Thailand morning news for April 1

Thailand morning news for April  1

Thailand morning newsFlights diverted as Chiang Mai haze reaches critical level
Chiang Mai has been enshrouded in a cloud of ultrafine PM2.5 dust at levels far exceeding safety standards, plunging the tourist province into a crisis.
— Bangkok Post

Forest fire causes smog in Phayao
Phayao province is blanketed with smog caused by forest fires, as villagers have to wear masks to protect themselves from air pollution.

Provinces battling water scarcity
Various provinces are coming up with ways to mitigate drought as water trucks are being deployed to non-irrigated communities.
— NBT World (video)

Thai king strips fugitive ex-PM Thaksin of royal decorations
Thailand’s king has stripped fugitive former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra of his royal decorations, citing his 2008 flight to escape serving a two-year prison term on a conflict of interest conviction and other legal cases against him.
— AP

SRT ramps up efforts to lease its land
The debt-ridden State Railway of Thailand (SRT) is ramping up efforts to lease its three prime land plots in Bangkok to be used for a 400 billion-baht commercial development project in a bid to bolster…
— Bangkok Post

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PM calls for unity among Thais
The Prime Minister has sent a message to political parties and all Thai citizens, reminding them that the purpose of forming a coalition government is to unite together to do good deeds for the Kingdom and its people while preventing ill-intentioned individuals from doing harm.
— NBT World (video)

EC: No tampering with poll results
The Election Commission of Thailand (EC) said it did not tamper with poll results, confirming that Thursday’s announcement of vote count did not change constituency election outcomes.

Chiang Mai to suffer haze and smoke problems until at least May
Thailand’s northern provinces, including Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai, are likely to face health-threatening haze problems from PM2.5 dust particles until at least early May.
— The Thaiger

PM to fly to Chiang Mai on Tuesday to discuss haze problem
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha will fly to the northern province of Chiang Mai on Tuesday morning to chair a meeting of upper northern provincial governors to discuss the haze problem which is wreaking havoc in several provinces.
— Thai PBS World

A Snapshot of the Thai Vote Count
This chart summarizes voting results released by the Election Commission on Thursday accounting for 100 percent of votes cast in the March 24 parliamentary election.
— Benar News

UK Kings mystery of Thai ‘Lady of the Hills’
The discovery of an unidentified woman’s body on an English hillside more than a decade ago sparked a mystery still as yet unsolved.
— Bangkok Post

Thai rice exports facing strong regional competition
Rice exports are down in February’s sales figures, in both total volume and value. High prices and competition from Vietnam are being blamed, along with the ongoing strong baht.
— The Thaiger

Kingsgate prepares for legal challenge to mine closure
The Australian mining company Kingsgate Consolidated, armed with a US$55-million insurance payout for the closure of its gold mine in Thailand, says it now has the financial means to pursue its arbitration case against the Thai government.
— Bangkok Post

Pro-army party prioritises Thai king’s coronation over forming government
A party linked to Thailand’s ruling military junta said it will not hold talks to try to form the next government until after the coronation of King Maha Vajiralongkorn in May, with the outcome of last Sunday’s election still hanging in the balance.
— Reuters

Is the EEC’s future hanging in a balance?
The future of the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) could hang in a balance as it remains uncertain which parties will form the new government.
— Thai PBS World

Buriram villager killed by rampaging wild elephant
by Surachai Piraksa A 37 year old man from a village in Buriram province has been stomped to death by a wild elephant early today in Tambon Lam Nang Rong.
— The Thaiger

AOT board agrees to split airport duty-free concession
The board of the Airports of Thailand Company (AOT) has decided to split the concession to operate airport duty-free shops into two contracts – one for Suvarnabhumi and the other for Phuket, Chiang Mai and Hat Yai international airports.
— Thai PBS World

Wildfire engulfs 14 rai of forest in north
A wildfire raged through 14 rai of a Nan forest as fighter fighters from the municipality and the Pha Mueang Task Force were seen spraying water and keeping flames under control.

Polystyrene containers ditched by Southern province
You would expect the Capital to lead the way. But this time it’s one of Thailand’s southern provinces showing the way forward with one of Thailand’s biggest disposable waste problems.
— The Thaiger

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No passport required: Phuket Immigration confirms ‘passport on person’ not required despite ‘Operation X-Ray Outlaw Foreigner’
Phuket Immigration has confirmed there is no need for foreigners to carry their passports at all times, despite the ongoing ‘Operation X-Ray Outlaw Foreigner’ crackdown on illegal foreigners netting 300 foreigners in Phuket last month alone.immigrationtourism
— The Phuket News

German tourist beaten over Chiang Mai karaoke bar bill
A German tourist in Chiang Mai has filed an official complaint with police, claiming he was assaulted by staff at an allegedly over-priced karaoke bar.
— The Thaiger

Thai Election Commission blames software for counting errors
Thailand’s Election Commission said that computer software was partly to blame for inconsistent and delayed vote totals from last Sunday’s general election.
— AP

Most people ‘satisfied’ with election results: Nida Poll
A majority of people are satisfied with both the outcome and the conduct of the March 24 election results, according to the result an opinion survey by the National Institute of Development Administration, or Nida Poll.
— Bangkok Post

Most people worried by alleged election fraud: Suan Dusit Poll
A majority of people say they are not happy with alleged fraud and unclear voting results in the March 24 election, according to the result of an opinion survey by the Suan Dusit Rajabhat University, or…
— Bangkok Post

“Easier, faster and more watertight” – Surachate’s vision for Immigration
Lt Gen Surachate Hakparn, Thailand’s Immigration chief, has outlined a few new directions for visitor and expat visas in Thailand.
— The Thaiger

Cooperation vital to end haze crisis
More than a decade after fine dust particles known as PM2.5 emerged as a health threat in Chiang Mai, the province has started to embrace a new approach that opens the doors to cooperation between state…
— Bangkok Post

Northern University Cancels Classes Due to Smog
A university in Chiang Rai province said its students will be dismissed for two days as air pollution continues to swell in the north.
— Khaosod English

Provinces battling water scarcity
Various provinces are coming up with ways to mitigate drought as water trucks are being deployed to non-irrigated communities.

Bids to oust EC chiefs gain pace
Campaigns calling for the ousting of the poll commissioners have gathered momentum in the wake of reports of alleged irregularities in the March 24 general election.
— Bangkok Post

Police return assets to debtors exploited by loan sharks
The Metropolitan Police Bureau organized a handover ceremony, in which assets involved in loan shark cases were returned back to their original owners.
— Pattaya Mail

Phuket ranked sixth Best Destination in the World – Trip Advisor
Patong Beach. Phuket was the only Thai destination in the 2019 list of the World’s Best Destinations Last year’s royal wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle has put the Brexit-obsessed London on top of a list of the World’s Best Destinations in the …
— The Thaiger

Thai Fashion Takeover: Recapping Bangkok International Fashion Week Fresh Off the Runway (BIFW2019)
Bangkok International Fashion Week (BIFW2019) has come round in full swing — with exclusive shows (tickets please!) in various high fashion zones across OneSiam.
— Coconuts (paywall)

Bank of Thailand upbeat about key growth drivers
Although the private sector is increasingly concerned that the murky election result could stall economic momentum, the Bank of Thailand remains optimistic that domestic investment and consumption — two…
— Bangkok Post

Rangers free 6 trapped baby elephants in Thailand
Six baby elephants, trapped in a mud hole and separated from their parents, have been rescued by a team of park rangers in northeastern Thailand.
— AP

Sony moves smartphone production from China to Thailand to halve costs
Japanese electronics giant Sony is closing its Beijing smartphone plant and will shift production to Thailand in a move to cut costs in its unprofitable phone business, Reuters cited a company spokesman.
— Investvine

Bangkok Motor Show opens as Thai car sales move online
New Nissan all-electric LEAF, on display at the Bangkok Motor Show by Kingsley Wijayasinha “Despite the increase in sales online, including new automobiles, we’re not worried that fewer people will show up at the event to purchase vehicles.” More than 1.6 million visitors …
— The Thaiger

Thai Officials nab 15 Japanese Nationals in Chonburi in alleged call center scam, no work permits
Pattaya- Just after Midnight this morning, March 30th, 2019, “Big Joke” Surachate Hakparn personally led a raid on a call center of Japanese Nationals in Chonburi located in Siam Royal Village with a search warrant from Pattaya District Court.
— The Pattaya News


Feature photo @richardjarogers


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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