Thailand morning news for December 19

Thailand morning news for December 19
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Thailand morning news

BoI upgrades EEC perks to garner HR outlays
The Board of Investment (BoI) agreed on Wednesday to upgrade investment privileges for projects in the government’s flagship Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) to make them more enticing and promote human resource development.
— Bangkok Post

Thai army ‘regrets’ killing three Muslim civilians in south
The Thai army has expressed regret after troops shot dead three Muslim men foraging in the jungle this week and promised a probe, a rare admission of wrongdoing by the military in Thailand’s insurgency-scarred south.

BoT slashes GDP view on export woes
The Bank of Thailand left the policy rate unchanged at a record low but offered a grim outlook by cutting forecasts for economic growth to 2.5% for this year and 2.8% the next as the US-China trade spat continues to hurt exports.
— Bangkok Post

Safety Concerns Raised Over Thailand’s Cash-Strapped Airlines
Thailand’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAAT) reports its closely watching airlines safety aspects, as many are facing serious financial troubles this year.
— Chiang Rai Times

Thai Industries Sentiment Index rises for first time in six months
The Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) on Wednesday said in a media conference that the Thai Industries Sentiment Index rose for the first time in six months in November thanks to accelerated production before the New Year holiday.
— Xinhuanet

One cuffed as FFP hit by fallout over rally
The Digital Economy and Society Ministry has announced that one person has been arrested over a derogatory reference to the monarchy made during an anti-government protest last weekend.
— Bangkok Post

Prayut says he’s not fretting at censure move
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha insisted he is free of worries about the no-confidence motion the opposition is filing against the government, which he said remains firmly united.
— Bangkok Post

Drought declared across 11 provinces
Thailand is facing a drought after emergency measures were ordered in 54 districts in 11 provinces, according to the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation.
— Reliefweb

FM Don backs push for multilateralism
Thailand has joined the 52 other members of the Asia-Europe Meeting (Asem) in stressing the need to revitalise multilateralism amid ongoing challenges to the world order.
— Bangkok Post

Pollution Control Department indicates better air quality in BKK area
According to the Pollution Control Department, the air quality has improved in Bangkok and neighbouring provinces this morning, with the PM 2.5 airborne dust levels well below the standard limit of 50 micrograms per cubic meter in most areas.
— Newsline (video)

2020 budget poised to sail through House
The fiscal 2020 budget bill is expected to receive parliamentary approval early next year as the coalition government has sufficient votes from lawmakers to pass the bill, says Kobsak Pootrakool, the Prime Minister’s Office Minister.
— Bangkok Post

Thousands of migrants workers deported from Thailand: Official
A deputy provincial governor for Banteay Meanchey yesterday reported Thailand has so far this year deported 9,979 undocumented migrant workers through Poipet city.
— Khmer Times

Tesco bidders told to get permission
The Office of Trade Competition Commission (OTCC) has warned large retail companies against violating anti-monopoly laws after Britain’s biggest supermarket chain, Tesco, announced this month it is considering selling its remaining Asian businesses in Thailand and Malaysia.
— Bangkok Post

Parole board under fire
A fresh murder case in which paroled serial killer Somkid Pumpuang is the prime suspect has prompted Justice Minister Somsak Thepsutin to urgently order the formation of a special committee tasked with monitoring prisoners and former prisoners involved in serious cases.
— Bangkok Post

Loan rejection continues to dent car sales
Car sales during January to November fell 1.1% year-on-year to 918,267 units after monthly sales decreased six months in a row, according to the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI).
— Bangkok Post

Ministry taps state banks to boost rural economy
The Finance Ministry plans to prioritise strengthening the rural economy and accelerate infrastructure investments in 2020 as a means to cushion against external headwinds.
— Bangkok Post

Cannabis use increases after legalisation
The number of illegal drug users rose by 130,000 this year after Thailand legalised cannabis for medical purposes, the Office of the Narcotics Control Board (ONCB) said.
— Bangkok Post

Thailand holds key rate, cuts economic forecasts as exports stumble
Thailand’s central bank left its benchmark interest rate unchanged at a record low on Wednesday, while it cut its growth forecasts for this year and next as exports take a hit from the Sino-U. S. trade war and a strong baht.
— Nikkei Asian Review (paywall)

Farmers say ‘holes’ in toxins study reason to cancel ban
A network of farmers has pledged that it will file a petition with the Office of the National Anti-Corruption Commission against the Ministry of Public Health next month accusing it of using unreliable sources of information in its proposal to ban three toxic farm chemicals.
— Bangkok Post

Drought drains rivers in central region
Severe drought has hit the central region provinces of Nakhon Sawan, Uthai Thani, Chai Nat, where river levels are dropping and riverbanks are in danger of collapsing.
— Bangkok Post

Pheu Thai takes aim
The opposition Pheu Thai Party will table a no-confidence motion against the government in parliament next month, with four cabinet ministers in the cross-hairs, Pheu Thai heavyweight Chalerm Ubumrung announced on Tuesday.
— Bangkok Post

Myanmar seeks migrant-worker protections in Malaysia and Thailand
The government is negotiating with Malaysia and Thailand to ensure that hundreds of thousands of Myanmar nationals working in their countries will have access to social welfare benefits, a senior minister said.
— Myanmar Times

MI: Internet spending poised to outpace TV in 2-3 years
Ad spending on the internet is likely to exceed TV spending within three years as digital disruption takes a toll on TV viewership, says Media Intelligence (MI), a creative media specialist.
— Bangkok Post

GHB unveils campaign to reward clients with good repayment history
The Government Housing Bank (GHB) has launched a campaign offering 1,000 baht rewards for 170,000 customers who maintain good repayment discipline.
— Newsline (video)

Ageing Thai tourism industry due for a check-up, says industry veteran
As Thailand’s tourism industry gears up to mark its 60th anniversary in 2020, it is an ageing sector in need of a few nips and tucks for its own long-term interest, cautioned industry veteran Imtiaz Muqbil.
— TTG Asia

TAT chief promotes 2nd-tier countdowns
The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is set to host Amazing Thailand Countdown 2020 in emerging destinations and co-host several countdown events in big cities, aiming to generate 23.8 billion baht in tourism income during the holidays.
— Bangkok Post

Thailand’s CP Group bets $4.1bn on project to take crown from TCC
Thailand’s largest conglomerate Charoen Pokphand Group and big business rival TCC Group have evolved from their roots in the food and beverages industry, with the two now vying over respective property developments they both hope will be the kingdom’s largest.
— Nikkei Asian Review (paywall)

SEC urged to use new technologies to support capital market
Deputy Secretary-General to the Prime Minister Dr. Kobsak Pootrakool has commented that several pieces of legislation should be amended to support investment and enhance the capital market’s potential.
— Newsline (video)

Thailand Wants More First-Time Visitors as They Spend More
Thailand will try to ease the pressure on tourism from a surging currency by targeting more first-time visitors because they are bigger spenders.
— Bloomberg

Thailand: End Crackdown on Future Forward Party
Thai authorities should immediately drop all politically motivated charges against opposition leaders and pro-democracy activists who held peaceful rallies in Bangkok and other Thai provinces, Human Rights Watch said today.
— Human Rights Watch

FTAs make Thailand world’s 6th biggest exporter of fruits: Thai Commerce Ministry
The Thai Ministry of Commerce on Wednesday said in a media brief that Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) that Thailand has signed with others countries have made the country the world’s 6th biggest exporter of fruits.
— Xinhuanet

Land and building tax collection postponed until August 2020
After the government approved new regulations under the Land and Building Tax Act, due to take effect on January 1, the Ministry of the Interior announced that actual tax collection will commence in August 2020, rather than the previous schedule of April 2020.
— Thailand Business News

Thai coal major Banpu buys US shale gas assets for $770m
Thai coal company Banpu will purchase shale assets in the U.S. state of Texas for $770 million under a deal announced Wednesday, more than tripling its natural gas output amid growing investor pressure for cleaner fuels.
— Nikkei Asian Review (paywall)

Police Chief Summoned Over Protest Ban in Bangkok
Thailand’s House standing committee has summoned National police chief Chaktip Chaijinda after activists behind a planned anti-government run were allegedly barred from gathering at a Bangkok hotel.
— Chiang Rai Times

Thailand cave hero says Elon Musk defamation defeat has made him feel ‘humiliated, dirtied and ashamed’ in first interview since losing case
ABritish man who heroically helped save 12 Thai children from drowning fought back tears as he said Elon Musk’s “pedo guy” comment left him “humiliated, dirtied and ashamed” in his first interview since losing the case.

Stagflation is now a reality for Thailand
I first encountered this word, a combination of “stagnation” and “inflation”, in an economics textbook.
— Bangkok Post

Committee agrees to end online shopping exemption
A tax reform committee has agreed to revoke the value-added tax (VAT) exemption for online purchases of goods worth up to 1,500 baht from vendors outside of Thailand that are shipped by mail, aiming to provide a level playing field with local operators.
— Bangkok Post

Families of 3 slain men to file charges against soldiers
The families of three men shot dead “by mistake” by security forces in Ra-ngae district on Monday are seeking help in filing charges against the soldiers who killed their loved ones.
— Bangkok Post

Market sounding held on Nakhon Pathom Airport construction project
The Department of Airports has held a market sounding seminar on the government’s plan to construct a new airport in Nakhon Pathom with potential co-investors prior to expected construction in 2023.
— Newsline (video)

Irrigation Officials Warn of Extremely Low Water Reserves
The Royal Irrigation Office has warned of extremely low water reserves water at major dams in Northeastern Thailand.
— Chiang Rai Times

Debt steady from weak housing sales
Thailand’s household debt in the second half this year has slowed from the first half thanks to weak housing demand, excess supply in the property market and tighter lending from financial institutions.
— Bangkok Post

Moody’s affirms Bangkok Bank’s ratings on Bank Permata takeover
Moody’s Investors Service has today affirmed the Baa1 foreign currency long-term bank deposit ratings of Bangkok Bank Public Company Limited’s (BBL) with a positive outlook.
— Thailand Business News

Educating children with special needs: the inclusive approach
Following our article published in this series on 18 November entitled “Early Childhood Learning: It’s never too soon to start”, we asked Rose Marie Wanchupela and Khun Wanchai Chaiyasit to comment on their activities to help young children with learning difficulties, a field in which they have well-renowned expertise.
— Bangkok Post

Cabinet acknowledges New Year’s gifts of various ministries
The Cabinet this week acknowledged several measures proposed by the Ministry of Defense and the Ministry of Culture, which are intended to be New Year’s gifts for the Thai people.
— Newsline (video)

Police increases public transport security measures for holidays
The national police are to ensure the safety of travellers over the holiday period by enforcing strict security measures at bus stations and airports and offering a house patrol program from 24 December to 2 January.
— Pattaya Mail

Thailand gunning for top spot at Philippines 2020
More than 1,500 athletes from 11 member countries will participate in the 10th edition of the Asean Para Games to be held in the Philippines next month, organisers said on Tuesday.
— Bangkok Post

Non profit Organization celebrates 88 year old novelist
Amata Foundation, a non-profit organization and an avid supporter of Thai education, the environment and culture, has resolved to award an 88 year old novelist for her profound literary work.
— Newsline (video)

VIDEO – Plant breeding, methane capture, and underplanting: Univanich on sustainable palm oil practices in Thailand
General manager of Univanich Palm Oil PLC Harry Brock talks sustainable palm oil production in Krabi, Thailand, covering plant breeding, methane capture, and underplanting.

Khaosan Walking Street welcomes visitors with delicacies and entertainment activities
The Bangkok Governor has officiated the Khaosan Walking Street event — which is being held in concurrent with the other two walking street campaigns in Si Lom and Yaowarat –, aiming to boost the local economy and tourism scene.
— Newsline (video)

Muang Sook Siam celebrates 1st anniversary as a Thailand-showcase lifestyle sensation
Muang Sook Siam has revealed itself as a window-to-the-world for Thai lifestyles, as it announces its first-year success as a key attraction for Iconsiam – Thailand’s new international shopping landmark.
— Bangkok Post

Thailand reveals 10 unhealthy behaviour trends next year
The Thai Health Promotion Foundation will be keeping its eye on 10 worrying and unhealthy behaviours among Thais next year, particularly those related to social media.
— Vietnamplus

Outlook on Thailand’s $21.14Bn Mobile Retail Shopping Market: Retail Spend Analysis, Consumer Attitude & Behaviour
The “Thailand Mobile Retail Shopping Business and Investment Opportunities (Databook Series) – Market Size and Forecast, Retail Spend Analysis, and Consumer Attitude & Behaviour” report has been added to’s offering.
— Yahoo Finance

Ministry of Culture and Ministry of Defence announce New Year’s gifts for the public
A meeting of cabinet ministers has acknowledged that New Year’s gifts are intended to increase the Thai people’s happiness, as proposed by the Ministry of Defense and the Ministry of Culture.
— The Pattaya News

House budget panel agrees to restore 8 billion baht in research funding
The House committee’s about-turn followed a complaint from the office saying that the substantial cutback in the research funding would seriously affect research by about 250 universities and other research…
— Thai PBS News

Mazda allocates 1b baht to upgrade AutoAlliance Thailand plant – BT-50 production moving to Isuzu
Mazda plans to allocate around one billion baht (RM137.1 million) to upgrade its factory in Thailand next year, reports the Bangkok Post.

Thailand’s U-turn on agri-chemical ban shows US hitting where it hurts
The US is piling the pressure on Thailand over its agri-chemical ban, and it appears to be working.
— The Thaiger

Pollution Control Department launches ‘No Car Wednesday’ initiative
Thailand’s Pollution Control Department’s initiative, to urge its officials to use public transport instead of their own cars every Wednesday, kicked off today.
— Thai PBS News

15 year old Buriram girl forced to sell drugs for her boyfriend
Police in Buriram north east Thailand, have rescued a 15 year old girl and arrested her 33 year old boyfriend after he threatened her with a gun to deliver drugs for his gang.
— The Thaiger

Wanted Thai serial killer re-arrested after early release
Thai police arrested a convicted serial killer Wednesday in connection with another murder after his early release from jail for good behaviour, authorities confirmed.

2019 Bangkok property review and forecasts for 2020 – CBRE
A supply influx of new office space is on the way while the overall retail industry faces low consumer confidence.
— The Thaiger

Thailand’s Central Bank lowers growth forecast, leaves interest rate unchanged
Thailand’s central bank left its benchmark interest rate unchanged at a record low on Wednesday, while it cut its growth forecasts for this year and next as exports take a hit from the Sino-U.S. trade war and a strong baht.
— The Pattaya News

Student, 13, shot dead in school by former friend in Nonthaburi after alleged bullying
A 13 year old student in Nonthaburi has been shot dead by his former friend in school this morning. Rescue workers rushed to the school to find the 13 year old boy bleeding heavily on the floor in the building.
— The Pattaya News

Seripisut says expulsion of 4 rebel MPs a gain for the Government
The expulsion of four rebel MPs from the Future Forward party will only serve to weaken the Opposition in the House of Representatives, while strengthening the Government, because the rebels are likely to defect to the Government camp, Seri Ruam Thai party leader Seripisut Temiyavet said today (Wednesday).
— Thai PBS News

Search continues for American man who fled police custody still in handcuffs in Phuket-Video
Chalong Police today issued a wanted poster for 28-year-old Florida man Ezekiel Shilon Dolcide, who escaped police custody by running away while still handcuffed on Monday afternoon (Dec 16).
— The Pattaya News

Thai police make arrest over ‘inappropriate’ Facebook rally photo
Thai police arrested a suspect behind an inappropriate photo posted on Facebook from an anti-government rally, a minister said Wednesday, as the offending image went viral days after the largest protest since March’s elections.

FFP rally may have broken the law, activist demands investigation
Thailand’s “complainer-in-chief”, lawyer and fan-boy for the current government, Srisuwan Janya, says he will ask the Election Commission to investigate if the Future Forward Party broke the law on political parties by holding a political rally in central Bangkok last Saturday.
— The Thaiger

Foreigners record higher transfer of condo units
Despite the stronger baht, foreigners recorded a higher transfer of condo units nationwide in the first nine months this year.
— Bangkok Post property

The man helping to make Southern Thai food the nation’s hottest cuisine
He may have spent his university years in Boston and much of his working career in Bangkok, but Supaksorn “Ice” Jongsiri can’t stop talking about Southern Thailand.
— cna luxury

Fugitive ‘serial killer’ Somkid arrested on Bangkok-bound train
Police have arrested the convicted killer Somkid Poompuang, who has been nick-named in Thai media as “Jack the Ripper” and “Kid the Ripper” this morning.
— The Thaiger

Doctor in southern Thailand issues warning after manicure goes VERY wrong
A doctor at a hospital in the southern province of Nakhon Si Thammarat is warning women to exercise caution when choosing a nail salon and to ensure the facility follows correct sanitation procedures and only uses properly sterilised equipment.
— The Thaiger

Rescue workers find women sitting with 10 day old corpse, waiting for dead man to come back to life
After local residents complained of the smell coming from a house in Nakhon Nayok, north east of Bangkok, a medical rescue team was sent to the property only to find a rather sad situation.
— The Thaiger


Feature photo John Le Fevre

This week’s Thailand morning news feature photo focuses on International Migrants Day, December 18.


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).



About Thailand morning news.

Thailand morning news roundup is the most comprehensive hand-curated selection of Thailand English language news headlines published. Each weekday we scour hundreds of local and international news sites and websites to find the most recent Thailand English language news today.

We filter our the dull, the boring, the repetitive, and the click-bait and package all of the Thailand daily news that you need to know to start your day into an easy to read, time saving format of Thailand news headlines and first paragraphs before 7.15am Bangkok time.

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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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