Poor weather may have caused crash of cloud seeding aircraft
Bangkok - Following a plane crash in
Kanchanaburi on September 24 in which two pilots were killed, the Department
of Royal Rainmaking and Agricultural Aviation (DRRAA) has released a
statement saying that sudden changes in weather conditions may have been the
cause of the accident, stressing that the aircraft had been regularly
DRRAA Director General Surasi Kittimonthon made the
announcement on the progress of investigations into the crash in Sai Yok
district of Kanchanaburi province. The flight crew who lost their lives were
instructor Trin Amranand and trainee pilot Suksan Sathientham.
The investigative team, comprised of pilots, aircraft
technicians and aviation medical examiners, found that the aircraft on the
day of the accident was engaged in routine training, involving taking off
and landing practice, as well as in-flight manoeuvres in a normal flight
pattern. The team is in the process of looking for evidence of any technical
failure which may have contributed to the accident by analyzing aircraft
debris, flight paths and pilot operations, which is expected to take 45
days. The investigative team may invite experts from the aircraft’s
manufacturer to join the investigation.
A flight unit controller, who is a member of the
investigative team, said pilots are required to inspect their aircraft and
check weather conditions prior to a flight, adding that there is always a
possibility that weather conditions may suddenly change, with fog and clouds
obstructing visibility causing difficulties in navigating the aircraft. The
accident happened an hour after take-off. However further investigation is
still required to reach any conclusion.
The DRRAA has confirmed the accident wasn’t caused by a
miscalculation of the weather conditions or the number of new pilots in
training, stressing that training protocols follow standard practice, and
that the department’s aircraft receive maintenance after every 100 hours of
The department’s officials will continue to fulfill
their rainmaking duties to help the general public despite this accident.
Thais celebrate vegetarian festival nationwide
Bangkok - The annual vegetarian festival is
being celebrated in many provinces across Thailand.
Highlights of the opening ceremony on Phuket were
dragon and lion dances, a cultural performance by the Confucius Institute
and a show entitled “Beautiful China” presented by students from Kathu
Witthaya School. There were also booths selling vegetarian food.
At the Hock Sieng Tung Vegetarian House in Khon Kaen
province, many Thai-Chinese descendants dressed in white participated in a
religious ceremony to welcome the Nine Emperor Gods. The Hock Sieng Tung
Vegetarian House has prepared ingredients for making vegetarian food from
September 28 to October 8 this year. Signs were put up in front of the
building to invite people to join the celebration.
In Phichit province, the Phichit Harmony Merit Welfare
Foundation, and people who practice Chinese-style vegetarianism, wore white
outfits and took part in a religious activity to celebrate the occasion.
Free vegan food and desserts are being offered for 10 days. Many people made
merit and enjoyed a variety of vegan meals on the opening day. People can
bring food containers to take extra food home, but they are not allowed to
use plastic bags.
The Department of Internal Trade, under the Ministry of
Commerce, has organised a campaign to encourage people to consume more fruit
and vegetables, with cooperation from Thai Agro Exchange Company Limited and
retailers who purchase their goods directly from farmers. The campaign aims
to improve supply chain management for fruit and vegetables.
Ancient human skeletons discovered in Chiang Mai
Chiang Mai - As many as 23 ancient human
skeletons and the skeleton of a horse have been discovered by officials from
the Fine Arts Office in Chiang Mai. The remains are thought to be at least a
thousand years old.
The skeletons were found behind a Chedi at Tha Kan
Temple, San Pa Tong district of Chiang Mai province. The ancient Wiang Tha
Kan city was a fortress of the Hariphunchai kingdom dating back more than
1,400 years. The human remains were found two meters below the surface and
all skeletons lay pointing to the West and Northwest. They were laid on
their backs with knees bent.
Nongchanai Tharaksa, operational archaeologist from
Fine Arts Office 7, Chiang Mai, who was a member of the excavation team,
said the skeletons will undergo DNA testing in order to determine their age
range. The area they were found could have been a cemetery but officials
can’t tell if they died as a result of old age, war or an outbreak of
Nong Nooch Garden improves landscape of Cambodian Embassy
Bangkok - Nong Nooch Tropical Garden has
improved the landscape of the Royal Embassy of Cambodia under the theme of a
“Friendship Garden” to strengthen bilateral relations between the two
The Director of Nong Nooch Tropical Garden, Kampon
Tansacha, brought in a group of 100 gardeners and 1,000 trees and flowers to
improve the landscape of the embassy grounds which cover more than 100
square meters of land on Ramkhamhaeng Road in Wang Thong Lang district of
Some of the beautiful trees and flowers include
seal-wax palm, pigeon wood and Chinese bangan, as they are suitable for
growing in tropical climates. The landscaping services were provided free of
The Cambodian Ambassador to Thailand presented a
certificate of honor to the Director of Nong Nooch Tropical Garden for
beautifying the embassy’s landscape. The ambassador also expressed his
gratitude to the Thai government for allowing more than one million
Cambodian people to work in Thailand.
Air quality improving in southern Thailand
Yala – Air quality in the southern regions
of Thailand has risen into the range of ‘moderate’ to ’very good’ over
the last two days, with Yala province seeing a continual drop in levels
of particulate matter of 2.5 (PM 2.5).
The haze previously shrouding Yala has lifted
following rain and a shift in wind direction. Latest checks of the air
quality found the PM 2.5 saturation level at 42 micrograms per cubic
meter, considered mild. The level is a significant drop from a
previously reported 85 micrograms per cubic meter.
Due to erratic weather and more smog approaching
the province, citizens have been urged to remain cautious and to follow
the Ministry of Public Health’s guidelines. While members of the public
may return to outdoor activities, the elderly, infirm and pregnant women
along with those with respiratory or heart conditions are advised to
PM underlines Thailand’s healthcare success
Prime Minister Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha.
New York – Prime Minister Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha
attended the opening ceremony of the High-Level Meeting on Universal Health
Care this week, one of the conferences of the 74th United Nations (UN)
Summit currently taking place in New York. At the proceedings, Gen. Prayut
outlined Thailand’s public health successes, including the provision of
universal health insurance.
The prime minister said that from October 1 onwards,
the country will provide HIV vaccinations to all risk groups in a
continuation of the work of Her Royal Highness Princess Soamsawali Krom Muen
Suddhanarinatha, in turn it represents an extension of the UN’s work against
AIDS in the Asia Pacific region.
The Thai premier also highlighted the government’s
provision of funding to health coverage. The administration is currently
working to more efficiently utilize the 15 percent of the National Health
Insurance Fund set aside for the promotion of health and establishing local
health funds. It is looking to create a model for public health on a global
scale but will first extend better care to sensitive and fringe groups,
incorporating the use of innovations and technology.
Gen. Prayut also spoke at the High-Level Meeting on
Climate, saying the ASEAN region has been just as affected by climate change
as other areas. He pointed out that the bloc has targeted a 30% reduction in
power usage and to have 23% of its power come from renewable sources. The
region is to base its fiscal policies on energy usage and carbon emissions
and in the long term will build cooperation toward environmental goals.
He asserted that climate change cannot be fought by any
one country alone and proclaimed that ASEAN is ready to be a partner with
the global community in the establishment of sustainability.
Mitsubishi Motors to expand investment in Thailand
Tokyo - The government’s investment roadshow in
Japan this week went well on the first day, with Mitsubishi Motors
Corporation affirming its intention to expand its investment in Thailand.
Thai Industry Minister, Suriya Juangroongruangkit, had
a discussion with the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Mitsubishi Motors,
Osamu Masuko, on investment opportunities in Thailand. Suriya said the CEO
had confirmed that Mitsubishi Motors will expand its investment in Thailand
due to the country’s low operating costs and its status as the regional
Mitsubishi Motors plans to invest in electric vehicle (EV)
production in Thailand and aims to make the country the EV production center
of the region. With an investment budget of 20 billion baht, seven billion
baht will be invested in improving manufacturing plants and production
lines. The remaining 13 billion baht will be invested in producing plug-in
hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) and
battery electric vehicles (BEVs). The 3.13-billion-baht PHEV project has
been endorsed by the Board of Investment (BOI), and production will start in
2021. The HEV and BEV projects will commence in 2024.
The Industry Minister and his officials also visited
Mitsubishi Motors’ technology exhibition, featuring future EVs. The
exhibition officially opened in July this year. Innovative vehicles designed
by the company are on display at the exhibition.
Border trade slows down due to global economic woes
Chotinisakorn, Director-General of the Department of Foreign Trade.
Bangkok - Trade growth in Thailand’s border
areas has slowed down due to the struggling global economy and the ongoing
trade war between China and the United States of America. In the first eight
months of this year, Thailand’s border trade was valued at 915 billion baht,
up by only 0.07%.
The Director-General of the Department of Foreign
Trade, Adul Chotinisakorn, said Thailand’s border trade with four
neighboring countries accounted for 720 billion baht, down by 1.16%.
Malaysia, one of Thailand’s top trading partners, saw its trade value drop
by 4.78%. Thailand’s exports of para rubber, rubber products and combustion
engines to Malaysia continued to contract. The bilateral trade value between
Thailand and Laos also contracted. However, Thailand’s trade figures with
Myanmar and Cambodia still experienced growth.
Thailand’s cross-border trade with the three countries
tallied 180 billion baht, up by 5.24%.
The bilateral trade with southern China was valued at
88 billion baht, up by 37.83%. However, Thailand’s trade with Vietnam and
Singapore experienced a slowdown.
Key factors contributing to the Thai economy included
the global economic slowdown and the baht’s appreciation. Weakening
currencies of neighboring countries had also dampened Thailand’s
competitiveness. As a result, the government’s projected border and transit
trade of 1.6 trillion baht this year might not be achieved, but the amount
should not be lower than 1.4 trillion baht, thanks to the government’s
efforts to reduce obstacles to border trade.
Male model arrested in widely publicized sex case
Sept. 18, 2019, photo, Ratchadech Wongtabut talks to reporters at the
Bukkhalo Police Station in Bangkok. (AP Photo)
Bangkok (AP) — Police on Wednesday arrested a
male model accused of taking an unconscious woman home, boasting online
about his sexual exploits, and leaving her lifeless body in the lobby of his
Police brought charges of illegal detention leading to
death, abduction with intent of committing an indecent act and molestation
against 24-year-old Ratchadech Wongtabut in a case that has riveted the
attention of the public and press.
The victim, Thitima Noraphanpiphat, 25, made a living
as a "pretty," the term for young women normally hired for events such as
auto shows to pose seductively with products they are promoting.
Thitima, who used Lunlabelle as her professional name,
was hired to attend a party from which Ratchadech left with her on the night
of Sept. 16.
A media frenzy over the case has been fueled by the
suspect's provocative online posts boasting of past sexual conquests, plus
surveillance video showing him carrying the apparently unconscious victim.
Thitima's family and boyfriend went to the media to
press their case that her death involved wrongdoing and that the perpetrator
be held to account. They acted as Ratchadech's involvement was made public,
and he initially had been questioned by police and released without charge
after denying any criminal actions.
Metropolitan Police Commissioner Lt. Gen. Sutthipong
Wongpin said at a news conference on Wednesday that Ratchadech acknowledged
bringing Thitima to his apartment but said he had no intention to do her
harm and did not realize that she was dead while she was with him.
Police announced Tuesday that Thitima may have already
been dead by the time Ratchadech brought her back to his apartment.
The police said Wednesday that an autopsy found that
Thitima had died from extreme alcohol intoxication, citing a blood alcohol
concentration of 418 milligrams per 100 milliliters.
There had been speculation that Thitima was given a
date rape drug such as GHB. But the drug rapidly disappears from the blood
stream, making its presence difficult to confirm. Thai media cited police as
saying none had been found in Ratchadech's apartment.
Police are investigating others who may be involved in
the affair, especially the owner and guests at the house where Thitima
attended the party before she died.
Her death has raised interest in the dark side of the
life of a pretty, when they can get into situations they cannot control.
Jaded Chouwilai, director of the Women and Men
Progressive Movement Foundation, said the case reflects the high risks of
abuse, both sexual and nonsexual, toward women in that specialized service
The foundation has studied the cases of young women
working as sales promoters at beer drinking outlets nationwide, including
It found that all suffered some manner of abuse: being
forced to drink large amounts of alcoholic beverages, molestation, and other
physical and verbal attacks.
"In the case of Lunlabelle, it happened in a private
place and she was there all by herself and heavily drunk. Therefore, her
risk of being attacked was much higher," Jaded said.
Jaded said that stereotyping and discrimination against
this group of workers meant they drew little sympathy from the government
and society at large.
"They need protection from being abused, just like
other workers," he said.
Chim Shop Chai registration campaign goes viral
Bangkok - The third day of registration for
allowances in the Chim Shop Chai campaign on Wednesday saw the 1 million
daily quota filled by 6am in the morning.
10 million persons will be able to register themselves
to receive a 1,000 baht allowance each in the government’s electronic money
mobile application. The allowance can be used for eligible purchases from
Thursday 26th September following an application update. The registration
quota is limited to a million persons daily. Once registered, an SMS is sent
to applicants who are required to confirm their identity within three days.
An eligible person in this campaign must be a Thai
citizen holding a valid ID card, be 18 years old or more, and have an
eligible smartphone able to install the app. The registration period will
end on 15th November 2019, or when the 10 million total quota is reached.
Flow accelerators aid draining water in Ubon Ratchathani
Ubon Ratchathani - The Royal Irrigation
Department has installed more high pressure water flow accelerators at Kaeng
Saphue to increase drainage capacity, leading to a continuous reduction in
flood waters in many areas.
The Chi-Mun Rivers Flood Management Center in Ubon
Ratchathani has reported water level readings at M.179A (Se Bai) which show
402 cubic meters of water passing through each second, with the water level
2.33 meters higher than the banks, but with a continuous reduction. The
flooded area has been reduced to some 326.4 square kilometers and some
disaster victims can now return to their homes, while all those evacuated
earlier are expected to be able to return by the end of this month.
Royal Irrigation Department Director General Thongplew
Kongjun said the department is installing 15 Hydro Flow pumps at Kaeng
Saphue in Phibun Mangsahan district to help push the water into the Mekong
River. Two pumps are now operational while another 13 will be installed as
soon as possible.
Some obstacles have been found along with the
implementation of these pumps, one being that some of the water discharged
was flowing into rocks, reversing its direction. A pipe extension is being
installed to push the water out further downstream in order to improve the
Equipment for persons with disabilities put on display
Bangkok - The Department of Empowerment of
Persons with Disabilities is exhibiting a lightweight cardboard chair which
can be made at home for just 400 baht as an innovation for young persons
The cardboard chair was initiated by Baan Fueng Fa Home
for Protection and Development of Persons with Disabilities in Nonthaburi,
to assist children with multiple disabilities or bed-ridden children who
can’t move by themselves. The chair can be designed to suit the physical
conditions of an individual child needing to sit up comfortably.
Construction advice to those who may be interested in making the cardboard
chair will be available soon.
Anira Thinon, a deputy director general of the
Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, said the cardboard
chair won an award for outstanding innovation in government service from the
Office of the Public Sector Development Commission. The department will
gladly transfer the instructions on how to make the cardboard chair to those
who may be interested or parents of children with disabilities, to save on
the purchase cost of one, and promote the re-use of cardboard boxes.
The manufacturing cost for the cardboard chair is only
a few hundred baht per unit. The chair weighs only a few kilograms, has a
belt attached to it and can help with the physical development of the child.
Thailand becomes first ASEAN nation to grow industrial-scale medical cannabis
Anutin Charnvirakul, Minister of Public Health,
talks to the media at Maejo University in Chiang Mai.
Chiang Mai - Thailand’s largest batch of 12,000
cannabis sprouts has been planted at Maejo University in Chiang Mai. It is
the first-ever industrial-scale medical cannabis manufacturing facility in
the ASEAN region. The produce is expected to be harvested in early 2020 for
use in treatment and research.
Anutin Charnvirakul, Minister of Public Health, said a
total of 12,000 cannabis sprouts had been planted in the program. It is
expected that 2.4 tons of dried cannabis will be delivered to the
Pharmaceutical Government Organization (GPO) and its network partners by
February 2020, in order to produce cannabis-based drugs to be available
through licensed medical institutions including public and private hospitals
as well as clinics.
The minister expressed his confidence that the
cooperation will yield hemp oil of medical grade that meets the quality
standard. The Department of Medical Services (DMS) will use it in treating
patients along with research.
The National Cancer Institute (NCI) has used the first
batch of hemp oil for research in test tubes, in order to study the effects
of inhibiting the proliferation of cancer cells. The NCI is currently
waiting for the experimental results.
Thai universities in World University Rankings 2020
Bangkok –Thai universities have been included in
World University Rankings 2020 by The Times Higher Education.
According to the Times website, the rankings are based
on 13 criteria which measure teaching, research, knowledge transfer and the
international outlook of each educational institution.
Among all Thai universities, Mae Fah Luang University
leads in the rankings. It received its highest scores in citations and
international outlook while Mahidol University received its highest scores
in industry, income and international outlook. Both were ranked in the ‘six
to eight-hundred’ category out of 1,400 universities across 92 countries.
In ASEAN, Singapore provided two universities of the
highest rank: the National University of Singapore, in 25th place and
Nanyang Technological University, 48th.
As for no.1, the University of Oxford in the UK leads
the rankings, as it has for 4 consecutive years, followed by the California
Institute of Technology and the University of Cambridge.
Companies back circular economy at eco innovation forum
Bangkok - The Ministry of Industry, the
Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand, the Water and Environment Institute
for Sustainability, and the Federation of Thai Industries have held the Eco
Innovation Forum 2019 on the theme ‘The Economy: Way to a Smart and
Sustainable Eco Industrial Town’.
Exhibitions on eco industrial town development were
held in the forum by government agencies, entrepreneurs, and educational
institutions. Some 200 Eco Factory awards were given to winning industrial
estates and factories.
An Advisor to the Minister of Industry, Theerayut
Wanitchang said the Ministry of Industry has clear goals to encourage OTOP
entrepreneurs and SMEs to adopt the Bio Economy, Circular Economy, and Green
Economy or BCG Model in their operations.
The Ministry of Industry and the Federation of Thai
Industries have signed an agreement on the Factory 4.0 industry development
model through the BLISS Project, aimed at maximizing added value from
limited resources, by designing products that encourage recycling, promote
innovations and help efficiently reduce resource and energy consumption in
an environmentally friendly manner.
The eco industrial city project was piloted in Ban
Chang, Rayong, to support future industrial development in the Eastern
Economic Corridor, and to promote proper electronic waste processing.
The Ministry of Industry is expected to turn all
industrial estates in Thailand into eco industrial cities fully engaged in
the Circular Economy by 2021.
EEF and UNESCO Bangkok vow to push for equitable education
Bangkok – The Equitable Education Fund (EEF) of
Thailand and UNESCO Bangkok have signed a memorandum of understanding on
equitable education for out-of-school children. The MoU signing ceremony
took place in Bangkok on Monday.
EEF, supervised by the prime minister of Thailand and
run by a board comprising independent experts and representatives of
relevant state agencies, will work with UNESCO on academic projects,
strengthening networks throughout the Asia-Pacific to tackle education
In Thailand, area-based education reform has been
implemented in 20 provinces across the country. Conditional cash transfers
and vocational scholarships are available for students in need, while
mechanisms have been set up to return out-of-school children to education,
or to provide them with appropriate training.
According to UNESCO Institute for Statistics data, the
number of out-of-school children around the world has continuously declined,
from more than 100 million in 1990 to 63 million in 2017. However, progress
has been slow in the past decade.
EEF Managing Director Supakorn Buasai said that
government mechanisms alone could not eliminate education inequality, and
cooperation by all parties is needed to find sustainable solutions to the
Meanwhile, UNESCO Bangkok Director Shigeru Aoyagi says
that UNESCO highly appreciates Thailand’s continuous commitment to equitable
education and wishes many other countries in Asia and other regions of the
world would follow the same path.
Vichai’s estate sued over fatal helicopter crash
Nusara Suknamai, an employee of billionaire
Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha and a runner-up in Miss Thailand Universe 2005,
died in the fatal helicopter crash on Oct. 27, 2018. (Photo/Instagram)
Bangkok (AP) — The family of an employee of the
Thai owner of England's Leicester City soccer team who died in a helicopter
crash that also took her boss's life sued his estate and his family's
duty-free business on Monday for 300 million baht.
Former beauty queen Nusara Suknamai, 33, was one of
five people killed when team owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha's helicopter
crashed and burst into flames shortly after takeoff from the soccer field
following an Oct. 27, 2018, Premier League match.
Vichai was one of Thailand's wealthiest businessmen,
who prospered through his family's ownership of the King Power duty-free
chain, which holds monopolies at most of the country's international
airports. Before his death at age 63, Forbes magazine estimated his business
empire to be worth US$4.88 billion, making him the fifth-richest person in
Thailand at the time.
He oversaw one of the greatest underdog successes in
sports when his 5,000-1 outsider won the English Premier League title in
Nusara was a runner-up in the 2005 Thailand's Miss
Universe competition before entering Vichai's employ.
Pinit Laksanavisit, a lawyer for Nusara's family, said
the suit was filed in Bangkok Civil Court because Thai law holds the
aircraft's owner responsible for any harm to passengers.
"Mr. Vichai was the owner of that helicopter and also
there was the name of King Power on it," he told The Associated Press.
Aviation accident investigators determined that the
crash occurred when the pilot lost control of the aircraft because of a
Britain's Air Accidents Investigation Branch said last
December that the mechanism linking the pilot's pedals with the tail rotor
blades became disconnected, resulting in the helicopter making an
uncontrollable right turn before it spun and crashed.
Pinit said Nussara's family had been in talks for more
than 10 months with representatives of the Sriwatanaprapa family and King
"It seems they are trying to get away from their
responsibility," Pinit said.
Representatives for King Power declined to comment on
Pinit said an initial court hearing is scheduled for
Nov. 26, but his clients remain open to negotiating a settlement.
Ministers meet and assist flood victims
Ubon Ratchathani (NNT) - Various ministers on Monday visited Ubon
Ratchathani and nearby provinces to meet with disaster victims and assess
the current flood situation.
The Minister of Agriculture and Cooperatives
Chalermchai Sreeon conducted aerial observation of waterways and drainage
over installation sites of 271 flow accelerators, along with the Royal
Irrigation Department director general and the governor of Ubon Ratchathani.
The drainage is reported to be performing well, while the current capacity,
when combined with another 100 flow accelerators in Phibun Mangsahan
district, can help raise drainage capacity into the Mekong River by
additional 30 percent.
Deputy Ministers of Agriculture and Cooperatives, Capt
Thamanat Prompow and Mananya Thaiset, led teams of officials to meet flood
victims, delivering survival bags and consumable items to villagers in Ban
Kud Rangom, Ban Pak Kuk Wai, Ban Kuk Chum, Ban Khu Sawang and Ban Kwa Mai
Kan villagers in Warin Chamrap district, reassuring them that government is
concerned about disaster victims and is willing to help.
The Minister of Energy, Sontirat Sontijirawong, has
visited a disaster shelter in Warin Chamrap district, Ubon Ratchathani, and
boarded a flat-bottomed boat to deliver survival bags to monks and villagers
in the Don Ngiew community where the flood level remains high, and villagers
have to stay on the upper floor of their houses.
Flood levels in many areas of Ubon Ratchathani have
started to recede, allowing some villagers to return and clean up their
houses. Disaster victim assistance operations in lower northeastern
provinces have been raised to level three, which focuses on integrated work
between affected provinces.
In Roi Et, a Deputy Minister of Agriculture and
Cooperatives, Prapat Potasuthon, met with villagers and distributed survival
bags and animal feed to affected farmers and villagers at Selaphum
Pittayakom School in Selaphum district, and Thung Khao Luang District
Office. After the flood, the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives will
encourage farmers to grow mung beans, which only require 100 days from
planting to harvesting. The government will be providing free seedlings and
a guaranteed selling price for this short-term measure. Farmers will then be
supported for beef cattle farming through special loans via the Bank for
Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives, which will help farmers earn a
Prime minister meets with Thai group in United States
Prime Minister Gen Prayut meets Thai nationals
in New York.
New York - Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha,
his wife Naraporn and officials have attended the 74th United Nations
General Assembly in New York where the PM was welcomed by Thai nationals. He
met with the Thai group at a hotel where he is staying during which he
explained Thailand’s internal situation and government policies. He said he
was scheduled to attend leader-level meetings on universal health care
coverage, climate change and sustainable development goals.
The Thai premier is also scheduled to deliver a
statement as chair of ASEAN and to meet with executive officials of the Asia
Society and the United States Business Council to raise the confidence of
prospective investors, looking to invest in Thailand.
The prime minister talked about flooding in the
northeastern region and confirmed that the government will grant
compensation payments for damage and carry out post-flooding restoration
plans, adding that official inspections need to be done strictly because the
compensation will be using taxpayers’ money. A total of 32 provinces have
been affected by flooding for which 20-30 billion baht in budget will be
used in remediation, while flood victims nationwide will be treated equally.
However, some Thai students in the United States asked
the prime minister how he is taking care of his own health. He responded
that he works hard and sometimes felt stressed but could always eat well.
When he returned home, he liked to watch films about investigations, like
his wife does. Sometimes he reads books which help him relax. He said if he
had time on Saturdays and Sundays, he would take the opportunity to
Upper part of Thailand warned of cooler weather
Bangkok - The upper part of Thailand has been
warned of volatile weather and temperatures dropping 3-5 degrees Celsius
from now until September 26.
A strong high pressure system from China is prevailing
over the northern, northeastern and upper central regions, causing a monsoon
trough to pass over the lower part of the country and bringing heavy rain to
In Bueng Kan province near the Mekong River, the high
pressure system has brought fog and cool breezes and a temperature of 22
degrees Celsius on Monday. Many residents along the banks of the Mekong
River were seen wrapping up in thicker clothing or out exercising to keep
Disaster management raised to level 3
Interior Minister Gen Anuphong Phaochinda.
Bangkok - The National Disaster Prevention and
Mitigation Command, with Interior Minister Gen Anuphong Phaochinda as the
commander, has announced an upgrade of disaster management from level 2 to
level 3 after assessing the influence of a monsoon trough in upper Thailand,
and heavy rain in the Northeast.
According to information from the Office of the
National Water Resources and the Royal Irrigation Department, the water
levels of the Chi and Mun rivers have subsided but water is still
overflowing the river banks and there are floods in many areas.
The Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM)
has been instructed to follow, analyze and assess the situation and report
on it to the Commander of National Disaster Prevention and Mitigation
Command to consider issuing policies. The DDPM has also been assigned to
establish a disaster command center in Ubon Ratchathani, to supervise and
control four provinces, namely Ubon Ratchathani, Yasothon, Si Sa Ket and Roi
Et and coordinate assistance for people in flood-affected areas. When the
flood situation has improved, a damage survey will be expedited for rapid
rehabilitation of the region.
Spotted hyena fossil found in Thailand
Bangkok - After discovering the fossilized
remains of four species of large mammal, especially a dotted hyena at Yai
Ruak Cave in Krabi, the Department of Mineral Resources will develop the
location as a source of knowledge and a tourist attraction.
The four species discovered are a Malayan porcupine,
sambar deer, Javan rhinoceros and spotted hyena. Sommai Techawal,
Director-General of the Department of Mineral Resources, says the animals
were initially estimated to have lived 80,000 to 200,000 years ago, in a
period that is known as the early part of the late Pleistocene. It is
considered important evidence of the farthest dispersion of hyenas found in
Kantaphon Suraprasit, a lecturer at the Department of
Geology, Faculty of Science, Chulalongkorn University, said a research team
had studied the dental enamel of the fossils. The analysis has confirmed
that in the Pleistocene period, Krabi was dominated by savannah vegetation
alternating with dense forest patches. This was a suitable path for the
migration of mammals. There is also an assumption that the dispersion of
hyenas into the region of what is now Krabi, was due to discontinuity of the
Savannah route that was separated by rainforests in Sundaland throughout the
Thai-Malaysian peninsula during the ice age in the Pleistocene period.
MOAC to lead volunteer team to rehabilitate flooded areas
Bangkok - The Ministry of Agriculture and
Cooperatives (MOAC) will lead a team of volunteers to rehabilitate the
extensive flooded areas of Ubon Ratchathani this week. It has also prepared
an urgent plan to help flood-affected farmers by providing them with seeds
and production aids, organizing a team to repair agricultural tools and
listening to their problems immediately after the flood water has subsided.
Chalermchai Sri-orn, Minister of Agriculture and
Cooperatives, disclosed that there are still flooded regions in many parts
of Ubon Ratchathani city and its surroundings. The MOAC has instructed all
agencies to accelerate rehabilitation of flood-affected areas after the
flood water has subsided to help people and farmers.
The eight main activities include surveying the damaged
area, dispatching mobile units to rehabilitate fish farms, crops and the
water supply in each province, accelerating floodwater drainage in the
community and agricultural areas by the Royal Irrigation Department,
improving soil by the Department of Land Development, distributing seeds by
the Department of Agricultural Extension, releasing fish into natural water
sources by the Department of Fisheries, repairing agricultural machinery and
organizing volunteer teams to help farmers at their request.
The MOAC is to lead its officials on a visit to Ubon
Ratchathani on Monday, September 23, to help rehabilitation in flood
affected areas so that people are able to return to their normal lives as
soon as possible.
Thai entrepreneurs join 16th China-ASEAN Expo
Commerce Minister Jurin Laksanawisit.
Nanning - Commerce Minister Jurin Laksanawisit
has led a group of government officials and entrepreneurs to Nanning, the
capital of the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, to attend the 16th
China-ASEAN Expo (CAEXPO).
Over the weekend, Thai officials and entrepreneurs met
with Chinese Vice-Premier Han Zheng, who oversees China’s economy, to
strengthen economic ties and promote bilateral trade and investment.
Thailand is promoting the export of rice, para rubber,
cassava, fruit and poultry, as China has been importing more Thai products
every year. As a result, ASEAN and China have agreed to set China’s tariffs
at zero for more than 90% of ASEAN’s exports.
The Ministry of Commerce has continually organized
events to boost trade and investment between Thailand, China and the member
states of ASEAN. Last year, exports of Thai fruit reported growth of US$1
billion. Over the past seven months, the export value of fruit shipped to
China was US$1.1 billion. The total value of trade between the two countries
is US$44.9 billion.
BMA cleans Chao Phraya riverside ahead of royal barge procession
Bangkok - The royal barge procession will take
place on 24 October this year. In addition to the preparation of the royal
barges, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration has been busy working to
improve the landscape along both sides of the Chao Phraya River to
The Governor of Bangkok, Pol Gen Aswin Kwanmuang, led
3,105 officials and volunteers from the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration
(BMA), royal volunteers, and volunteers in the Altruistic Heart campaign to
clean up the riverside landscape and facilities on the Thomburi side of the
river this week/
The volunteers helped clean up public squares, roads,
the embankment under the Rama VIII bridge, remove debris and water hyacinths
from the Chao Phraya River, and renovate Suan Luang Phraram 8 Park to honor
His Majesty the King.
Thailand, China affirm strong ties
Bangkok - Thailand and China have affirmed their
strong relationship following a meeting between the Prime Minister Gen.
Prayut Chan-o-cha, and the Chinese Communist Party’s Minister of the
International Department, Song Tao.
Gen. Prayut welcomed the Chinese minister along with
his delegation to Government House in Bangkok this week. The Prime Minister
took the opportunity to thank China for devoting importance to relations
with Thailand and congratulated the diplomat on the 70th anniversary of the
founding of the People’s Republic of China. The Prime Minister also
acknowledged that Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn will be
bestowing the Order of Rajamitrabhorn upon the President of China, Xi
Jinping, to mark the long standing ties between the two countries.
The two confirmed continued cooperation in the
political, economic and tourism realms and readiness to continue exchanges
in the areas of education, technology and science.
The Chinese delegation commended Thailand on its
chairing of ASEAN this year, and stated its support for the kingdom at every
The Thai leader asked that China give its support to
the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) negotiations, aimed
at being finalized this year.
Government sets up war room to administer flood relief
Bangkok - The government is to set up a war room
for assistance to flood victims. The service is to be provided in a
systematic and consistent manner able to keep the people continually
informed with information from all relevant agencies.
Thiraphat Prayoonsit, the permanent secretary-designate
of the Prime Minister’s Office, chaired a meeting to initiate the setting up
of the war room which is scheduled to officially open on September 23.
The war room will monitor the delivery of all financial
donations and follow up on the repair of houses and restoration of farmland
damaged by recent floods. Money donated by the private sector and
individuals has so far totaled over one billion baht.
Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam said the money
donated for victims of natural disasters has strict protocols to follow and
cannot be handed out without prior examination. He admitted the government’s
assistance measures are slow due to such mechanisms but officials are
working to improve the situation and ensure that relief is administered in a
timely and efficient manner.
Patients can receive prescribed medicine at 500 drugstores from October 1
Bangkok - The Ministry of Public Health (MOPH)
will allow certified modern pharmacies to provide prescribed medicine to
patients who live nearby, to reduce congestion at hospitals.
Dr. Praphon Tangsrikiatkun, MOPH Deputy Permanent
Secretary, opened a meeting to explain the guidelines for reducing
congestion at hospitals using the services of modern pharmacies. Patients
can bring prescriptions from doctors at 50 central hospitals and general
hospitals nationwide to pick up medicine at a modern pharmacy that meets the
GPP standard of the Food and Drug Administration. Currently, 500 eligible
pharmacies are participating in the project.
The four groups of patients who may receive prescribed
medicine free of charge at drugstores instead of hospitals are those with
diabetes, high blood pressure, asthma or mental illnesses. The medicine
collected at drugstores is the same as that they would receive from the
hospital. Patients can choose whether or not to receive the prescribed
medicine from a certified pharmacy.
The MOPH aims to establish a network of 5,000 modern
pharmacies by 2023. Currently, there are 17,000 registered modern pharmacies
under the GPP standards guide and 250 hospitals nationwide in the project.
Worst haze crisis in Songkhla for 3 years
students wear protective masks at Boonlert Anusorn school in Songkhla
province, southern Thailand, Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019. (AP Photo/Sumeth
Songkhla - Forest fire haze from Indonesia is
currently blanketing the southern provinces of Thailand, leading officials
to issue health alerts for those venturing outside.
In Songkhla on Wednesday, the PM 2.5 (particulate
matter) value measured at 230 micrograms per cubic meter, which is beyond
what is considered a safe limit by health professionals. People in the area
are being advised to refrain from outdoor activities and wear the N95 masks
when they are outdoors.
The current haze situation is considered the worst for
the past three years. Members of the public who experience health symptoms
such as coughing, shortness of breath, conjunctivitis, chest pain, headache,
irregular heartbeat, nausea or fatigue should consult a doctor immediately.
Yala Governor Anuchit Trakoolmuthuta has sent urgent
letters to district chief officers, instructing them to take appropriate
action and issue air quality warnings to safeguard citizens’ wellbeing at
Government invites public to observe Royal Barge Procession
Bangkok - The government is making preparations
for members of the public to witness the Royal Barge Procession on October
24, 2019. The procession is part of nationwide celebrations of His Majesty
King Maha Vajiralongkorn Phra Vajiraklaochaoyuhua’s coronation earlier this
A meeting of the committee in charge of security and
traffic management took place this week and instructed related units to
ensure public safety and provide adequate parking spaces and buses to serve
People living outside Bangkok can travel via public
vans or park their vehicles at many locations in the city, including Muang
Thong Thani, Chaeng Watthana Government Complex, Thupatemi Stadium, Ikea
department stores, the Bangkok International Trade and Exhibition Center (BITEC)
in Bang Na district, Central department stores and Bang Rak Noi Tha It MRT
Station. More than 30,000 parking spaces will be available. The Bangkok Mass
Transit Authority (BMTA) will also provide free transport services on this
The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) has set
up royally-bestowed mobile kitchens and is cooperating with medical
personnel from the Ministry of Public Health to provide medical check-ups
for the general public along the procession route. The BMA has also
cooperated with the Ministry of Social Development and Human Security to
provide wheelchairs and volunteers to assist the elderly. The administration
has set up 16 screening locations along the procession route.
Chicken exports to China increase 700% amid swine fever outbreak
Bangkok - Soaring pork prices due to the swine
fever outbreak in China have led to a 700% increase in Thailand’s chicken
exports between January and July this year
Kukrit Arepagorn, Manager of the Thai Broiler
Processing Exporters Association, revealed that, due to the highly increased
price of pork, Chinese consumers have increased their demand for chicken and
the nation has imported over thirty-three thousand tonnes of chicken meat
and products from Thailand since the start of the year. This figure has made
China the third largest export market for chicken meat and products from
Thailand, after Europe and Japan.
Recently, officials from General Administration of
Customs of China came to Thailand for a safety inspection of 10 poultry
factories. The results are expected to be announced soon.
Currently, there are 7 chicken factories in Thailand
which are certified by the Government of China and which can export frozen
chicken meat and products to the country.
PM confers outstanding industry awards
Bangkok - Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha
presided over a ceremony for the presentation of The Prime Minister’s
Industry Award 2019, organized by the Ministry of Industry for the 27th year
and attended by executive officials of the ministry and industrial
A total of 68 awards were conferred, including one
Excellent Industry Award, 46 Outstanding Industry awards and 21 Outstanding
Small and Medium-sized Industry awards, plus 12 honorable awards.
The prime minister congratulated the award winning
entrepreneurs on their quality, and creative industries which take care of
the environment and employees, and are viewed as good examples for other
workplaces. The government confirmed plans to promote small and medium-sized
industries to be more competitive, use modern technology and develop
businesses in accordance with international standards. The entrepreneurs
should also take care of society, given accommodations provided by the
Many industrial structures have been adjusted while
targeted industries have been promoted to the extent that they have enhanced
manufacturing capacity, enabling reduced operating costs in the future. What
has already been started may be strengthened with the participation of all
sectors regarding quality development and the environment.
The prime minister said that entrepreneurs shouldn’t
focus on low investment capital and high profits. He encouraged the private
sector to donate money or useful items to flood victims, through the Prime
Minister’s Office’s Permanent Secretary Office which has opened a donation
PM dodges opposition questions over flawed oath
Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha smiles before
answering a question at parliament in Bangkok, Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2019.
(AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit)
Busaba Sivasomboon and Tassanee Vejpongsa
Bangkok (AP) —Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha
came under fire Wednesday in parliamentary debate for having omitted a key
phrase when taking his oath of office in July, but dodged opposition demands
that he explain why he left it out.
Prayuth's failure to include a sentence swearing
allegiance to the constitution when he led his Cabinet in taking the oath of
office in front of HM King Maha Vajiralongkorn has raised questions about
the legitimacy of his government.
The opposition demanded that Prayuth resign in addition
to explaining why he did not recite the full oath.
The PM attended much of Wednesday's debate, but when he
spoke, he addressed only budget matters and not the oath-taking.
He told reporters afterward that it was his right not
to respond to the oath question.
Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam, the
government's chief legal expert, responded to the opposition by saying HM
the King had acknowledged the oath, which indicated it was valid because the
matter was between the Cabinet and the monarch.
He mentioned a royal message, released in late August
but dated the day of the oath-taking, encouraging the Cabinet ministers to
perform their duties according to the oath they swore. The message, he
indicated, was a sign of royal approval.
His statement closely echoed a statement from the
Constitutional Court, which earlier this month was asked to rule on
complaints forwarded by the state ombudsman from two citizens who charged
that Prayuth's failure to pledge allegiance to the constitution was a breach
of the charter, which requires the full oath.
The court, however, said it lacked jurisdiction because
the oath was a matter between the executive branch and the King, and also
mentioned the royal message of encouragement.
The opposition nevertheless tried to press its
contention that Prayuth had failed to carry out his duty properly.
Piyabutr Saengkanokkul, a prominent member of the
opposition Future Forward Party, said Prayuth should resign "to show
political responsibility for the matter of incomplete oath recitation, to
uphold the constitution of the Kingdom of Thailand, to uphold the democratic
system under the King, and to allow the Kingdom of Thailand to have a leader
with dignity who is an honor to the country, to the head of the state, and
to its people."
The PM won another challenge Wednesday when the
Constitutional Court ruled that he was not a state official when he took
office as prime minister following the military coup that overthrew the
elected government in 2014.
Bank of Thailand advises customers to use new chip cards
Bangkok - The Bank of Thailand is advising
holders of debit and ATM cards with magnetic stripes to use chip cards
Sirithida Phanomwan na Ayutthaya, an assistant governor
of the Bank of Thailand in the payment policy and financial technology
section, said the use of chip cards provides more safety than debit or ATM
cards and prevents the use of fake cards which might contain data from
stolen debit or ATM cards via ATMs.
Since 2016, the Bank of Thailand has cooperated with
the Thai Bankers Association and other financial institutions to encourage
the use of chip cards. All debit cards and ATM cards are expected to be
replaced by the end of this year since they will no longer be usable at ATMs
or card swiping machines after January 15, 2020.
According to financial institutions, about 47 million
chip cards are currently in use, while about 20 million magnetic-striped
cards are currently used nationwide. The Bank of Thailand has called on the
holders of magnetic stripes cards to contact any branch of their bank and
change their cards by producing their ID card, debit or ATM card and bank
account book. No service fee is charged.
Those who don’t change their magnetic-striped cards to
chip cards may still withdraw or transfer money at a bank or transfer money
using mobile or internet banking.
12 western, southern districts on flood alert this week
Bangkok - More heavy rain is expected in the
northern and central regions this week, while 12 districts in the western
and southern region’s west coast are on alert for possible flooding from
The Office of National Water Resources (ONWR) has
announced that a monsoonal trench will prevail over the lower parts of the
northern and northeastern regions, transforming into a low pressure system
over Cambodia. This situation will increase precipitation and cause heavy
rain in some parts, which will help fill dams currently at a low level such
as Pa Sak Jolasid, Kraseaw, and Thap Salao.
The forecast doesn’t pose any concerns for dams in the
Chao Phraya River Basin, namely Bhumibol, Sirikit, Kwai Noi Bamrung Dan, and
Pa Sak Jolasid, which have the capacity to hold much more water, while
retention areas have been prepared for rainwater downstream from those
locations. The reservoir of the Chao Phraya Dam has reduced its discharge
rate to 750 cubic meters per second.
There are however concerns about monsoonal effects in
the western, upper southern, and eastern regions which may see more heavy
rain. The ONWR has ordered officials at Kaeng Krachan Dam and Pranburi Dam
to ensure all water management protocols are strictly followed. Heavy rains
are expected from the end of this week, resulting in a rapid flow of water
into the dams’ reservoirs.
The situation also poses flood risks over the next
three days in 12 districts of six provinces, namely Khlung district in
Chanthaburi; Khlong Yai, Bo Rai, and Ko Chang districts in Trat; Muang and
Kraburi districts in Ranong; Tha Yang, Muang, and Ban Laem districts in
Phetchaburi; Bang Saphan and Bang Saphan Noi districts in Prachuap Khiri
Khan; and Tha Sae district in Chumphon. Local authorities have been
instructed to prepare for possible flooding and to notify villagers.
Government reviews solutions to southern border problems
Pattani - The government has been reviewing
potential solutions to southern border provinces’ problems, emphasizing that
policies must adhere to lawful actions based on equality and observing human
A group of special representatives of the government,
led by Gen Chaichan Changmongkhol, Deputy Minister of Defense, visited the
headquarters of the 15th Infantry Division in Pattani province to gain a
first-hand understanding of the operations of various agencies dedicated to
solving insurgency problems in the south.
The general called on all in attendance to adhere to
the government’s policy of solving problems by peaceful means, enforcing the
law fairly and avoiding discrimination. He said that to ensure the safety of
the lives and property of the people, it is necessary to solve the problems
of influential figures, drugs, human trafficking and the trafficking of
illegal items in the area by focusing on the participation of all
communities, especially religious leaders and other local figures. He asked
for an enhancement of surveillance by using technology and CCTV networks
In steering the peace dialogue process, Gen Chaichan
commented it is necessary to create understanding and gain the participation
of the local people, while continuing to improve their quality of life and
well-being in all areas.
DLT to inspect public transport every 90km
Bangkok - Pheeraphol Thawornsuphacharoen,
Director-General of the Department of Land Transport (DLT), has disclosed
that the DLT will be conducting safety inspections on all forms of public
transport to ensure that the drivers and vehicles meet the required safety
standard, at checking points every 90 kilometers across the country.
The DLT is cooperating with the Highways Police
Division and Transport Company Limited in the inspection of public transport
around the clock every day. Public transport operators who try to skip the
safety checks are punishable under the Land Transport Act B.E. 2522 Section
31 (10) or Section 32 (6).
Inspections will check the vehicles’ condition, and its
documentation, as well as signs of alcohol or drug use in the drivers.
Digital Ministry, LINE launches Stop Fake News seminar
Bangkok - The Minister of a Digital Economy and
Society, Puttipong Punnakanta, presided this week over the opening ceremony
of a Stop Fake News seminar in Bangkok, aimed at promoting online media
literacy and discretion to prevent the spread of misinformation.
The seminar was organized by social media platform LINE
Thailand, with communication arts and journalism students participating.
LINE Thailand CEO Phichet Rerkpreecha said the company has been cooperating
with the Ministry of a Digital Economy and Society to set up an anti- Fake
News Center, operating to prevent the spread of fake news.
The ministry’s Fake News Center is being set up by a
team working to verify the correctness and accuracy of information, using
specific technologies in keeping with international standards. LINE will be
visiting the center to follow up on its establishment and operations.
Phichet said that LINE currently has 44 million users,
while its LINE TODAY news service now has more than 1 trillion hits per
month. He said the seminar marks a good start to creating an understanding
among the news audience and their ability to discern fake news and
A further seminar will also be held in Khon Kaen where
some 400 communication arts and journalism students and teachers will be
Popular panda on loan from China dies in Thai zoo
April 4, 2007, file photo, a male panda named Chuang Chuang chews bamboo
leaves inside its cage at the Chiang Mai zoo. (AP Photo/Apichart Weerawong)
Bangkok (AP) — Zoo staff in northern Thailand
donned black and white clothing and observed a minute of silence to mourn
the sudden death of their popular male giant panda, which was on a long-term
loan from China.
Officials said Chuang Chuang collapsed Monday in his
enclosure at the Chiang Mai Zoo shortly after standing up following a meal
of bamboo leaves.
Staff said Tuesday they found no sign of illness or
injury on the 19-year-old panda's body, and that he had recently passed a
A zoo veterinarian said pandas have a life expectancy
of 14-20 years.
Chuang Chuang and his female mate arrived in Chiang Mai
in 2003 on a 10-year loan that was later extended for another 10 years.
Bangkok City Hall urges public not to litter Chao Phraya River
Bangkok - The Bangkok Metropolis Assembly (BMA)
has launched a campaign urging residents along the Chao Phraya River not to
litter or discharge waste matter into the river.
Officials from the BMA have also taken to boats to
remove pests along the river as part of a landscaping renovation project
prior to the nomination of the Chao Phraya River as one of 28 sites on the
World Monuments Fund’s 2018 World Monuments Watch. The campaigners delivered
campaign stickers to members of the general public and merchants in Wang
Lang market and Wang Lang community in Bangkok Noi district.
"As a first step, we will pilot the project on the
section between Phra Pinklao Bridge and Memorial Bridge. This pilot area is
currently a special area free of water hyacinth, litter, and unwanted waste
in the river. We will have to talk to villagers regarding wastewater. The
problem is we currently have no treatment facilities, and all wastewater is
discharged into the river,” said BMA official Paitoon Khumpharat.
The Assembly is planning to construct a waste water
treatment facility in Thonburi to help overcome water pollution issues in
the Chao Phraya River and adjoining canals. The facility will serve an area
of 36.44 square kilometers, which will be used as a park to help improve the
Half of the 147 tigers rescued from Thai temple have died
Monday, May 30, 2016, file photo, wildlife officials begin removing some of
the 147 tigers held at a "Tiger Temple" in Saiyok district of Kanchanaburi
province. (AP Photo)
Bangkok (AP) — More than half the tigers rescued
three years ago from a Buddhist temple in Thailand where they served as a
popular tourist attraction have died of disease, wildlife officials said
The tigers were vulnerable to illness because of
inbreeding, leading to laryngeal paralysis causing respiratory failure, said
national parks official Patarapol Maneeorn. Eighty-six of 147 rescued tigers
kept at government-run wildlife sanctuaries have died.
The DNA of all 147 confiscated tigers could be traced
to six tigers who were the original breeding stock, said Patarapol, head of
the department's Wildlife Health Management Division.
Such inbreeding "affects their well-being, resulting in
disabilities and weakened health condition," he said at a news conference.
"And when they have weakened genetic traits, they also have problems with
their immune system as well."
The temple in the western province of Kanchanaburi
served for more than a decade as a de facto zoo where tourists could feed
tigers and pose for photos with them, despite concerns about possible
mistreatment and suspicions of wildlife trafficking.
Police found tiger skins and teeth and at least 1,500
amulets made from tiger bones when they raided the temple, as well as 60 cub
carcasses stuffed in freezers and in formaldehyde in jars.
Tiger parts, such as ground bones, are popular as
traditional medicine in Asia. Tiger hides can sell for tens of thousands of
dollars in China.
There are estimated to be more than 1,000 tigers in
captivity in Thailand, but only about 200 in the wild out of a global wild
population of about 4,000.
Patarapol said Thai authorities would do their best to
care for the surviving rescued tigers.
"We are mobilizing team members, increasing our
readiness and adjusting our plan," he said. "We will provide the best care
Government says flood victims have not been abandoned
Bangkok - Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha
said the government is racing to provide relief for flood victims and has
been setting up of temporary shelters along with providing food, water and
medical services. Once the situation improves, authorities will assess the
damage and start restoration work.
The government also plans to provide prompt relief
payments for flood victims under official protocols, such as a payment for
living expense, a payment for damaged tools, machinery, farmland and
fisheries or livestock. In the case of a totally destroyed house, the owner
is entitled to 200,000 baht for the procurement of construction materials.
Every affected province will set up a committee to look
after the donated money and items so that they will reach flood victims. The
prime minister has instructed all government agencies to work scrupulously
and to see to it that no complaints of corruption are filed.
Energy minister stays calm on Saudi refinery attacks
Minister Sontirat Sontijirawong.
Bangkok – Thailand’s Energy Minister, Sontirat
Sontijirawong, said Saturday’s drone attacks on two major oil refinery
plants in Saudi Arabia, which is the world’s largest oil exporting country,
have not affected Thailand as an oil importing country.
Sontirat said the Ministry of Energy has received
reports that there has been no immediate effect on the exports of Saudi oil,
since the attacks did not affect Aramco’s oil tank farm from which oil is
exported to the Petroleum Authority of Thailand. However, the ministry has
laid out plans to cope with emergency situations, similar to those applied
during the earlier Hormuz Strait incident.
Sontirat said Thailand has an adequate volume of crude
oil in reserve and sufficient refined oil and would have no shortage problem
if Saudi oil exports were in trouble on a short-term basis.
Terracotta Warriors exhibition opens in Bangkok
Bangkok - The Minister of Culture, Itthiphol
Khunpluem, attended the premiere of the “Qin Shi Huang: The First Emperor of
China and the Terracotta Warriors" exhibition on Monday in Bangkok.
The exhibition features 133 historic relics, many of
which are over 2,200 years old. They are from 14 leading museums in the
People’s Republic of China and are on display at the Sivamok Phiman Throne
Hall at the Bangkok National Museum in Phra Nakhon district.
Thai citizens and foreign tourists are invited to visit
the special exhibition, which is open to the public from Wednesday to Sunday
until December 15, 2019, from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Every Sunday, people can visit
the exhibition as a family, free of charge.
Police receive 1,000 tips about illegal road races over 3 months
Police Commissioner General Pol Lt Gen Damrongsak Kittiprapas.
Bangkok - Police have revealed the number of
tips reporting illegal road racing reached about 1,000 over three months,
with rewards already given to some informers.
Assistant Police Commissioner General Pol Lt Gen
Damrongsak Kittiprapas has announced the outcome from the illegal road race
suppression campaign from 3-10 September 2019, where 188 persons submitted
information about illegal races via the 191 emergency hotline, 1599
complaint center, and the national police’s social media center. Rewards
have been given to three persons so far at 3,000 baht each.
From 27 June to 8 September, police prosecuted 986
persons for illegal and unsafe racing and driving, and supporting unsafe
racing or driving. For cases involving minors, the parents are held
responsible according to the Child Protection Act.
In addition to racing cases, the police seized some
57,000 motorcycles from those violating the traffic law, and prosecuted some
200 shops for selling illegal automobile modification accessories.
The police’s intensified operations have led to a
decrease in violations of about 80 percent. Persons submitting information
related to illegal racing may be able to get a cash reward if they are able
to provide concrete evidence, such as video clips, exact location and time
of the violation. Most of the information being received by the police,
however, cannot be clearly verified.
Nong Nooch elephant gets new home
Lampang – Nong Nooch Garden in Pattaya has
transferred baby elephant “Phang Fah Jaem” to his new home at the Thailand
Elephant Conservation Center in Lampang. The infant pachyderm, then aged
just 3 months, was adopted by the garden in 2016 to treat his wounds after
he was severely injured by a vicious animal trap in Kaeng Hangmaew district
of Chanthaburi province.
Kamphol Tansajja, Director of Nong Nooch Garden, said
the staff at the garden considered “Phang Fah Jaem” as a family member.
Veterinarians and mahouts took care of him for the past 3 years and an adult
female elephant fed him milk until he was fully recovered. Kamphol said the
baby elephant would remain in the memory of the Nong Nooch Garden family
forever but it was considered the Thailand Elephant Conservation Center was
the most suitable place for him now.
Ministry presents Environmentally Sustainable City Awards
Bangkok - The Ministry of Natural Resources and
the Environment has presented the annual Environmentally Sustainable City
Awards to 107 provincial, district and sub-district municipalities
nationwide at the Environmentally Sustainable City workshop.
The 107 qualified municipalities have all met four
essential requirements and 34 indicators, such as the people’s well-being
and happiness, sustainable environment, learning activities and the quality
of management, with the objective of being on par with ASEAN and the
The environmental impact has become more concerning
due to urbanization and climate change. Exceptional awards were given to 52
municipalities, outstanding awards to 40 municipalities and respectable
awards to 15 municipalities. In addition, nine cities received awards under
the Green City project.
All 107 municipalities will jointly step up their
environmental conservation efforts, encourage children to help protect the
nation’s natural resources and environment, and deal with situations, such
as flooding and threats to marine biodiversity.
Thailand becomes world’s biggest rubber exporter
Sapthaweetham, DTN Director General.
Bangkok - The Department of Trade
Negotiations (DTN) has disclosed that Thailand is the world’s largest
rubber exporter, in part thanks to its free trade agreements with many
Auramon Sapthaweetham, DTN Director General,
disclosed that she had followed up on the situation of Thai rubber
exports. In 2018, Thailand exported rubber worth over 4.6 billion US
dollars, which accounted for 1.82 percent of total Thai exports. China
was the biggest market, importing Thai rubber worth 1.96 billion US
dollars, 43 percent of total Thai rubber exports. Other major markets
were Southeast Asian nations, the United States, Japan and South Korea.
The rubber export leadership resulted in part from
Thailand’s 13 free trade agreements with 18 countries, providing trade
opportunities which help boost the export of Thai rubber products.