Thailand to host Asian Science Camp 2015, featuring international award-winning scientists
BANGKOK, 24 July 2015 (NNT) Three ministries have
co-organized the Asian Science Camp 2015 in Thailand set during 2-8
August 2015, with 7 award-winning scientists participating as guest
speakers with 265 youth participants from 29 Asia-Pacific countries.
The Promotion of Academic Olympiad and Development of Science Education
Foundation under the patronage of HRH Princess Galyani Vadhana Krom
Luang Naradhiwas Rajanagarindra (POSN) Charas Suwanwela has said that
Thailand has requested to be the host country for Asian Science Camp in
2015, which corresponds to the auspicious occasion of HRH Princess Maha
Chakri Sirindhorn’s, the royal principle of the POSN, fifth cycle
He has said that the camp will inspire creativity among scientifically
gifted Asian-Pacific youths. Participants will attend lectures,
discussions, and engage in conversation with world class scientists, and
cooperate with youths from other nations to enhance the region's younger
Guest speakers in this event are Nobel-winning and leading scientists in
Chemistry, Anatomy, Medicine, Mathematics, and Physics from Taiwan,
Germany, Israel, Russia, Japan, and Thailand.
The Minister of Education Admiral Narong Pipatanasai has said that this
event will help increase the quality of Thai youths to reach
international standards, in line with the government’s policy to develop
human resources in science, technology, and innovations.
The slots open to 265 young participants at the Asian Science Camp 2015
are compatible for high school students up to students studying in the
sophomore year of university from 29 Asia-Pacific countries. Thailand,
being the host country can submit up to 40 participants to attend this
event, based on each participant's talents in science and technology,
while participants should be proficient in the English language.
Meanwhile, the Minister of Science and Technology Pichet Durongkaveroj
has said that the event will take place at Thailand Science Park, Khlong
Luang Distirct, in Pathum Thani, which is set to become a learning
center with the concentration on science and technology. High security
standards will be enforced to accommodate the international participants
during the event.
HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn will be presiding over the opening
ceremony of Asian Science Camp on 3 August 2015, and will give a special
lecture that will receive a live television broadcast by the NBT
channel, and on the www.asc2015.posn.or.th website.
Youth, students, and the general public can follow the developments of
this event and watch the broadcast of this activity on nstda channel
(http://nstdachannel.tv), which will also broadcast the recording of the
event after the Science Camp has concluded.
Thailand-Myanmar cooperation successfully halves Malaria cases
CHIANG RAI, 24 July 2015 (NNT) Thailand and Myanmar
cooperation during the past three years has halved the number Malaria
patients, granted better access to medication for tuberculosis patients,
and provided a better supply of anti-HIV medicine, the Thai Minister of
Public Health says.
The Minister of Public Health Rajata Rajatanavin today co-chaired the
opening ceremony of the 2nd Myanmar-Thailand Health Collaborative
Ministerial Meeting with Myanmar’s Minister of Health Than Aung at Dusit
Island Resort, Chiang Rai. The ceremony addressed the outcome of both
countries' cooperation, and discussed the endorsement of the future
cooperation plan in 2016-2018.
The Thai Minister said that the Ministry is aiming to enhance the
healthcare system along border areas to help improve the health and
safety of the public, especially through the disease prevention system
and upholding food and drug standards. He stated that good multinational
public health systems would help drive forward the ASEAN Community's
The cooperation between Thailand and Myanmar from the 2013 Memorandum of
Understanding has been satisfactory. Malaria contraction figures were
halved in 16 provinces of Myanmar, while the number of malaria patients
dropped to 20,000 in 2014 from the recorded 45,000 patients in 2013.
The result was due to the contributed from the establishment of 199
malaria clinics along the Myanmar border to provide faster diagnosis and
treatments. However, the disease has become more resistant to the
current medication due to the free moment of people in areas such as the
Dawei and Myawaddy Special Economic Zones.
On tuberculosis issues, The number of tuberculosis patients who now have
access to medication has increased from 4,882 to 5,523 persons in 2014.
Up to 80 percent of the patients use their medicine regularly. Thailand
and Myanmar's cooperation has also provided access to anti-HIV medicine
for HIV patients, which has greatly improved their livelihoods.
The cooperation also includes the simultaneous patients referring system
between the twin hospitals in four provinces, while the authorities now
have to be more strict in regulating food and drug standards, including
herbal medicines. Authorities have enhanced laboratory tests at
Myawaddy, Tachileik, Dawei, and Kawthaung to allow molecular level
inspections that will improve the public's wellbeing, while other forms
of cooperation involves academic cooperation, cooperated research, and
Future cooperation and operations for 2016-2018 are now being discussed
to push forward a concrete cooperation plan to benefit the people of
RID continues cloudseeding in the Northeast, Central Plains struggles with drought
BURIRAM, 24 July 2015 (NNT) The Royal Irrigation
Department (RID) will carry on with its rainmaking operations in the
Northeast, despite the arrival of rainfalls. Meanwhile, farmers in
drought-hit Central Plains are still grappling with the extended
The RID explained that rainmaking operations must continue in the
Northeast, as rainfall has yet to reach some areas. Water reserves in
the upper Northeast are most abundant, with ample supplies in the
central Northeast. However, the lower Northeast, where rice farming is
most prevalent, remains parched. Irrigation and administrative officials
have surveyed areas in need of precipitation to adjust cloudseeding
Meanwhile, rice growers in the drought-hit Central region continue to
hold out against severe drought. Some farmers in Kamphaeng Phet province
have risked sowing their fields, although spotty rainfall occurred just
a week ago. Others have opted for non-farming jobs for the time being.
In Nakhon Sawan province, a number of farmers are hastily diverting
water from public sources to irrigate their paddies, after the
provincial irrigation office decided to open sluice gates to help local
agriculture. Kamphaeng Phet and Nakhon Sawan are among the four
provinces in the Central region hardest hit by the dry season. The other
two provinces are Phichit and Uthai Thani.
Free bike check-up services popular ahead of Bike for Mom event
BANGKOK, 24 July 2015 (NNT) The Department of Skill
Development (DSD) has indicated that a number of bicycle owners have
availed themselves of the free bike check-up services being provided by
the department ahead of the Bike for Mom activity.
In preparation for the Bike for Mom campaign in commemoration of the
83rd birthday anniversary of Her Majesty the Queen, skill development
offices and institutes nationwide have been offering bicycle maintenance
and repair services to the public since the beginning of this month. The
services are being provided for free under the "Fix Bike for Mom"
project initiated by the Ministry of Labor.
DSD Director-General ML Puntrik Smiti reported that so far about 320
bikes have been brought in by participants of the Bike for Mom event.
The services given out include tire repair and brake testing. The
Director-General expects more people to use the services until August
16, the day the biking activity will be held.
On the day, the DSD will also set up four service points along the
biking route, namely the Royal Plaza, the Royal Thai Army Sports Club on
Vibhavadi Rangsit Road, Kasetsart University and the Eleventh Infantry
Regiment King's Guard.
Public Relations Department to expand audience base for radio program “Our Parliament”
BANGKOK, 24 July 2015 (NNT) The Deputy Secretary
General of the House of Representatives has tasked the various divisions
of the country’s government radio programs with expanding their audience
base for the government’s show “Our Parliament”
The objective of the program is to enhance the public’s understanding of
the country’s legislative process, and how useful legislation can
improve their lives.
The government’s Public Relations Department currently operates 50 radio
stations in 44 provinces across the country
Ministry of Sports to be established within 3-5 years
BANGKOK, 24 July 2015 (NNT) The National Reform
Council (NRC) has approved of the report by its sports committee, with
an expectation to establish a standalone Ministry of Sports within 3-5
Chairman Gen Yuthasak Sasiprapha presided over a seminar held by the NRC
committee on sports reform, during which he delivered a keynote address
on public input towards sports reform. According to him, based on the
committee’s discussions and the public’s input, the committee detailed
eight major ways to reform the country’s sports sector.
The eight-point proposal includes establishing a national sports
university, a national sports committee, a national sports science
institution, the reforming of sports infrastructure, supporting the
sports industry, passing legislation to facilitate sports development,
and to establish a standalone Ministry of Sports.
Gen Yuthasak stressed that the NRC has already given positive feedback
towards its committee’s proposal, and that he expects the Ministry of
Sports to be established within 3-5 years.
PM to consider demands from anti-coal power plant activists in Krabi
BANGKOK, 24 July 2015 (NNT) Prime Minister Gen.
Prayut Chan-o-cha has agreed to the demands from anti-coal power plant
activists in Krabi province.
An Andaman protection network earlier today submitted a letter to
National Legislative Assembly member Wallop Tangkananurak, petitioning
the government to halt preparations of the power plant's Environmental
Impact Assessment (EIA), postpone August 5 construction bidding
indefinitely, and establish a joint committee comprised of
representatives from related state agencies, local businesses and civil
Gen. Prayut explained that the government has yet to begin the project,
pending an EIA and Environmental Health Impact Assessment (EHIA). The
premier said further talks between the government and the Andaman
protection network will be held to conclude on the issue.
Monsoon breaks drought in the Northeast, farmers resume crop cultivation
BANGKOK, 24 July 2015 (NNT) Farmers in several
Northeastern provinces have rejoiced over the continuous rainfall that
has replenished their rice fields.
In Srisaket, farmers are beginning to remove rice saplings from their
rice paddies, as the water levels rise quickly. They will later be
replanted when the next rice growing season officially begins.
These farmers said they have been waiting for rain for nearly two
months. More than three million rai of rice paddies in Surin province
have received rainfall over the past two weeks.
However, there is not enough sugar cane to feed the elephants, as most
sugar cane trees died before the monsoon. Surin province is famous for
its elephants. Many elephant herders ended up spending nearly 10,000
baht a month to feed the animals.
As for Bueng Kan province, many species of fish have reportedly been
migrating upstream to canals, which were previously parched due to the
lack of rain. Many local farmers turned to fishing to supplement their
Australian Ambassador pays official visit to PM's Office
BANGKOK, 24 July 2015 (NNT) The Australian Ambassador
has visited the Minister to the Prime Minister’s Office M.L. Panadda
Disakul, saying he hopes the political situation in Thailand will return
to normal soon.
M.L. Panadda welcomed the Australian Ambassador, His Excellency Mr. Paul
Robilliard who was assigned to the post in Thailand last year. H.E. Mr.
Robilliard expressed his concerns over the political climate, during his
He encouraged the Thai people to stay united until the situation returns
to normal. The Australian Ambassador also sought cooperation from the
Thai public sector in order to help reduce the number of road fatalities
According to the World Health Organization, Thailand is listed among the
top three nations with the world's highest number of road accident
deaths each year.
Moreover, H.E. the Australian Ambassador discussed with M.L. Panadda the
possibility of establishing a joint education program between the two
Customs Department to provide customs charge paying service through credit and debit cards
BANGKOK, 24 July 2015, (NNT) The Customs Department
will start offering customs charge paying service through credit and
debit cards at the customs office in Suvarnabhumi International Airport
from September 1st, 2015 onward.
Customs Department Director-General Dr. Somchai Sujjapongse said his
department signed a Memorandum of Understanding on providing the service
with Krung Thai Bank Pcl. and Kasikorn Bank Pcl.
He said the service would greatly facilitate the tax paying process,
providing tax payers with another easy channel to customs charges
Passengers subjected to pay customs charges would be able to do so
through either credit or debit cards from September 1st, 2015, onward at
Suvarnabhumi International Airport. The service will eventually be
extended to other airport customs offices and customs offices along the
border provinces at a later date.
The department aims at recruiting other commercial banks to join the
Queen Sirikit National Institute of Child Health awarded best UNPSA 2015
BANGKOK, 24 July 2015 (NNT) The Department of Medical Services
(DMS) has received the best public service award from the United
Nations (UN) for its ‘Treat and Teach, No Child Patient Left
Behind’ campaign this year.
Director of the Queen Sirikit National Institute of Child Health
Dr. Siraporn Sawasdiworn, said the campaign is based on Her
Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn’s concept of
promoting holistic school in hospital.
It has been operated since 1995 under the collaboration of the
Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Science and
Technology. Child patients with chronic diseases are given an
opportunity to receive an education during their long treatment
in hospital through an e-learning approach.
There are currently 29 hospitals in Thailand that have adopted
the holistic school method. 95% of 50,000 child patients
entering the program each year are able to return to school
without academic struggle.
Trat holds a workshop on mushroom growing during rainy season
TRAT, 24 July 2015 (NNT) The Agriculture and
Cooperatives Office in Trat Province is holding a workshop educating
farmers about growing various types of mushrooms. The move is expected
to generate a decent amount of supplementary income during the rainy
The workshop is being held at the OTOP Center in Nam Chiew Sub-district,
Laem Ngob District. A large number of local agriculturalists are
participating in the workshop. Thailand has a total of 647 strains of
edible mushrooms. As the plants are rich in protein and iron, some
mushrooms are also used as medicine or extracted as color dye.
Mushrooms are also natural digestive agents, helping other crops to
grow. They act as indicators of environment quality. Famous mushrooms
being featured at the course are hard mushroom, white mushroom and black
mushroom. At the workshop, officials demonstrated how mushrooms are
grown on a log which is fit for household consumption. Growers can use
multiple logs to mass produce mushrooms for commercial purpose.
Culture Ministry establishes 'Center of Thai Inspiration'
BANGKOK, 24 July 2015 (NNT) The Ministry of Culture
has established the Center of Thai Inspiration or ‘Ban Dan Thai Center’
in the compound of Ratchadamnoen Contemporary Art Center in Bangkok.
According to Permanent Secretary for Culture Apinan Poshyananda, the new
center's objectives include giving advice on developing souvenirs
highlighting creative cultural concepts for industrial production and
managing cultural attractions for the businesses.
He said it is the new agency's policy to deploy Thailand's leading
designers to inspire business operators across the nation, to create
value added products featuring the uniqueness of Thai culture.
According to the official, starting from this coming August 7th, the
Ratchadamnoen Contemporary Art Center will organize presentations about
designing souvenirs with Thai uniqueness. The event will showcase
prototype signature souvenirs from the 77 provinces of Thailand. In
addition, the exhibition will host a seminar on designing Thai souvenirs
by the nation's leading artists and designers.
Interested individuals can attend the event free of charge.
Road to Royal Thai Army Stadium to be partially closed this weekend
BANGKOK, 23 July 2015 (NNT) The police will close
outbound part of Vibhavadi Rangsit Road from the Veterans General
Hospital to Sutthisan Intersection this weekend to facilitate thousands
of “Bike for Mom” participants who will pick up commemorative t-shirts
and royal pins at Royal Thai Army Stadium, according to Police
spokesperson Pol Lt Gen Prawut Thavornsiri.
Closure of the road will begin at midnight of July 25 until the
distribution ends. Pol Lt-Gen Prawut believed that the participants,
numbering 40,000 in total, will begin queuing up before dawn. Three
hundred policemen will be deployed for traffic management.
For those who will drive their cars on the days, police have prepared
four parking locations opposite the stadium. They are parking lots in
the National Defence College, the NBT headquarters, Surasakmontree
School and Rajamangala University of Technology.
However, the car parks can handle only a thousand cars. He therefore
advised people to take public transport to the Victory Monument, or Mo
Chit Bus Station, or Chatuchak Market where shuttle buses will provide
free service during 7 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Bangkok launches ‘Health is Yours’ public health innovation event
BANGKOK, 13 July 2015 (NNT) The Bangkok Metropolitan
Administration (BMA) has opened the ‘Health is Yours’ event to exhibit
medical health innovations and serve as a stage to exchange ideas on
The Deputy Governor of Bangkok Pusadee Tamthai presided over the opening
of the ‘Health is Yours’ event, organized by the BMA’s Bureau of Health
at Prince Palace Hotel, Bangkok.
She has said that this event will encourage the creativity of staff in
healthcare organizations, initiating their ideas into inventions and
useful practices to better serve the general public, in keeping with the
Governor’s intention to make Bangkok a metropolitan of happiness.
Th event features exhibitions and displays of medical and public health
innovations, and also serves as a platform to exchange ideas on
healthcare. Both the government and private sectors will be
participating at the event.
The ‘Health is Yours’ event will run from 23-24 July 2015, with various
activities such as the ‘Creating good health by yourself’ and ‘The
development of healthcare services in urban areas’ seminar, as well as a
presentation on innovations, and an exhibition of active healthcare
NRC claims new media bill will not hinder independence
BANGKOK, 23 July 2015 (NNT) The National Reform
Council (NRC) members says the new media act will prevent interference
from the government or from any particular groups.
NRC members Boonlert Kachayuthadet and Nimit Sitthitrai have addressed
the concerns put forward by four media associations, namely the Thai
Journalist Association, the National Press Council of Thailand, the Thai
Broadcast Journalists Association, and the News Broadcasting Council of
Thailand, who had previously issued a statement disapproving the
Freedom, Ethic, and Professional Standards Promotion Act on New Media,
which was endorsed by the NRC.
The media associations stated that the new law would not facilitate
media reform, but instead will allow government and capitalists to
assert absolute control over the media.
In response, the NRC members stated that the new law, including
establishment of the national, regional, and provincial levels of media
ethic organizations will enhance the performance of the media. The
members added that the media professional development fund will not
hinder the media's freedom, as the fund is not sponsored by the
In addition, Mr. Nimit has said that media on the local levels should
work to promote reformation, while this new act will allow local media
become more recognized by the society as a honorable profession.
He has added that the neglect of local media, despite the legislation of
the new law, media reforms are doomed to fail.
First set of data from Pluto unveil great discoveries
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) The National Astronomical
Research Institute of Thailand (Public Organization) (NARIT) together
with Chulalongkorn University held a press conference on the 22th July
2015 at Chulalongkorn university, announcing the discoveries after the
NASA’s New Horizons shuttle has orbited Pluto on the 14th July 2015.
Despite the distance between the shuttle and Earth is now over 5 billion
kilometers, data captured by the shuttle are still being sent back to
With just only one percent of the total data transferred back to Earth,
Dr. Wiphu Rujopakarn, Chulalongkorn University Professor, a Physics
specialist who conducted the press conference announced the exciting
discoveries evident from the shuttle's date still floating 5 billion
The shuttle passed Pluto and is now embarking on its new mission of
space exploration beyond Pluto. The shuttle will continue to transfer
the rest of the data gathered from the dwarf planet.
From the first set of data Dr. Wiphu pointed that what humans have
predicted Pluto would be have changed forever, stating that Pluto is
remarkably flat, with less craters than expected. This contradicts
mainstream scientific belief that Pluto’s surface would be similiar to
the moon. This new information may leads to the confirmation that Pluto
is either still geologically active or possesses an atmosphere that
weathers out craters.
The ice plains of the planet is also a completely new discovery, which
may lead to scientists theorizing that something has been changing
during the past 100 million years, which is very recent time-frame,
considering the solar system is calculated to be 4.5 billion years old.
Pluto has a relatively thick atmosphere, while the density of Pluto’s
atmosphere is only about one hundred thousandth of the Earth’s
atmospheric density. Pluto's atmosphere also extends up to about the
range of 1,000 miles above the surface, which is very far considering
the size of Pluto’s radius. The planet itself also houses a very small
Dr. Wiphu also pointed to the rugged surface means mountains and
terrains and that there are many dry ice mountains with a height of
between 10 to 15 kilometers. Scientists projected that there should be a
lot of ice, especially frozen carbon dioxide and methane gas.
While exploring the dwarf planet, the shuttle also explored the surface
of Pluto’s moon (Sharon) and found that the moon also houses cliffs 7-9
As there more images and data to are sent back to Earth, the New
Horizon's 700 million U.S. dollar project has already brought much joy
and new insights to the world's scientists. Many people have raised the
question that how are these discoveries helping people?
Dr. Wiphu pointed that by understanding more about how the solar system
forms by looking at various bodies, scientists will understand the big
picture more. He says scientific knowledge on solar system formation has
been enhanced. Citing photographic evidence he confirms similarities of
planets located at the different parts of the solar system, and added
that "we have a better picture of how solar system forms, and since
everything forms together in one single cloud that collapses into the
There will now be more clues to age old questions such as host fast will
did the Earth take to cool down, and when did life begin, he says.
Each star in the galaxy is like our solar system's sun, with two hundred
billion stars in our Milky Way galaxy alone. He concluded that the
incomprehensible size of the universe is so vast that we will never be
able to completely explore its entirety.
BMA pushes ahead with cycling campaign
BANGKOK, 23 July 2015 (NNT) The Bangkok Metropolitan
Administration (BMA) has pushed ahead with its campaign to promote
cycling in the capital.
The BMA said the focus of the campaign is to ensure cycling in Bangkok
is safe for everyone. Measures will be implemented to reduce the use of
cars and to stress the benefits of bicycles to travel around the
More bike routes, including paths at Rattanakosin Island, have been
built in line with the campaign. Barriers will also be set up to
increase safety for cyclists.
The BMA will stage annual events such as Car-Free Day to encourage the
use of public transport. Several major roads are usually closed to all
motorized vehicles, so up to 20,000 cyclists can form a convoy and bike
Yala fruit orchards under wild elephant siege
YALA, 23 July 2015 (NNT) Community leaders and
village defense volunteers have carried out a survey of damaged fruit
orchards in Mae Wat subdistrict in the southernmost province of Yala,
following recent destruction by wild elephants.
An unknown number of wild elephants have invaded local farmland to feast
on their fruits. The damage extended over 10 rai of fruit orchards.
Villagers initially spotted a herd of wild elephants in their
neighborhood a week ago, but were unable to drive them back to the
forests for fear of being attacked.
The pachyderms are believed to have migrated from Malaysia. During this
period, the neighboring country has granted concessions to loggers for
large swaths of forest. Locals assume that the sound of chainsaws may
have scared the animals away and driven them into the Thai territory.
Village heads are compiling damage reports to seek aid from the
provincial administrative organization.
Chonburi water sources intact amidst drought
CHONBURI, 23 July 2015 (NNT) The Irrigation Office of
the eastern province of Chonburi reports that the discharge of water
supplies still operates as normal despite a shortfall in raindrops.
The Regional Irrigation Office 9 revealed the amount of rainfalls since
the dry season has dropped by eight percent compared to the same period
last year. Nevertheless, the irrigation office’s water management plan
can be carried out as usual.
According to officials, the seaside province has nine reservoirs. Each
of them contains water amounting to 19-41 percent of their capacity,
which is enough for farming and consumption. The Regional Irrigation
Office 9 has begun to cut its water supplies now that agricultural zones
have experienced more rainfalls.
As for the long-term flood and drought alleviation plans, the Royal
Irrigation Department has finished the construction of a diversion pipe
to channel away the excessive water in eastern Bangkok during the rainy
season and to direct up to 70 million cubic meters of water into
Chonburi during the dry season. The new pipe is ready for use in this
Mae Fah Luang Airport steps up security against firearms carrying
CHIANG RAI, 23 July 2015 (NNT) Mae Fah Luang Chiang
Rai International Airport has reportedly increased its security measures
in compliance with the Airport of Thailand's policy and the airport
codes of the International Civil Aviation Organization.
Chiang Rai Airport officials said those entering the airport are
subjected to thorough inspection while loading of luggage will be
strictly scanned and labeled. Passengers will be scanned at six spots,
firstly upon entering the passenger terminal, then at the counter of
boarding pass issuance, followed by inspection prior to the point of
x-ray scanning, then at the scanning point of personal belongings, at
the home-room inspection by airline officials, and finally at the gate
before boarding the aircraft.
The airport believes that the new safety policy will significantly boost
security and effectively prevent passengers from bringing firearms
aboard the aircraft. It said the procedure might cause inconvenience to
some, but the regulations would ensure safety for all passengers.
EC Chairman says it’s everyone's duty to ensure transparent elections
BANGKOK, 23 July 2015 (NNT) Election Commission (EC) Chairman Suphachai
Somcharoen has indicated it is every body’s duty to promote transparent
The EC Chairman said in a recent seminar on fair elections that the
objective of the election is not to prevent corruption but to echo the
voice of the people.
It is also a key mechanism, under the democratic principles, to select
good individuals to represent people to work in the Parliament. The
draft charter has been revised several times to make sure it will pave
the way for the transparent elections.
He added that whatever the election model Thailand will adopt, it is
important to take into consideration the pros and cons of each model. It
should serve no one’s but public interest. Measures should also be in
place to assure no vote buying can be committed.
Sing Buri Prison holds a disaster prevention drill
SING BURI, 23 July 2015, (NNT) Sing Buri Provincial
Prison held a disaster prevention drill, in accordance with the
Department of Corrections policy of preparing officials for emergency
The event was staged by the warden and her officers, simulating a scene
in which an inmate took a civilian and an official as hostages in
exchange for a clear passage from the prison. The criminal was described
as being stressed over the legal proceeding for his case and the lack of
According to the warden, Sing Buri provincial prison is handling a large
number of inmates. Thus, opportunities are high for a prison mutiny or a
tension induced by density factor. She said the drill would prepare
personnel for the worst case scenario and enable them to act efficiently
in containing the situation as quickly as possible.
Chiang Mai Uni researchers invent a stove fueled by corn stalks
CHIANG MAI, 23 July 2015, (NNT) Chiang Mai
University's Faculty of Agriculture researchers have invented a stove
fueled by corn stalks, in the hope of replacing conventional household
The so-called bio stove is being assembled from common materials such as
clay, earth, wood chips and cement, explained the inventors, adding that
it is fueled by corn stalks.
According to the researchers, the stove is simple to construct and use,
while a kilogram of corn stalks would produce 30 minutes of flame
suitable for cooking. They estimate a household would need 10-15
kilograms of corn stalks for daily cooking.
The stove was featured in a fair promoting inventions for community use,
at Chiang Mai International Exhibition and Convention Center. The
innovation is an excellent and affordable waste disposal tool, say the
Tollway fees waived for Bike for Mom event
BANGKOK, 23 July 2015 (NNT) Tollway fees will be
waived for all vehicles on August 2 and August 16th in honor of Her
Majesty Queen Sirikit’s 83rd birthday Anniversary.
According to Don Muang Tollway Public Company Limited, the toll
exemption will also be applied on the occasion of His Royal Highness
Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn’s Bike for Mom campaign, which is to
take place on August 16th. The exemption will begin from 12 noon -11 pm
on both days
Royal Thai Army and SCG setting up large water tanks amid drought crisis
BANGKOK, 23 July 2015 (NNT) The Royal Thai Army has
released a caravan of trucks to deliver bottled water to people affected
by water shortages in the North and Northeast of Thailand.
The Royal Thai Army and Siam Cement Group (SCG) have joined hands
launching a drought relief campaign to help people suffering from the
ongoing drought crisis. 28 large drinking water tanks will be installed
in 7 provinces in the North and Northeast under the campaign.
Each tank contains up to 2,000 liters of water. They will be set up
within 2 days. In addition, the Directorate of Civil Affairs (DOCA) has
delivered 120,000 bottles of drinking water donated by private
organizations to Nakhon Sawan and Pathum Thani residents.
Reportedly, 200,000 bottles have already been given to the DOCA. Drought
stricken people are encouraged to visit the DOCA to receive drinking
Those living outside Bangkok and wish to donate drinking water can do so
at Army Area Region 2 in Nakhon Ratchasrima and Army Area Region 3 in
Ubonrat Dam's water level increased, farmers start planting rice in Sisaket
KHON KEAN, 23 July 2015, (NNT) Rainfalls have
replenished water in dams in the Northeast, enabling rice farmers to
plant crops after months of drought.
An aerial survey has indicated that the water level at Ubonrat Dam in
Khon Kean, one of the two largest dams in the northeastern region, has
significantly increased following continuous rains since last week. The
dam gains about 3.5 million cubic meters of water daily. The amount of
water is expected to revive more than 2 million rai of farmlands in the
Meanwhile, farmers in Sisaket Province have been seen helping one
another planting rice, as rainfalls have begun to rejuvenate their
farmland previously affected by severe drought conditions.
Thailand-Vietnam bilateral trade to be increased to 20 billion USD
BANGKOK, 23 July 2015 (NNT) The second meeting of the
Joint Trade Committee (JTC) of Thailand and Vietnam has concluded with
both countries agreeing to increase bilateral trade to 20 billion US
dollars within five years' time.
At its meeting in Bangkok, the Thai-Vietnamese JTC resolved to increase
bilateral trade value to 20 billion dollars by the year 2020 and expand
cooperation on agricultural commodities. Vietnam is considering joining
the trilateral effort by Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia in maintaining
rubber price stability. The parties at the JTC meeting also agreed to
collaboratively promote rice exports and the import and export of mango,
longan, lychee and rambutan.
The JTC resolved to create an operational plan for the purpose of
streamlining trade and investment between the two countries, especially
in the aspects of transportation and banking. The Vietnamese private
sector will also be invited to invest in Thailand's special economic
zones in order to take advantage of Thailand's double status as a market
and production base.
Diminished competitiveness, over-reliance on export, infrastructure cited as outstanding problems
BANGKOK, 23 July 2015 (NNT) Diminished
competitiveness, over-reliance on export and the lack of infrastructural
upgrades have been cited as Thailand's outstanding problems by
economists at a seminar hosted by the National Legislative Assembly
Wirathai Santiprapob, advisor to Thailand Development Research Institute
(TDRI), explained at the seminar held on Wednesday that Thailand's
economy has structural problems related to investment,
income-generation, and education, which consequently result in the
country's diminished competitiveness. Low business confidence has
resulted in low levels of investment, whereas public sector investment
has not been increasing as much as desired. To achieve sustained
expansion of the economy, Mr. Wirathai suggested promoting private
sector investment and lifting the income base of people without
resorting to populist policies.
Meanwhile, Ekniti Nitithanpraphat, advisor to the Fiscal Policy Office,
viewed that Thailand's over-reliance on exports meant it has inevitably
been affected by the global economic slowdown. At the same time, the
industrial sector has yet to improve its manufacturing technology.
Thailand also has not seen infrastructure investments in a long time
because of unfavorable politics. These factors meant the economy has not
been able to expand as much as it could have.
Kirida Bhaopichitr, a Senior Economist at the World Bank, explained that
Thailand's economy might be able to expand only 2-3% this year due to
the fallout from the situation of the global economy and the
lower-than-expected expansion of the Chinese economy. However, Thailand
still has supporting factors such as the reduced oil price, the flow of
capital into eastern Asia, regional economic pacts, greater prevalence
of free trade, and the heightened purchasing power attributable to the
growth of the middle class, she added.
Cancer patients to be provided with donated expensive drugs
BANGKOK, 23 July 2015 (NNT) The Department of Medical
Services, in hand with the National Health Security Office (NHSO) and
the Government Pharmaceutical Organization, will be providing cancer
patients with super-expensive drugs which have been donated by drug
manufacturers and distributors.
According to Dr. Suphan Srithamma, director-general of the Department of
Medical Services, the donated drugs include Imatinib – used to treat
leukemia, severe cancer and gastrointestinal stromal tumors – and
Nilotinib, which is used for chronic myeloid leukemia.
The Department of Medical Service will take delivery of the donated
drugs as well as facilitate their importation, monitor their
distribution and report the distribution result to the Customs
Department, the Food and Drug Administration and relevant agencies. The
NHSO will coordinate the replenishment of the drugs at points of service
with the Government Pharmaceutical Organization, to make sure that the
drugs are distributed in accordance with the demands from prescribing
doctors at each point of service.
NLA’s agricultural and cooperative committee follows up on drought crisis in Phichit
BANGKOK, 23 July 2015 (NNT) The National Legislative
Assembly’s committee overseeing agricultural and cooperative affairs has
visited drought-hit Phichit.
Chairman of the NLA’s agricultural and cooperative affairs committee Gen
Danai Meechuwate was accompanied by his team in visiting Phichit to hear
first-hand information related to drought in order for them to come up
with appropriate remedies.
Gen Danai and his team paid a particular attention to the problems
around the Yon River Basin, where they wish to identify solutions to
help farmers who have been affected by the dry spell.
The governor of Phichit and heads of the local government offices have
made a number of requests for help from the committee, including the
dredging of the Yom River and the installation of more floodgates in
local waterways as well as the growing of the forest.
EC ready to implement electronic voting system
BANGKOK, 23 July 2015 (NNT) The Election Commission
of Thailand is now ready to implement an electronic voting system.
Election Commissioner Somchai Srisutthiyakorn said that the EC meeting
on the election system development has already looked at the plan to
adopt the electronic voting system that involves short-, medium- and
long-term plans, in order to allow for the use of this new option for
the upcoming public referendum of the draft Constitution.
According to Mr. Somchai, two prototype machines are now ready to be
used at two polling stations of the Rajthevee district of Bangkok, where
they will serve about 1,600 eligible voters.
Voters will have the opportunity to choose their preferred system while
the EC will be able to test the electronic voting system in order to
gain trust and demonstrate the potential of future polling stations, he
He went on to say that the meeting also discussed the idea of an
election application for smartphones which can be developed to
PM vows to continue crackdown on human trade despite US rating
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) Prime Minister Gen Prayut
Chan-ocha says his government will carry on with its crackdown on human
trafficking, regardless of how the U.S. rates the country's concerted
effort to end the scourge.
Speaking about the U.S. State Department’s annual ranking of global
counter-trafficking efforts set for July 27, Gen Prayut commented his
government will not be despondent if the U.S. maintains a low ranking of
the country’s performance, nor will it be overjoyed if its world ranking
The U.S. last year lowered Thailand to its “tier 3” list of worst
offenders along with 22 countries. The rating prompted the government to
vow to spare no effort in addressing the deep-rooted problems.
High-profile operations included the exposing of a human trafficking
network in the South and the registration and licensing of fishing boats
to solve the problem of Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing
Gen Prayut confirmed, that with or without an improved US human rights
rating, his government will still try its best to eradicate all forms of
human abuse in a systematic manner, however complex the problems are.
PM urges government agencies to cut water usage by 10%
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) The Prime Minister has
urged government agencies to reduce their water usage by 10 percent, and
disclosed the initial water management plan will focus on water
consumption management and flood prevention, the DWR chief says.
The Director-General of the Department of Water Resources (DWR) Jatuporn
Buruspat has announced the outcome of the first National Water Resources
Committee meeting, saying that the committee has received a three phase
2015-2026 water management plan from the Water Policy Committee, with
the initial phase of 2015-2016 focusing on the management of water
consumption and flood prevention in urban communities in the Greater
The Prime Minister is reported to have emphasized these issues, while
four possible solutions have been put forward, namely a study of the
usage of raw water from the western area as a substitute for water from
the Chao Phraya River, suggested by the Royal Irrigation Department and
the Metropolitan Waterworks Authority; the creation of a shortcut water
course from the Chao Phraya River to Sum Lae water pump station where
the salt content of water is examined; a study of the allocation of new
raw water sources for tap water production in Nakhon Nayok; and a study
of the potential use of the dead water stored in Bhumibol and Sirikit
Dams currently running to about 7,500 million cubic meters.
The meeting also presented water usage statistics for the Greater
Bangkok Area where the Metropolitan Waterworks Authority supplies 49
percent of water to houses, and the remaining 51 percent to government
agencies, state enterprises, and the industrial sector, 19 percent of
which is for water usage by government agencies.
On this matter, the Prime Minister has ordered government agencies to
cut their water usage by 10 percent from today and report their water
usage to the administrative sector in an attempt to become a water
conservation model for the general public.
Discussions on the establishment of a sub-committee on issues such as
water for consumption, a new water sources survey, and conservative
water use have also taken place in this meeting
Police gear up to enforce Public Gatherings Act in mid August
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) The Royal Thai Police has
warned that as the Public Gatherings Act is due to be enforced on August
13, activist groups need to strictly adhere to new regulations
stipulated by the act.
According to the Police spokesman, the act requires organizers of a
rally to notify police in the area 24 hours prior to the event. If local
police object to the staging of the rally, organizers are allowed to
appeal to higher-ranking authorities. Protesters who violate the
imposing ban will have the rally broken up by police.
The Public Gatherings Act consists of 35 sections which also include
bans on gatherings within 50 metres from the Government House, the
parliament or the court. The act is designed to minimize the impact of
rallies on the public.
The police added that the act also stipulated that any crowd control
plans must be approved by the cabinet before being implemented on
protesters. Any violation of the rule will result in a jail term of 6
months to 10 years.
China’s top political advisor meets PM Prayut
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) China’s top political
advisor has met with Prime Minister Prayut Chan-ocha during a visit to
Thailand as the guest of the National Legislative Assembly (NLA).
The Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political
Consultative Conference Yu Zhengsheng, was greeted by members of the
National Legislative Assembly and the Royal Thai Air Force’s commander
at Don Mueang International Airport.
Mr. Yu then paid a courtesy call on Prime Minister Gen. Prayut Chan-ocha
at Government House. Gen Prayut expressed his appreciation of the
long-standing ties between the legislative bodies of the two countries
and also thanked China for its understanding of Thailand’s political
The prominent Chinese political advisor meanwhile gave an assurance that
the Uyghurs repatriated to China by the Thai government are being
treated justly under the principles of human rights. The Thai government
had earlier sent 109 Uyghurs back to China at the request of Beijing.
The Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political
Consultative Conference is scheduled to visit Thailand and Indonesia
from July 21 to 28 at the invitation of Thailand’s National Legislative
Assembly and the People’s Consultative Assembly of Indonesia.
2015 TIP report to be released next Monday
WASHINGTON, 22 July 2015 (NNT) The U.S. State
Department spokesman John Kirby has revealed that the U.S. government is
to release the 2015 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report next Monday,
July 27, at 10 a.m. local time or at 9 p.m. Thai time.
The U.S. Secretary of State is expected to announce the report as in
previous years. The TIP report places each country onto one of four
tiers based on the extent of their governments’ efforts to comply with
the “minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking”.
Tier 1 is the highest ranking, followed by Tier 2, Tier 2 with close
monitoring, and Tier 3 in which Thailand has been ranked in the previous
year. Basically, country ranked in Tier 3 will be reassessed within
three months whether or not the U.S. government will impose any pressure
or sanction measures on it. However, the U.S. government decided not to
place any sanction measures on Thailand last year.
Bridge collapses in Phichit amid heavy rains
PHICHIT, 22 July 2015 (NNT) A nearly completed bridge
in Phichit has collapsed overnight amid heavy rain in the lower northern
region. No one was killed or injured during the incident.
The suspension bridge over Nan River was two meters wide and 139 meters
long. Around 9.5 million baht was spent construction up until the bridge
According to initial survey, heavy rain was suspected to have weakened
the base of the bridge to the point where it collapsed into the river.
No one had been using the bridge when it toppled. Locals are calling for
further inspection to determine the cause of the collapse.
The bridge was commissioned by the Department of Public Works and Town &
Country Planning. Construction began on June 23 last year and was being
modified recently by a private contractor. The bridge was due to open
for public use during the upcoming Buddhist Lent.
PM orders ban on alcohol sales near universities
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) Prime Minister General
Prayut Chan-o-cha has signed an official announcement from the Prime
Minister’s Office banning alcohol sales within 300 meters of
universities and vocational colleges.
The new rule is an amendment of Sections 4 and 27 of the 2008 Alcohol
Control Act. Alcohol sales within 300 meters of higher-education
institutions governed by the education law are now officially outlawed.
However, the announcement stated that the new ban will not apply to
hotels and other service operators established legally under royal
The ban will be enforced 30 days after it is published in the Royal
The rule has been widely supported by the anti-alcohol networks and the
public sector, responding to growing concerns over the rising number of
PM chairs National Water Resources Committee meeting
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) The National Water Resources Committee has
agreed to reduce the water consumption of state agencies by 10 percent.
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha presided over the committee meeting,
which focused on tackling drought and flooding next year. The committee
was told that number of wells and reservoirs had been built, in
accordance with last year’s national water management master plan.
Two sub-committees are also being set up to regulate the use of water
and secure water supplies. The new teams are expected to streamline
existing work on water-related issues.
State agencies nationwide have been instructed to cut down water use by
10 percent, effective from Wednesday onwards. The industrial and
agricultural sectors have also been urged to help conserve water during
the drought crisis.
Rayong flu patient negative for MERS-CoV
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) The Ministry of Public
Health has confirmed lab tests that found the flu patient returning from
South Korean negative for MERS-CoV, two weeks after the ministry
declared Thailand free of of the virus.
The latest MERS-CoV suspect is a Thai worker traveling from South Korea.
A few days after his return, the man exhibited symptoms including high
fever, diarrhea, and fatigue and was admitted to hospital. Lab tests
showed he came down with a normal flu.
Meanwhile, his friend in Ubon Ratchathani province who reportedly died
of similar symptoms was rumored to have MERS-CoV. However, lab tests
have ruled out the virus. Public Health Minister Ratchata Ratchatanawin
said authorities were tracking down those spreading the rumor.
Reports of the new suspected cases came two weeks after the Ministry of
Public Health declared Thailand a MERS-free country. The number of
confirmed cases remains at one. Patient zero was an Omani man that fully
recovered and returned to his home country.
ASEAN Public Health Ministers will meet early next week in Vietnam to
discuss ways to handle the fatal virus. Their counterparts from South
Korea and Middle East countries will also be invited to take part in the
Rains prompt flash flood warnings in Loei, replenish dams in Kalasin
LOEI, 22 July 2015, (NNT) Several provinces in the
northeastern region experienced heavy rain, prompting officials to warn
locals of possible flash floods.
The flash flood warning was issued from a village Phu Luang district in
Loei province, asking its 700 villagers to prepare for evacuation when
the local river abruptly changed color, a pre-indication of flash
In Kalasin province, recent rainfall has replenished about 7-8 million
cubic meters of water in Lam Pao Dam. Officials expect drought
conditions to alleviate, provided rainfall continues in the province.
The dam's latest water level was recorded at 453 million cubic meters or
23 percent of total capacity. This amount can be distributed to 97
percent of the province's agricultural areas.
Meanwhile, the Provincial Electricity Authority Office of Pattani
deployed heavy machinery to remove nine fallen electric poles blocking
local roads. The poles were knocked down by recent storms.
DWR expects 196 million cubic meters of more water from new ground water projects
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) The Department of
Water Resources (DWR) is expected to be able to
store up to 196 million of cubic meters of water
when its ground water program is completed.
DWR Director-General Jatuporn Buruspat is going
to report to the National Water Resources
Committee’s meeting today the progress of the
nationwide water saving campaign and the
cabinet’s deliberation on the water management
He added that underground water has already been
located in 425 locations. Once 270 more sites
have been identified, these sources of water
could provide a combined amount of 196 million
cubic meters of water.
The DWR Director-General further stated that
more farmers have been registering with the
Ministry of Interior for jobs as drought crisis
has forced them to abandon their crops. Many of
them have already started their new jobs.
Rainfall to lessen and rebound later this week
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) The Ministry of Science
and Technology has said that Typhoon Halola, which is moving southern
Japan, will not have any impact on Thailand.
According to satellite imagery, skies remain cloudy today in the North
and Northeast of Thailand. Rainfall has been recorded throughout the
country in the last 24 hours, with the North of Thailand experiencing
medium precipitation. In the Northeast, natural water bodies have been
replenished due to heavy rain.
Salinity in the Chao Praya River recorded earlier today has exceeded the
standard level by 0.21 gram per liter. Major dams have only 46 percent
of capacity remaining.
Bhumibol and Sirikit dams have 122 and 268 million cubic meters of
drinking water, respectively. The amount of rain will decline from today
until Friday, as the monsoon trough has left the country and the
southwesterly wind is weakening in both the Gulf of Thailand and the
Minister Korbkan reveals Muang Thai Marathon 2015 events
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015, (NNT) The government and
private sector are organizing the 'Muang Thai Marathon 2015' in each of
the four regions, aiming to boost tourism and promote healthy
Tourism and Sports Minister Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul made the
announcement. She said the marathon is being spearheaded by an alliance
of private corporation helmed by Muang Thai Insurance PCL.
The four marathon events will be held in Bangkok on August 23, Nakhon
Ratchasima on September 20, Phuket on October 18, and Chiang Mai on
Ms. Kobkarn said at each marathon event, Muang Thai Insurance would
provide a free 100,000 baht's worth of accident insurance to all
participants. Net revenue from the events will be donated to a charity
of the provincial organizers' choosing. Those interested can visit
www.muangthaimarathon.com for more information.
DPM opens government helping center under Public Facilitation Act
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Government accepts drinking water and money donations for drought stricken people
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) The Prime Minister’s
Office is encouraging all Thais to donate money
and bottles of water to help those affected by
the drought crisis.
Minister to the Prime Minister’s Office M.L.
Panadda Disakul said the donations will be
delivered to more than 100 centers set up
nationwide at the initiative of His Majesty the
King to provide water for consumption.
Donations have so far been made by 13
organizations, both public and private. The
water distribution centers under the Royal
Patronage have been set up in 53 provinces.
Residents in those provinces have all expressed
their gratitude towards His Majesty the King for
his concern for their plight.
Meanwhile, Transport Minister Prajin Jantong
said road collapses had been reported in many
areas especially roads running along dried-up
canals. 127 spots have already been repaired and
now opened to traffic.
Four more spots which are located along Khlong
13 and 14 canals in Pathum Thani, are still
being fixed. He said road collapses are caused
by the lack of water to maintain the integrity
of the road and heavy trucks.
Additional road construction is expected to take
place to promote long term safety. Roads will be
built further away from the canal. It is
estimated that 750 million baht will be spent on
Government to create jobs for those affected by drought
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) The Thai government
is planning to spend 10 million baht creating
jobs for farmers in each area affected by
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has instructed
the Ministry of Interior to help Thais affected
by water shortages. Ten million baht would be
allocated to each of the drought stricken
provinces in order to help create jobs for
Those in the affected areas are urged to propose
to the government how they plan to spend the10
million to boost their livelihood. General
Prayut also stated that the government has made
significant progress in digging 5,000 artesian
wells, under its 3 year water management plan.
The Ministry of Natural Resources and
Environment has also been instructed to obtain
water pumps for communities in need of water.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives and
the Royal Thai Army will also reach out to
farmers who are struggling to find water to keep
their crops alive.
The Prime Minister is also asking everyone to
understand about the current situation and
urging them to help conserve water.
Tighter police surveillance in place against illegal fishing activities
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) The Royal Thai
Police will be conducting rigorous surveillance
against illegal fishing in 22 provinces before
the new Fisheries Act 2015 comes into force in
A recent meeting of the Royal Thai Police and
provincial police units has been held to
reinforce the prevention of illegal fishing.
According to Deputy Commander Police General Ake
Angsananon, the number of police assigned to do
the task has been increased tenfold.
They have also been working in cooperation with
the Royal Thai Navy in keeping illegal fishing
boats at bay. Police General Ake said he was
confident that this would satisfy the European
The EU has given Thailand until October to solve
its alleged illegal unreported and unregulated
fishing, or face seafood ban.
Nong Khai cricket raisers resume occupation as rain cools down weather
NONG KHAI 22 July 2015 (NNT) Locals in Nong Khai have resumed
their cricket farming occupation, as the rainy season finally
sets in and the weather cools down.
Cricket raisers in Nong Khai had to temporarily halt their
operations after the intense heat during the summer killed off
most of their crickets. Phien Bandit, one of the local cricket
raisers, said the temperature is now about right and this has
made it easier to rear the crickets. He noted that although fans
were used for ventilation of the raising areas during the
summer, the death rate of crickets was still high and many
raisers suffered losses.
Mr. Phien added that extremely cold weather was also not ideal
for cricket raising, as it would result in the crickets feeding
less. In very cold weather, the rearing period for crickets
increases from 45 days to between 80 and 90 days. It also
affects the breeding of cricket
Government launches public services handbook
BANGKOK, 22 July 2015 (NNT) The government has launched its
public services handbook as well as a website and a hotline
number for people to make inquiries about public services and
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on Tuesday presided over the
launch of the handbook, the website www.info.go.th and the 1111
hotline number. The hotline number provides a channel for the
public to inquire about the law and to report problems with
public sector services. The website provides information about
the various public sector services.
The public services handbook provides details of services
offered by the state sector, as well as the associated
procedures, required documents and working time frame for each
service. People will be able to report cases of state officials
not adhering to the public services handbook at the Damrong Tham
Also on Tuesday, the center for facilitating convenience in
approval processes of state agencies was officially opened at
the Office of the Civil Service Commission on Phitsanulok Rd. in
Bangkok. The center has been set up to make sure that people
receive service from the state in a timely manner.