Thailand Morning News For March 5

Thailand Morning News For March 5
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Thailand morning newsThailand dreams of 100 smart cities
As a part of its Thailand 4.0 initiative – a plan to transform Thailand’s economy into a digitally powered ecosystem – the country has set itself the target of creating no less than 100 smart cities within its borders over the next two decades.
— Investvine

Jan exports set record high in half decade
The value of Thai exports in the first month of 2018 surged by 17.6%, the highest in 5 years and 2 months.
— News Today (video)

Government’s rating increases while PM’s popularity drops: Bangkok Poll
More people are satisfied with the government’s performance in the past three and a half years, but they are less satisfied with Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha’s performance, according to Bangkok Poll.
— Thai PBS

SEC supervision of ICOs considered
The Finance Ministry is considering the appointment of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to supervise fund-raising involving initial coin offerings (ICOs) and digital assets.
— Bangkok Post

Thailand to establish rice mills in Nigeria – Minister
The Federal Government on Sunday announced that Thailand had commenced moves to establish rice mills in Nigeria.
— Punch

BMA: Bangkok flood tunnel close to completion
The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) says its flood prevention tunnel project is close to completion and will be ready for a final simulated test run next month.

Universities slow to adapt to job change
Universities need to transform their curricula to equip students for the job market of the future, where many of today’s jobs will no longer be needed, says the Council of University Presidents of Thailand (CUPT) president Suchatvee Suwansawat.
— Bangkok Post

Over 70 percent agree with next February as the right timing for election: Nida Poll
More than 70 percent of the respondents to an opinion poll said next February would be the right timing for an election against 20.40 percent who disagreed, according to Nida Poll of the National Institute of Development Administration.
— Thai PBS

Thailand’s refusal to recognise Rohingya |as refugees leaves them in illegal limbo
ROHINGYA in Myanmar, Bangladesh, Malaysia and Indonesia often experience their own problems, but in Thailand, members of the ethnic minority face extra difficulties because they are not recognised and categorised incorrectly.
— The Nation

Commerce Ministry confirms commitment to stabilizing crop prices
The Ministry of Commerce is committed to uplifting the agricultural community and stabilizing prices of domestic crops.
— News Today (video)

Labor Minister: No extension of deadline for foreign worker registration beyond June 30
The Labor Minister has announced that the deadline for foreign worker registration will not be postponed from its original schedule.

‘Men of discipline?’ Police banned from wearing sunglasses following haircut order as force gets an image makeover
POLICE OFFICERS have been banned from wearing sunglasses while performing their duties because such accessories are deemed inappropriate, according to Pol Maj-General Panurat Lakboon, deputy commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Bureau (MPB).
— The Nation

Tobacco Monopoly feels the burn from new excise rates
The state-run Thailand Tobacco Monopoly (TTM) is expecting the first loss, of about 1.5 billion baht, in its 79-year history, following new excise tax rates which it claims have benefitted importers of foreign cigarettes.
— Bangkok Post

Government agencies told to beef up holiday accident prevention
The government has instructed relevant agencies to strengthen road accident prevention and reduction measures in time for the Songkran holiday.
— News Today (video)

Chaos in TOT-CAT overhaul attempt
The creation of two new companies from TOT Plc and CAT Telecom is creating havoc in the operations of the two state enterprises’ management.
— Bangkok Post

Banks race for digital technology
BANKS IN VIETNAM and Thailand are racing to adopt digital banking technology in order to enhance their services in the age of the smartphone.
— The Nation

‘Riviera Thailand’ planned for Gulf beach strip
The government plans to unveil a high-end tourism campaign in the coastal western provinces, which it said would help boost the income of locals in the region.
— Bangkok Post

Illegal transnational work providing gang member arrested
A gang providing illegal transnational work deceiving Thai workers with a claim of providing the work of cultivating cannabis in the US has been arrested.
— News Today (video)

Anti-drug agency auctions off confiscated items
High-end vehicles were among 395 items on offer in the latest auction held by the Office of the Narcotics Control Board (ONCB).

Krabi Airport Director is waiting for engineer’s report tomorrow
The Krabi airport management has a team of engineers coming to the airport tomorrow to come up with a schedule to repair the runway where damage has been caused at either end of the landing strip.
— Phuket Gazette

Breaking free of bureaucracy
The idea of having an independent tax body to enhance tax collection efficiency has been floated in Thailand in a bid to break away from the ineptitude of the existing bureaucratic red tape.
— Bangkok Post

Singha Estate enters B11bn deal to buy Outrigger hotels, including Outrigger Phuket
Thai-listed group Singha Estate has entered into an agreement to purchase the 255-room Outrigger Laguna Phuket Beach Resort through affiliated entities, reports Bill Barnett of consultancy C9 Hotelworks.
— The Phuket News

Thai Department of Disease Control warns against Vaping…again
In recent months the Thai crackdown on vaping or e-cigarettes has continued. We have written previously how tourists are being routinely fined 20,000 baht and up for vaping in public and how there are public announcements and signs at Passport Control in Bangkok informing tourists that vaping is not legal in Thailand.
— The Pattaya News

Co-working space opens for textiles
Touch Printing Republic Co, an on-demand printing service firm, has started a co-working space for textile designers and plans to launch a design-to-print online marketplace platform.
— Bangkok Post

Illegal piers for Chinese, Russian tourists found in protected mangroves north of Phuket
Officials are getting ready to file a complaint against those responsible for building and operating illegal piers encroaching on protected mangroves in Phang Nga’s Thai Mueang district.
— The Phuket News

Building bridges between Laos and Thailand for better lives
Laos overcomes its land-locked geography with overland cross-border infrastructure, boosting interconnectivity between countries in Southeast Asia.
— Channel NewsAsia (video)

Chiang Mai smart bus service underway
The Chiang Mai Smart Bus service by Regional Transit Corporation (RTC) has been operating on a trial basis from March 1st to 7th, 2018, with free rides for commuters from March 6th-7th, 2018.

Pattaya City Authorities release graphic warning video on driving motorbikes in Pattaya to tourists
This video, released earlier this week by Pattaya City Authorities using CC cameras throughout the city, show in graphic detail the dangers of driving a motorbike in Pattaya. Authorities state it is designed to warn tourists away from driving in the resort and renting motorbikes.
— The Pattaya News


Feature photo Patrik M. Loeff


Find our previous morning news feature photos in the AEC News Today Morning News Feature Photos gallery where you will find a pictorial display of daily life throughout the Asean Economic Community (AEC).

Thailand morning news by AEC News Today is your one stop source for Thailand news on matters of governance and policies affecting Asean business communities. It is published M-F by AEC News Today: Governance, not government; policies not politics.


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John Le Fevre

Thailand editor at AEC News Today

John is an Australian national with more than 40 years experience as a journalist, photographer, videographer, and copy editor.

He has spent extensive periods of time working in Africa and throughout Southeast Asia, with stints in the Middle East, the USA, and England.

He has covered major world events including Operation Desert Shield/ Storm, the 1991 pillage in Zaire, the 1994 Rwanda genocide, the 1999 East Timor independence unrest, the 2004 Asian tsunami, and the 2009, 2010, and 2014 Bangkok political protests.

In 1995 he was a Walkley Award finalist, the highest awards in Australian journalism, for his coverage of the 1995 Zaire (now Democratic Republic of Congo) Ebola outbreak.

Prior to AEC News Today he was the deputy editor and Thailand and Greater Mekong Sub-region editor for The Establishment Post, predecessor of Asean Today.

In the mid-80s and early 90s he owned JLF Promotions, the largest above and below the line marketing and PR firm servicing the high-technology industry in Australia. It was sold in 1995.

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