will be held in various nations. At the same time, a series of
seminars will be arranged in the Kingdom to attract local
Ms. Apiradee added that various media outlets, social media and
billboard signs will be used to advertise SEZ investments.
Flood wall around Siriraj Hospital inspected in preparation for rainy season
BANGKOK, 3 June 2015 (NNT) Bangkok City Hall is carrying out an
inspection of the flood wall around Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok
in preparation for influxes of rainwater during the rainy
Bangkok Governor M.R. Sukhumbhand Paribatra personally inspected
the recently completed flood wall in the vicinity of Siriraj
Hospital. The top of the flood wall stood three meters above
mean sea level. Although City Hall officials believe the height
of the flood wall would be adequate for keeping out floodwater,
they were concerned with the low water level in the Chao Phraya
River at present. To prevent a weakening of the flood wall due
to the low water level, officials were reinforcing the bases of
the flood wall with large stones.
The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration has also readied flood
response teams that can be dispatched to problem areas around