Thailand seeks ASEAN-wide cooperation on illegal fishing policies
Bangkok - Thailand has hosted a
meeting between representatives of ASEAN nations to crackdown on illegal
fishing activities in the region.
Thailand's Deputy Agriculture and
Cooperatives Minister, Luck Wajananawat, reminded attendees of the
deterioration seen in marine ecosystems in the ASEAN region due to over
fishing and illegal activities in protected areas. He called for concerted
efforts between member nations to enforce fishing policies, to boost
confidence among consumers and trade partners, to prevent aquatic animal
diseases and to crack down on illegal fishing.
Director-General of the Department of
Fisheries, Adisorn Promthep, said Thailand's own measures to address illegal
fishing include registering fishing vessels, monitoring traffic, installing
tracking systems on vessels and amending laws where appropriate.
The meeting aims to establish a
consensus on illegal fishing policies, create an ASEAN-wide database for
fishing vessels and share information on vessel traffic. So far, only
Thailand, Indonesia and Myanmar have agreed to cooperate on these agenda.
Don Muang New Market operator could face legal action
Bangkok - Police are set to take
legal action against the operator of Don Muang New Market for violating
Deputy Commissioner of the Tourist
Police Bureau, Pol Maj Gen. Surachet Hakpan convened a meeting Wednesday
with officials from the Anti-Money Laundering Office, the Revenue
Department, Don Muang District Office and the Food and Drug Administration
regarding a lawsuit against the operator.
They reviewed the evidence involving
those suspected of invading public spaces, selling substandard food and
beauty items and forcing vendors to pay extra money for their businesses.
Pol Maj Gen. Surachet said all cases will be handled fairly.
Meanwhile, Pol Lt Col Santhana
Prayoonrat, Advisor to Pattana Talad Mai Don Muang Co Ltd, said he was not
collecting extra fees from vendors at the market as accused, claiming that
the money was for expenses related to security, traffic management and
cleaning. However, Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha said it is
inappropriate for Pol Lt Col Santhana to be doing such a thing.
Checkpoints set up in Rayong to prevent sale of unripe durians
Rayong - Rayong authorities have set up
checkpoints to prevent vendors and farmers from selling unripe durians to
consumers, as durian prices continue to rise.
Klaeng District Chief Wittaya Chapanont and a group of
village heads, soldiers, police officers and local agriculture officials set
up three checkpoints in Klaeng district in an attempt to stop unripe durians
from being delivered to consumer markets.
The need for 24-hour checkpoints was due in part to the
growing demand for the fruit. Vendors and farmers could be taking advantage
of the rising prices by selling unripe durians to consumers in the hope of
making fast money.
The three checkpoints in Klaeng district were set up on
roads reportedly used by dodgy vendors. However, no unripe durians have so
far been found at these checkpoints. The inspection will continue for one
Preparation for Royal Ploughing Ceremony makes 80% progress
Bangkok - Deputy Permanent
Secretary to the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, Surapong
Cheasakul attended a meeting with various governmental agencies this week to
discuss preparations for the upcoming Royal Ploughing Ceremony.
The Deputy Permanent Secretary said
during the meeting that preparations have made 80% progress. No difficulties
have been reported during the construction of the venue for the ancient
ceremony which will take place on May 14.
More rehearsals will be carried out to
ensure the readiness of the venue.
The ploughing festival has been held
every year since ancient times to mark the start of the rice growing season.
217 officials found embezzling state funds for the destitute
PACC Secretary-General Lt.Col. Kornthip Daroj
talks to the media.
Chiang Mai - The Office of the
Public Sector Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) has reported 50% progress in
its investigation into the embezzlement of state funds for the destitute in
Chiang Mai province.
PACC Secretary-General Lt.Col. Kornthip
Daroj visited the Chiang Mai Protection Center for the Destitute to follow
up on the alleged malfeasance. He noted that investigators found it
difficult to contact all 1,000 victims, as they live in remote areas of
Chiang Mai province.
Investigations in 67 other provinces
also found 217 low and high-ranking officials involved in the embezzlement
of the state funds. They will be subjected to disciplinary action by the
Ministry of Social Development and Human Security.
More investigations are expected to be
conducted at 28 highland development and co-op centers in Chiang Mai, Chiang
Rai, Lamphun, Lampang and Nan to examine whether other state funds have been
PM backs idea to develop Buriram as sports city
Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha rides a motorcycle at the Chang International
Circuit in Buriram, Monday, May 7.
Buriram - Prime Minister Prayut
Chan-o-cha has told the people of Buriram that he hopes to see their
provincial capital be developed as a sports city.
The PM on Monday met with around 30,000
Buriram residents at the Chang Arena Stadium in Mueang district. He said
Buriram is a city of culture and people in the province live together
peacefully, setting a good example for society. However, the premier
expressed his concerns over the province’s low per capita income and
suggested the local people use technology with marketing and e-commerce to
better sell their agricultural produce.
Buriram has changed for the better in
terms of economy, tourism and sports, the PM said. The province could be
developed as a sports city with a national sports university and medical
center, he said.
Buriram has been chosen to host the
MotoGP motorcycle racing events for three consecutive years from 2018 -
2020. The province has an important policy to develop its sports tourism.
Investigation underway at hospital in Sa Kaeo following death of 2-year-old girl
Dr. Jedsada Chokdamrongsuk.
Bangkok - The Ministry of Public
Health has set up a panel to investigate the death of a 2-year old girl
following a complaint from her parents.
Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of
Public Health, Dr. Jedsada Chokdamrongsuk said that his ministry is
expediting its effort to develop a nationwide one-stop medical service to
increase public access to medical care and lower the number of deaths.
Regarding the death of the 2-year old
girl at Somdet Phrayupharacha Sa Kaeo Hospital, Dr. Jedsada said an
investigation is now underway to prove whether the alleged closure of the
hospital’s ER department was in fact the cause of the child’s death.
Despite the claim, the Permanent
Secretary said every hospital is equipped and ready to provide
around-the-clock medical care to every patient. The family of the girl will
be compensated a maximum of 400,000 baht according to Section 41 of Medical
Treatment Compensation Act.
Thailand to introduce new passport with 10-years validity
Bangkok - A new Thailand passport will be
introduced with a validity for 10 years, twice as long as the current one.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) announced that it
is progressing with the introduction of a third edition of the electronic
passport, which will come out with a 10-year validity for holders over the
age of 20 years.
Deputy MFA Permanent-Secretary Thani Thongphakdi said
the longer validity will provide greater conveniences for travelers who will
no longer have to renew their passport as frequently, while the passport
validity for persons aged under 20 years will remain unchanged at five years
as the biometric facial features for young people can still change.
The new passport will store more security features with
biometric data of holders, including iris scans, in keeping with the
International Civil Aviation Organization's (ICAO) requirements.
The MFA is currently drafting the Terms of Reference
(TOR) for private firms in a transparent bidding process to manufacture the
new passport. The fee for the new passport has yet to be announced.
Asia threatened by Carfentanil adulterant
(Photo/RCMP via AP)
Bangkok - The Asian region is
facing a threat of Carfentanil, a lethal chemical used as adulterant in
illicit drugs currently widespread in Europe, said International Narcotics
Control Board (INCB) chief Wiroj Sumyai.
He said there has been a widespread use
of the lethal chemical named Carfentanil in Europe and Asia at an alarming
Carfentanil comes as white powder
commonly used with heroin by smugglers who sought to raise the drug's prices
and the consumption of the adulterant might result in death. There is
currently no known withdrawal for such chemical, unlike heroin which can be
The INCB chief said there were some
10,000 deaths due to the use of Carfentanil in the United States in 2017.
The chemical, which is considered much more dangerous than cocaine or
heroin, can be absorbed through the skin, which can cause acute failures to
the respiratory system.
The authorities are keeping an eye on
Carfentanil which might be smuggled into Asia via an online black market
using BitCoin or other crypto-currencies.
The INCB has established agreements
with postal service providers in many countries on the inspection of
suspicious packages using scientific equipment as an attempt to stop the
The Asian region has been reportedly
prone to the trafficking of methamphetamine.
Buriram gears up for MotoGP 2018
Buriram - Tourism and Sports
Minister Weerasak Kowsurat has confirmed that Buriram province will host a
MotoGP race from October 5th - 7th this year.
Public and private agencies are
collaborating to host the motorcycle racing event at the province's Chang
International Circuit and ensure the stadium receives Grade A certification
from the International Motorcycling Federation. The stadium is to undergo
renovations, including pit lane expansions and adding stadium seating to
accommodate over 50,000 viewers.
The Tourism Authority of Thailand has
also trained 500 police officers, military personnel, nurses, and students
as language interpreters and will deploy them in many key locations. A
shuttle service from the local airport and bus terminal will be available,
while over 1,000 security officials will be deployed to safeguard the
running of the competition.
The event, which will be broadcast live
to 207 countries around the world, is an opportunity to stimulate the local
economy and elevate the image of Thailand as a prominent destination for
Wet weather conditions expected in capital and rural provinces
Bangkok - The national weather
bureau expects that the capital and several rural provinces will experience
more rainfall from now to May 12.
According to the Meteorological
Department, Bangkok and its vicinity have a 60% chance of precipitation over
the next couple of days, while the South will likely experience heavy rain
during the same period. It also forecasts similar weather conditions in the
North from May 9 to 12.
Previously the capital and nearby
provinces experienced heavy rain and inundation in several areas including
Bangkok’s Lak Si, Bang Khen, Don Muang, Sai Mai districts, and other
districts of Nakhon Pathom, Chachoengsao, and Nonthaburi. Ngamwongwan road
was severely flooded. Rattanathibet road in Nonthaburi was also heavily
inundated, triggering hours of traffic congestion.
The department also reported flash
floods in Phetchabun and Uthai Thani provinces. About 3,000 rai of
agricultural areas in Si Bun Rueang and Lan Sak districts of Uthai Thani
were submerged, damaging newly planted crops, roads and residences.
In Phetchabun, flash floods inundated
157 households in the capital district, and 90 rai of farmland. Initially,
officials were dispatched to provide assistance and clean up the area.
Floods also ruined a major organic farm ‘Greenfield Farm & Bistro,’ causing
more than five million baht in damage.
PM wishes to foster reconciliation among politicians
Bangkok - Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha
has said he wants to cultivate a culture of reconciliation between the
ruling party and the opposition as a basis for a peaceful society.
In his national televised speech on Sunday, Gen Prayut
pointed out that the members of the public are familiar with a parliamentary
system where the ruling party administers the nation and the opposition
party keeps the government in check, adding that the existence of both sides
is solely to protect the best interests of the public.
The prime minister said he wished to rename the
opposition party the “opposing and supportive party” so as to change the
negative vibe in parliament.
Under the proposed term, the opposing and supportive
side will hold the ruling party accountable to the public while at the same
time contributing to development projects and reform related undertakings.
This way, he said, the country will be able to
cultivate a culture of reconciliation, unity, and trust, and the upper and
lower houses will be able to settle differences rationally and peacefully.
Kanchanaburi pushes for Death Railway to become World Heritage Site
Kanchanaburi - Kanchanaburi is pushing for its
historically significant Death Railway to become a World Heritage Site.
A public hearing was held at the River Kwai Hotel in
Kanchanaburi over the weekend to hear the views of local residents. The
event was presided over by Kanchanaburi Governor Jirakiat Phumsawat. Almost
52 per cent of local residents backed a proposal by a national committee on
the protection of cultural world heritage sites to have the railway line
recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, according to results of a survey
by Kanchanaburi Provincial Office of Culture and Kanchanaburi Rajabhat
The relevant authorities will then prepare a report to
apply for the recognition of Death Railway.
A World Heritage Site is a landmark or area selected by
the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation
(UNESCO) as having cultural, historical, scientific or other form of
significance, and is legally protected by international treaties.
Don Mueang market searched for illegal beauty products
Bangkok - Crime-busting and
public health agencies have continued with their joint crackdown on the
production of illegal beauty items in Don Mueang district of Bangkok.
More than 800 policemen and Food and
Drug Administration (FDA) officials raided Talat Mai Don Mueang on Sunday,
targeting 67 remaining shops. The raid found 164 outlets were selling
illegal goods, including cosmetics and food supplements. Many of them
claimed to be imports from South Korea, Japan and Europe.
The FDA Secretary-General, Dr Wanchai
Sattayawuttipong said that legally imported goods must carry Thai-language
registration labels issued by the FDA. Meantime, a large volume of beauty
items and seven machines have been seized for inspection.
Deputy national police chief, Pol
General Weerachai Songmetta disclosed that police will examine whether the
market's owner has violated construction laws or has breached the lease
contract with the Treasury Department.
Thailand remains on US’s IP watch list
Commerce Minister Sonthirat Sonthijirawong.
Bangkok - The Ministry of
Commerce has revealed that Thailand is still on the US’s intellectual
property watch list despite its continued efforts to crack down on
violations of intellectual property rights.
Commerce Minister Sonthirat
Sonthijirawong says the U.S. Trade Representative’s annual report on global
IP infringements included Thailand on the Watch List under the 2018 Special
Thailand moved up from the bottom tier
(Priority Watch List) in December last year, which has since boosted the
country’s image, trade, and investment.
The report stressed that there remain
IP concerns in Thailand such as counterfeit pharmaceuticals, border and
criminal enforcement against counterfeiting, government use of unlicensed
software, procedural obstacles to enforcement against unauthorized
camcording, just to name some.
Sonthirat promised that the current
administration will continue to fight all forms of IP infringement and
develop new measures to protect IP rights.
Interior Ministry sets up flood command centers across country
Bangkok - The Interior Ministry
has instructed all agencies to prepare disaster prevention measures ahead of
the upcoming rainy season.
The Department of Disaster Prevention
and Mitigation (DDPM) has set up emergency command units at all
administrative areas to monitor the situation in flood-prone communities
around the clock.
The DDPM has been working closely with
the Meteorological Department, Hydro and Agro Informatics Institute, the
Geo-Informatics and Space Technology Development Agency (GISTDA), Department
of Water Resources, Royal Irrigation Department and the military in mapping
out flood prevention and relief measures.
The DDPM has estimated that the rainy
season will start in the third week of May.
Thailand becomes world’s No.1 rice exporter
Bangkok - The Department of Foreign Trade (DFT)
says that Thailand has become the world’s No.1 rice exporter during first
four months of this year.
From January 1 to April 17, the nation exported some
3.31 million of rice. Last year, Thailand exported about 11.63 million tons
DFT Director General Adul Chotinisakorn said Thai rice
exports are expected to grow continually on the back of news that the
Kingdom was this week awarded a contract to export 120,000 tonnes of rice to
the Philippines. He said that the prices of most kinds of exported rice
rose continually in April and major export markets are located in the
Philippines, Africa and China.
Use of cap seals to be phased out in one year
Bangkok - The Pollution Control
Department has sought cooperation from 7,000 water bottle manufacturers to
stop using plastic cap seals within a year, in order to reduce plastic
The department has also sent letters to
19 ministries, the Food and Drug Administration, and the Federation of the
Thai Industries to seek their cooperation in promoting water bottles without
cap seals. They are expected to cultivate an understanding among their
employees that drinking from a bottle without the seal is just as safe.
To eliminate cap seals nationwide,
schools, hotels, religious institutes, banks and airlines have been
discouraged from buying bottles with cap seals. Cap seals are expected to be
phased out completely by 2019.
PM reviews exhibition on digital innovation
Bangkok - Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha
attended an innovation exhibition organized by the Ministry of Digital
Economy and Society on Friday.
Notable works on display included the Digital Park
Thailand project, which is the country's first center for supporting
investment in digital innovations. At the center, CAT Telecom will provide
the high-speed broadband infrastructure necessary to connect with submarine
cables across the world.
Another project is the Big Data Analytics Sandbox by
CAT Telecom, which displays market trends and other useful data for making
business and policy decisions. Other exhibitions included the coordination
center on cyber security, the cyber security personnel development project,
and a demonstration of digital forensics verification.
The Prime Minister thanked everyone for their hard work
over the past four years. He urged officials to implement the government's
policies, such as state administration reform, according to the national
Maha Sarakham announces rabies epidemic zones in 2 subdistricts
Maha Sarakham - Maha Sarakham
province has recently declared rabies outbreaks in Wapi Pathum district,
after detecting the virus in a dog and a buffalo calf.
Chatchawan Prasert of the Provincial
Livestock Department revealed that on April 11, villagers in Hua Ruea
subdistrict reported that a feral dog had bitten 14 dogs and five villagers.
The dog was later diagnosed with rabies. The Wapi Pathum District Livestock
Office therefore announced a rabies epidemic zone in Hua Ruea subdistrict.
Officials have vaccinated the bitten villagers and quarantined the 14 dogs.
Another epidemic zone was announced in
Nong Saeng subdistrict, where a two-year-old calf died of rabies on April
18. The calf is suspected to have contracted the virus from a dog bite. The
Wapi Pathum District Livestock Office has responded by vaccinating 42 dogs
and one cat.
Laem Chabang port holds market sounding for Phase Three development
Chonburi - Laem Chabang port is
pushing forward Phase Three of its development project with a market
Deputy Transport Minister Pailin
Chuchottaworn said the Phase Three plan, a 1,600-rai development project,
will be performed as on PPP basis between the public and private sectors,
with the Port Authority of Thailand being responsible for the investment in
the construction of infrastructure, the excavation of canals, and the
installation of utilities with a 40 billion baht budget.
The private sector will invest in the
container yard development, the installation of logistics technology and the
construction of piers, with the investment budget estimated at 80 billion
The planned expansion of Laem Chabang
port will add five more piers to the existing facilities, with four piers
being for cargo ships, and one other for ferry boats, passenger ships, and
small cargo ships.
Two more negotiations with private
firms will be held prior to the summarization of the project and the
proposal to the cabinet by the end of this year. The construction is
expected to commence in early 2019, and will take five-years to complete.
The port's new facilities are expected to be operational in 2024.
The expansion will turn Laem Chabang
port into an important logistics gateway for the Eastern Economic Corridor,
being one of the 20 most important ports of the world, and being the most
important port in ASEAN. The port capacity will be expanded from 11 million
containers to 18 million annually, cutting down the country's logistics
costs for export from 14 percent to 12 percent, or saving about 250 billion
Govt affirms availability of rabies vaccines
Bangkok - The government has affirmed its
commitment to eliminating rabies and has assured the general public there is
enough vaccine available.
In a hearing held by the National Legislative Assembly
(NLA), lawmaker Wallop Tangkananurak asked Deputy Agriculture and
Cooperatives Minister Luck Wajananawat about the government's rabies
prevention plan, the quantity of available vaccines, and its policy to
support domestic vaccine production.
Luck said his agency has been tackling rabies since the
outbreak in 1992 and has since reduced the rate of contraction. Due to a new
outbreak in 2016-17, the government has put in place a strategy for 2017-20
in accordance with Thailand's shared goals with the World Health
Organization to eliminate rabies by 2020.
Measures include procuring one million doses of rabies
vaccines to meet the government's goal of inoculating dogs across the
country. The deputy minister affirmed that there is enough vaccine and
expressed confidence the country will be able to meet its goals.
Furthermore, the ministry has tasked the Department of
Livestock Development with studying the feasibility of domestically
producing the vaccine and will be able to reach a conclusion by September.
Kanchanaburi court grants bail to construction tycoon Premchai and employees
Kanchanaburi - Thong Pha Phum
Provincial Court of Kanchanaburi province has granted bail to Italian-Thai
Development president Premchai Karnasuta and three company employees accused
of poaching at the Thungyai Naresuan Wildlife Sanctuary.
The court on Wednesday spent around two
and a half hours completing the defense examination procedure before
allowing Premchai and three others, Yong Dodkrua, Nathee Riamsaen, and
Thanee Thummat to apply for bail. The suspects have reported to the court
for the last round.
Bail was raised to 400,000 baht each
for Premchai, Thanee and Yong. Nathee meantime was required to post bail of
150,000 baht for her release. The suspects face at least six charges of
trespassing in a wildlife sanctuary and hunting protected animals, including
a black Indochinese leopard, a Kalij pheasant and a barking deer.
Premchai insisted he did not order his
men to kill the leopard. The court is due to examine the plaintiff's
witnesses on May 21 and has asked the public to trust the justice system.
Farmers start cultivation as drought ends prematurely
Saraburi - Persistent rainfall
in several provinces has caused farmers to begin planting rice ahead of
schedule and prompted disaster management agencies to prepare themselves for
Farmers in Saraburi province are
pumping water into their paddy fields to begin rice cultivation, after the
Royal Irrigation Department began supplying water on May 1. Local farmers
have chosen to grow the Kor Khor 41 rice strain to complete harvesting by
September, during which natural flooding is likely to occur.
Meanwhile, in Nong Khai province, days
of thundershowers have produced ideal breeding conditions for frog farms.
Farmers have reported an increase in healthy tadpoles.
The early arrival of rainfall has
raised water levels in natural water sources in the Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife
Sanctuary in Uthai Thani province as well as of major reservoirs, benefiting
farmers in both irrigated and non-irrigated zones. The water levels of the
Thap Salao and Huai Khun Kaew reservoirs reportedly exceeded 50% of their
In Nan province, around 250 disaster
response officials across 15 districts have participated in flash flood and
mudslide-rescue training. The government has accelerated this year's rice
growing schedule by a month to prevent later flood damage, as the dry season
has ended earlier than expected.
Thai court sentences 6 to death for southern bombings
In this August 24, 2016 file photo, bomb squad
officers examine the wreckage of a car after an explosion outside a hotel in
Pattani province, southern Thailand. (AP Photo)
Hat Yai (AP) — An army spokesman says a court in southern Thailand
has condemned six men to death for several bombings in 2016 that killed two
people and wounded more than 20.
The spokesman says 10 defendants had
originally received death sentences on Monday from the Pattani Provincial
Court. Because of their cooperation, three had their sentences commuted to
life imprisonment and another to 40 years in prison.
Thailand's three southernmost provinces
of Pattani, Yala, and Narathiwat have been plagued for over a decade by
Muslim insurgents and more than 6,500 people have been killed in the
violence since 2004.
Siriraj Hospital conducts Asia's first triple organ transplant
Bangkok - Siriraj Hospital has successfully
transplanted three organs into a single patient - the first medical
achievement of its kind in Asia.
The successful operation was announced by Prof Prasit
Watanapa, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at Mahidol University in Siriraj
Hospital, and Assoc Prof Visit Vamvanit, Director of Siriraj Hospital, along
with the organ transplant team.
The surgery was performed on 26-year-old Rachanond
Rungsawan, who was admitted to hospital in August last year for heart
failure resulting in liver damage, while also suffering kidney disease since
early childhood. The medical team therefore decided to replace his kidneys,
liver, and heart with donated organs sourced by the Thai Red Cross Society.
The procedure lasted 12.5 hours, beginning with the
heart transplant, followed by the liver and kidneys. The patient then
underwent a recovery phase at Siriraj Hospital for a total of 83 days from
December 3rd, 2017, to February 23rd this year. Rachanond has now been
cleared to return home and resume his normal life, with all three organs
A triple organ transplant involving heart, kidney, and
liver has only been performed on 14 patients in the United States, and now
DE responds after hackers use Thai servers to launch attacks
Bangkok - The Ministry of the
Digital Economy and Society (DE) has assured the population that Thai
servers were not harmed when hacker groups launched recent malware attacks
on various nations, and that it has integrated the work of six groups to
DE Minister Pichet Durongkaveroj has
ordered Thammasat University to sever its digital connections and begin a
retroactive probe, while voicing confidence in the integrity of Thai data
systems as well as in global systems, which stringently protect data
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for
Defense, Gen Prawit Wongsuwan similarly voiced confidence in protections
enacted by the DE and gave an assurance that the Kingdom’s security systems
have not been damaged.
Govt to meet with citizen groups against judges' housing project in Doi Suthep
Minister Dr. Wissanu Krea-ngam.
Bangkok - The government is
scheduled to meet with civil groups in Chiang Mai province on May 6 to
address the controversy surrounding a housing project for judges in Doi
According to Deputy Prime Minister Dr.
Wissanu Krea-ngam, Minister attached to the Prime Minister's Office Suwaphan
Tanyuvardhana has been tasked with resolving the issue. Suwaphan will be put
in contact with local agencies to obtain information that will be forwarded
to Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha for a decision. So far, the
opposition movement has shown no sign of unrest or other political motives.
Suwaphan revealed that he will travel
to Chiang Mai this coming Sunday to meet with the 17 civil groups who oppose
the judges' housing project. He said he will be accompanied by the
Inspector-General of the Prime Minister's Office and will work to reach a
timely conclusion according to the Prime Minister's wishes.
PACC probe finds corruption of the destitute fund in 67 provinces
Secretary-General Lt Col Kornthip Daroj.
Bangkok - A probe into
misappropriation of funds intended to aid the destitute by the Public
Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) has found corruption in 67 provinces, with
189 civil servants involved and 264 million baht misused.
PACC Secretary-General Lt Col Kornthip
Daroj reported the findings of the probe and said similar graft was also
found in six communes helping the destitute, one homeless shelter, one
highlands development center and one village cooperative coordination
The PACC has ordered that 43 agencies
be probed and is coordinating with the National Anti-Corruption Commission
(NACC) to handle the matter.
Transgressions uncovered by the PACC
include forging of payment documents, alteration of payment documents,
embezzlement of state funds and misappropriation of funds to unqualified
Thailand earns Bt799m from foreign film productions
Bangkok - The Department of Tourism has
disclosed that revenue from foreign film productions shot in Thailand
generated 799 million baht in the first quarter of 2018.
Department Director General Anan Wongbencharat said a
total of 224 films were shot in the country last quarter, with China as the
top film producer, followed by India and the United States. Last year,
Thailand made 3.074 billion baht from 810 foreign film productions.
Anan said Thailand is considered one of the popular
countries for international film productions. He said revenue from foreign
film productions is also distributed to local communities to stimulate the
Thai authorities assist at Yangon landfill fire
Bangkok - Thailand has sent fire suppression
officials to Myanmar to advise on putting out a landfill fire on the city
limits of Yangon.
Thai authorities attended a meeting chaired by Chief
Minister of Yangon Phyo Min Thein. The meeting discussed strategies to
suppress the fire, which has been raging for over seven days. Myanmar
authorities have so far been able to extinguish a quarter of the affected
area, while the remaining area has mostly been reduced to smoke plumes.
Thai officials have recommended that firefighters dig a
firebreak around the remaining area to contain the blaze and to extinguish
the smoke plumes with water. This method had proven successful during a
landfill fire in Samut Prakan province and in many other areas in Thailand.
They also suggested evacuating any communities affected by the smoke.
The Chief Minister of Yangon expressed his gratitude to
Thailand for sharing its expertise in the matter.
Government to end need for photocopies of documents in push towards Thailand 4.0
Bangkok - A recent meeting of the Reform for
Thailand 4.0 Commission headed by Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-ocha was
briefed on the setting up of 40,000 service spots by the Electronic
Government Agency (EGA). The various locations are to begin operations this
month as part of the government’s plan to digitize public services in line
with the Thailand 4.0 agenda.
In August, the government plans to end the need for
photocopies of identification cards, home registrations and other such
documentation when seeking public service and will replace them with a
digital application. The application will be extended to juristic entity
documents in October.
In January of 2019, the Citizen Feedback service will
be launched, allowing members of the public to indicate their satisfaction
and any opinions on public service. The system will be among the first moves
towards the goal of elevating the Thai people into the 21st century. The
goal includes five principles to be instilled in all Thais; sufficiency,
discipline, morality, volunteerism and responsibility. The goal has already
been declared in joint agreements entered into by 275 organizations and
Two Thais killed in factory fire in Taiwan
Beijing (AP) — Taiwan is
mourning the deaths of five firefighters and two Thai migrant workers in a
weekend blaze at a computer equipment factory.
The fire broke out Saturday night at a
plant belonging to Chin Poon Industrial in the city of Taoyuan just south of
the capital, Taipei, the official Central News Agency reported.
CNA said the firefighters had lost
contact with colleagues outside and became trapped under heavy equipment.
Another seven firefighters were injured in the blaze, it said.
It quoted Chin Poon spokesman Hsiao
Kung-yen as saying Sunday that the first fire alarm sounded in an area where
thin layers of polymer are applied to printed circuit boards.
Large amounts of flammable chemicals
apparently fueled the blaze and five firefighters were injured by being
splashed with caustic and acidic materials. A total of 189 firefighters and
67 trucks and ambulances were sent to the scene of the fire, CNA said.
The two Thai nationals were 24-year-old
Phanupong Sangiem from Chachoengsao province and 42-year-old Chertsak
Buramsungnern from Buriram.
The two individuals were legally
employed in Taiwan and were part of the fund managed by the Department of
Employment to assist workers abroad. Therefore, their families are eligible
to receive 40,000 baht in compensation, plus a reimbursement for funeral
expenses not exceeding 40,000 baht.
Local labor officials in Chachoengsao
and Buriram were dispatched to their families' homes to offer their
condolences, as well as to inform them of their compensation. Requests from
the families to transfer the bodies back to Thailand have been forwarded to
the Thai labor office in Taipei.
ASH Thailand continues push for smoking control measures
Phuket - ASH Thailand has
stressed on the importance of smoking control measures to discourage new
smokers, help those who wish to quit smoking and protect non-smokers.
Action on Smoking and Health Foundation
(ASH Thailand) President Prakit Vathesatogkit gave a lecture this week in
Phuket on why Thailand needs to control smoking with regards to the existing
He said efforts to control smoking
started with the introduction of the Tobacco Control Act B.E. 2509, the
Non-Smokers' Health Protection Act B.E. 2535, the raise of tobacco tax, the
display of warning texts on cartons, Thailand's participation in the World
Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, and the new
Tobacco Products Control Act B.E. 2560 which was promulgated last year.
The ASH Thailand president highlighted
the number of smokers in Thailand, which reduced by 20 percent according to
a 2014 survey. The number of smokers reduced by 40 percent in the
northeastern region, by 43 percent in the northern region, 13 percent in the
southern region, 37 percent in the central region, and by 29 percent in
Bangkok. The overall number of smokers in Thailand currently accounts for 20
percent of the population.
ASH Thailand is committed to further
campaigning for the reduction in the consumption of tobacco products.
BMA starts beautifying Mahakan Fort
Bangkok - The Department of Public Works of the
Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) has started laying the groundwork
for the landscape improvement of Mahakan Fort, following the recent
relocation of the dwellers previously found invading public spaces.
Currently, only five buildings remain to be removed
after the BMA enforced the law to reclaim public spaces. The office will
spend a month reorganizing the area for public use.
Deputy Bangkok Governor Chakkapan Piewngam said the
Department of Public Works on Monday started turning the area into a
temporary public park. The process is expected to take four to six days,
before the land is ready for planting and light installation. The entire
operation is expected to complete by the end of next month.
He noted that the funding for the reorganization of
Mahakan Fort came from residents and independent organizations, stressing
that the BMA did not get involved in budgeting.
Vehicles are still allowed to use the roads around the
area during the activity. However, motorists traveling at night are advised
to use alternative routes until the installation of lamp posts in the area
Up to 38,000 foreign laborers verified by OSS centers last week
Bangkok - One Stop Service (OSS)
Centers set up to register foreign laborers in Thailand have reported nearly
38,000 registrations over the first week of operation, with the Ministry of
Labor encouraging workers to verify their nationalities and undertake health
checks at the centers as soon as possible.
The OSS centers have been in operation
across the country for over a week with 10 of the centers in Bangkok alone.
Of the 38,000 migrant workers who have already been to register, 11,964 were
Cambodian workers, 1,581 Laotian and 24,455 were from Myanmar.
There are still 441,299 workers who
must verify their nationality and undergo health checks at the centers to be
permitted to work legally. Of the total, 190,233 are Cambodian, 38,604 are
Laotian and 212,462 are from Myanmar.
Bangkok centers have processed 11,073
workers out of a targeted 158,011 and are hoping to process a maximum of
1,000 workers per day to meet the deadline set for June 30, 2018.
Employers and workers, who have already
registered for the verification process, should check their appointment on
the Department of Employment website www.doe.go.th, its express site at
express.doe.go.th or by calling 02-248-7290.
Department of Employment
Director-General Anurak Tossarat, has urged all foreign laborers to complete
their verification and registration process as soon as possible and told
those who completed initial registration between March 5 and 31, but have
yet to receive a permit, to search for their name at www.doe.go.th. The
permits are necessary to continue the process at OSS centers.
Trang warns of dengue risk following increasing casualties
Trang - Public health officials
in the southern province of Trang have warned the general public about the
spread of dengue fever following an increase in fatality rates this year.
Public health official Banjerd
Sukpipatpanon said this year's mortality rates due to dengue have doubled in
the central and southern regions at 0.25 and 0.26 percent respectively,
although the rainy season has yet to arrive.
Members of the public are encouraged to
eliminate breeding grounds of mosquitoes by tidying up their houses and
ensuring there are no open air containers with water where mosquitoes can
lay their eggs. This will also help prevent the spread of other diseases
such as Zika virus and Chikungunya fever.
Persons exhibiting symptoms of dengue
fever, such as sudden high fever, muscle fatigue, blushing face and red
eyes, rashes under the skin on arms, legs, or joints, should seek medical
attention. More information about the disease is also available by calling
the 1422 hotline service.
Authorities urged to better help beggars, homeless people
Bangkok - Social Development and Human Security
Minister, Gen. Anantaporn Kanjanarat, has encouraged the general public and
tourists to report to the authorities when they come across beggars and
Gen. Anantaporn said the Department of Social
Development and Welfare has launched a campaign for beggars and homeless
people to receive proper assistance and protection from related agencies.
The authorities must provide all needed assistance to beggars and homeless
He said a pilot campaign has been launched in the
resort island of Phuket and is now also being implemented in Samut Prakan
province, as it is one of the key industrial and tourism areas of Thailand.
The general public can call 1300, a 24-hour hotline to
inform officials who will provide assistance and protection to homeless
The campaign is aimed at changing the perspective of
the general public on the correct ways of giving help to the homeless and to
maintain order in society.
Govt to bring forward rice growing season to avoid flood risk
Bangkok – The government has decided to bring
forward this year’s rice growing season by one month to save crops from
Government Spokesperson Lt. Gen. Sansern Kaewkamnerd
disclosed the government would on 1st May start supplying water to 12
retention fields in 10 provinces downstream in the Chao Phraya River basin,
namely Nakhon Sawan, Chainat, Lopburi, Saraburi, Singburi, Ang Thong,
Ayutthaya, Suphanburi, Pathum Thani and Nonthaburi.
Lt. Gen Sansern explained that Prime Minister Prayut
Chan-ocha was particularly concerned about the possibility of untimely
flooding and therefore issued measures advancing the rice planting season
from June to May.
The government expects to store around 1.5 million
cubic meters of water, twice the capacity of Pa Sak Jolasid Dam, to lessen
the impact of flooding on economically important provinces along the banks
of the lower Chao Phraya River, including Bangkok and nearby cities.
Meanwhile, flood embankments will be strengthened to safeguard waterfront
communities and traffic from flood woes.
Wissanu: Amnesty ‘not’ included in Govt’s reconciliation plan
Deputy Prime Minister for Legal Affairs, Wissanu
Bangkok - Deputy Prime
Minister for Legal Affairs Wissanu Krea-ngam has clarified that the
government’s national reconciliation plan does not include the granting
of pardons to those convicted of political offenses.
Commenting on the work of a
government-appointed committee tasked with mapping out a policy
framework for national reform, Wissanu said the reconciliation effort is
making progress despite a slow start, thanks to Deputy Prime Minister
and Defense Minister Gen Prawit Wongsuwan who has been at the forefront
of the reconciliation process.
Wissanu also pleaded with the
public and the media not to make a connection between reconciliation and
amnesty, saying that the former is merely about building peace and unity
in the nation and that the current administration has never talked about
any issues related to amnesty.
He admitted that building unity and
reconciliation is a herculean task because 90% of the work involves
members of the public, and pointed out that such a task would be too
great and too difficult without the help and cooperation of the people.