Thailand morning news for April 19

Thailand morning news for April  19
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Thailand morning news

After Songkran, Phuket water reductions continue to stretch reserves until rains return
After 270,000 litres of water being used over the Songkran holidays, Phuket’s three main reservoirs are left with 2.82 million cubic metres (m3) of water, which the island’s Irrigation Office chief is adamant will be enough to see residents through until the annual southwest monsoon rains return
–The Phuket News

Songkran road toll down, zero deaths in 4 provinces
There were fewer road accidents, deaths and injuries during the seven-day safety campaign for this year’s Songkran holiday, which closed on Wednesday night.
–Bangkok Post

Future Forward’s Piyabutr given nine days to clarify various allegations
The Technology Crime Suppression Division has given Future Forward Party’s Secretary-General time to submit his statement against charges of contempt of the constitutional court and violation of the Computer Crimes Act, by 25th April.

US man could face death penalty over Thailand ‘sea home’
Chad Elwartowski has gone into hiding with his girlfriend, Supranee Thepdet, after the navy said they had threatened the country’s sovereignty.

420 Forever: Thailand’s 2 Pro-Cannabis Festivals Roll Out This Week
There are not one but two festivals dedicated to cannabis culture happening this year in Thailand — one in Bangkok and another in…
–Coconuts (paywall)

Surachate on holiday in the US
Former Immigration Chief and high-profile crime-buster, Lt Gen Surachate Hakparn, has been laying low since being dramatically sidelined two weeks ago, being demoted to ‘office duties’ at the Police HQ in Bangkok. Now he’s on holiday in America.
–The Thaiger

TRA attacks duty-free ruling
The private sector has slammed the government for giving Airports of Thailand Plc (AoT) latitude in handling the controversial duty-free shop bidding, demanding accountability for a process that would damage the country.
— Bangkok Post

Vietnam and Thailand lead drive to make Southeast Asia cashless
Governments across Southeast Asia are pushing ahead with efforts to create cashless economies, with less developed countries such as Vietnam and Thailand leapfrogging richer ones like Singapore and Malaysia in electronic payments.
— Nikkei Asian Review (paywall)

Thai Senior Monk Gets 26 Years for Money Laundering
A court in Thailand sentenced a senior Buddhist monk to 26 years in prison Thursday after finding him guilty of money laundering when he and another monk embezzled almost U.S. $1 million of government funds that they claimed were earmarked for temples in the Deep South.
— BenarNews

Bangkok roads temporarily closed for procession rehearsal
The Metropolitan Police Bureau (MPB) temporarily closed 40 roads in and around Bangkok’s Rattanakosin Island area earlier today, to make way for a rehearsal of the procession for His Majesty the King’s royal coronation, scheduled for early next month.
— NBT World (video)

BCPG finalises solar roof system plans
BCPG, the renewable power arm of Bangchak Corporation, has completed an agreement with property developer SC Asset to design, install and manage a solar roof system with blockchain technology for local residential projects.
— Bangkok Post

New Economics members seek to disband own party
Three constituency MP candidates of the New Economics Party on Thursday petitioned the Election Commission (EC) to dissolve their own party for being dominated by outsiders who prevented it from freely conducting its activities.
–Bangkok Post

Thailand, Myanmar agree to cooperate
Thailand and Myanmar have signed a collaboration deal to promote tourism routes connecting ancient cities of the two countries in preparation for a travel boom expected from Asean.
— Bangkok Post

Wildfire contained at Phromthep Cape, fire warning re-issued
Firefighters from the Rawai Municipality Fire Department today urged people to beware wildfires and ofbehaviours that may carelessly start a wildfire after a blaze broke out near the tourist-popular Phromthep Cape this afternoon
–The Phuket News

Sacred water moved from Interior Ministry to Suthat Thepphawararam temple
Vases of sacred water for the coronation ceremonies of His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn were transported from the Ministry of the Interior to Suthat Thepphawararam temple for a consecration ceremony today.

Thailand’s tainted Election Commission
Thailand’s 2019 general election is a spectacular disaster. A large number of voters were determined to get to the ballot box in this most expensive election, which costed a total of 5.8 billion baht to administer.
— new mandala

EC dismisses 20 poll fraud cases for insufficient evidence
The Election Commission (EC) has dismissed about 20 cases of alleged election irregularities due to insufficient evidence, said EC deputy secretary-general Sawaeng Boonmee today.
–Thai PBS News

Prime Road Group and First Solar Complete 18MW of Solar Farms in Thailand
Prime Road Group and First Solar, Inc. welcome the completion of four solar farms totaling 18 megawatts (MWDC) of capacity in Thailand.
— eSolar Energy News

Phuket Cops Hunting Down Thai, American ‘Seasteaders’
Police said Thursday that they’re seeking to arrest the two tenants of a seabourne home accused of “posing a threat” to Thai maritime sovereignty.
–Khaosod English

Suspect arrested after British tourist raped on Koh Phi Phi
Deputy police spokesman Krissana Pattanacharoen today (Apr 18) announced the arrest of the man – 23-year-old Trirat Changsanan – on Wednesday on the island, off the coast of Krabi.
— The Phuket News

Australian snorkeller collects trash at Kalim beach everyday
An Australian man has been seen collecting trash in the waters just off Kalim beach in Patong every day over the past month.
–The Thaiger

5,000 vehicles seized from Songkran drivers
Measures to seize vehicles from persons found driving while under the influence of alcohol during the five days of the Songkran holidays resulted in some 5,000 cars and motorcycles being impounded by officials.
–Pattaya Mail

Forest fire in Chiang Rai almost extinguished
Authorities have extinguished most of a forest fire along the border of Muang Chiang Rai and Mae Chan districts in the northern province of Chiang Rai.
–Pattaya Mail

Export prospects top meeting
The Trade Promotion Department is scheduled by the end of this month to speak with the top 10 export-driven manufacturers to evaluate prospects and discuss how to accelerate shipment growth in the second and third quarters — normally the peak period for exports.
–Bangkok Post

Grab pins hopes on new government
Grab Thailand, the local operating unit of the Singapore-based startup, has high hopes a new government will finally legalise the ride-hailing business after years of operating in the country.
–Bangkok Post

Article 270 cannot help with government’s meager majority: DPM Wissanu
Deputy Premier Wissanu Krea-ngam has dismissed calls for the use of Article 270 to have senators cast votes on legislations in joint parliamentary sessions with MPs, and commented that it is only for reform-related legislations.

95% of additional welfare cards distributed
Ninety-five percent of welfare cards have been distributed to those who registered for additional welfare cards under the Thai Niyom Yangyuen Project.

Sand Pagoda Festival highlights Songkran in local communities
The Songkran holiday is celebrated in many communities with residents building sand pagodas at their local temples. The Sand Pagoda Festival has been a religious tradition in the Thai culture for centuries.
–Pattaya Mail

Maya Bay’s extended closure “vital to conserve the ecology”
Worapot Lomlim, chief of the Hat Nopparatthara-Phi-Phi Islands national park has confirmed that he might keep Maya Bay closed for up to five years to allow the current recovery to continue.
–The Thaiger

Hitting the road, getting a leg up on rivals
While online, app-based food deliveries may be relatively new to Thailand, the motorcycle drivers carrying insulated boxes filled with orders and branded with their company logos have become ubiquitous in the country’s urban areas.
–Bangkok Post

Spectrum deal still OK: NBTC
Despite criticism of the regime’s invocation of Section 44 to ease the financial burden of telecom and digital TV operators, the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) says the planned allocation of 700-megahertz spectrum licences for the major three mobile operators in June …
–Bangkok Post

King cobra female caught in Patong, 30 eggs missing from nest
Patong firefighters are concerned that a male king cobra remains at large in a residential area at the northern end of the busy tourism town after catching a female king cobra in Kalim this morning (Apr 18).
–The Phuket News

SBPAC gets Hajj pilgrims ready in Yala
To prepare for the Hajj pilgrimage in Mecca, Saudi Arabia this year, the Southern Border Provinces Administrative Center (SBPAC), Yala Provincial Islamic Committee, and related agencies have held a preparation workshop on the Hajj for pilgrims from southern border provinces.

Total five deaths in Phuket Songkran ‘Seven Day of Danger’ campaign
As reports are tallied for the seventh full day (April 17) of the ‘Seven Days of Danger’ road and marine safety campaign, there were 3 road accidents, including 1 injury and two deaths on the final day.
–The Thaiger

Atta head notes tourism disruption
The rise of the independent traveller over the past decade has disrupted inbound tour operators in Thailand, says a veteran of the industry.
–Bangkok Post

DFT to organize Southern Border Trade Fair
The Department of Foreign Trade (DFT) will organize a Southern Border Trade Fair to provide knowledge to entrepreneurs in preparation for accessing the Malaysian market.


Feature photo JJ Harrison


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. Due to The Nation‘s habit of hijacking urls and diverting them to promotion pages we no longer include it in our clippings.


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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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