THAI spends Bt100 million in Suvarnabhumi Airport move
Thai Airways International Plc. (THAI) will spend around
Bt100 million in moving its operations base from Bangkok International
Airport (Don Muang) to Suvarnabhumi Airport.
Speaking after a meeting last week among concerned agencies to facilitate
the move, Deputy Transport Minister Gen. Chainant Charoensiri said that THAI
would need several thousand truck trips to move its base from Don Muang to
“THAI must transfer all its aeronautical, catering, office and other
equipment to Suvarnabhumi Airport with 3,000 transport trips,” he said,
adding that the move would intensify in the lead up to the new airport’s
official opening in September.
The national flag carrier has hired private companies such as DHL and Total
Logistics, which have expertise in conveyance to help move its facilities,
the deputy minister said. (TNA)
Siam Paragon establishes events arm
Siam Paragon Development Co, operator of Bangkok’s largest
shopping complex, has signalled its intention to grab a bigger slice of the
meetings and events pie with the announcement it has set up a new subsidiary to
handle the lucrative market.
Royal Paragon Enterprise Co will be responsible for organising events and
marketing Siam Paragon as one of the region’s leading shopping destinations.
Siam Paragon Development chairman, Mr Charnchai Charuvastr, said the
400-million-baht (US$10.5 million) Royal Paragon Hall, with a space of 12,000m2
on the fifth floor of the shopping complex, could host exhibitions, trade fairs
and special events.
He said: “We want to create exposure for our venue among incentive tour groups,
because they have high purchasing power. If there is an incentive tour twice a
month at Siam Paragon Hall, spending at Siam Paragon will increase an extra 10
per cent.” (TTG)
Thai-US FTA agreement could hurt SMEs
The privately run Thailand Development Research Institute
(TDRI) has asked the government to be cautious before signing a free trade area
(FTA) agreement with the US that could hurt vulnerable Thai industries,
especially small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
The TDRI warned that the government must weigh the pros and cons of signing the
accord as the potential impact on Thailand’s SMEs in various sectors could be
significant, and although trade and investment would rise for about five years
and the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) would increase by around 1.6-1.8
per cent, Thai businesses would still suffer.
The planned Thai-US FTA agreement would benefit only a few Thai industries,
including automotive production, leather and textiles according to the TDRI.
Dr. Jirawat Panpiemras, a TDRI research specialist in its International Economic
Relations Program, said the kingdom’s pharmaceutical industry would also be
impacted if an FTA agreement between the two countries were signed, as it would
push up medical costs and prevent poor patients from having access to affordable
Thai Embassy in Washington urges speedy Thai-US FTA pact
Thailand should do its utmost to conclude its free trade area
(FTA) negotiations with the US as speedily as possible in order to continue to
enjoy the generalized system of preferences (GSP), which is due to expire at the
end of this year, Thai ambassador to the United States Virasakdi Futrakul said
There are signs that Washington might cut the GSP privileges currently extended
to Brazil, India and Thailand at the end of 2006 and offer them instead to
countries in Africa and South America, citing as the reason that the three
countries are now competitive enough to trade without concessions, Mr. Virasakdi
In terms of GSP value, Thailand - which is among 10 countries receiving GSP
privileges from the US - derives about US$3.6 billion (Bt.137 billion) benefit
from the accord, and the country will have to pay a hefty amount of additional
tariffs if the arrangement ceases.
At current trade levels for example, Thailand would incur 5.5-6.5 per cent or
about US$780 million (Bt.30 billion) in duty on jewellery and ornaments, 2.5-6.5
per cent or about US$180 million (Bt. 6.8 billion) on televisions, 3.2-3.9 per
cent or US$142 million (Bt.5.4 billion) on plastic products, duties for
automotive parts at US$133 million (Bt.5 billion), US$124 million (Bt.4.7
billion) on plastic resins and US$119 million (Bt.4.5 billion) on rubber
Caretaker Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak, acting partly in his
capacity as commerce minister, and business sector delegates who are
accompanying him, plan to raise the GSP issue during talks with American
officials in the US, Ambassador Virasakdi said.
Washington is now negotiating FTA agreements with Malaysia and South Korea and
any delay by Thailand in concluding an accord will only hurt Thailand-US trade,
he said. If an agreement on the FTA is concluded between the kingdom and the US,
Thailand’s trade ranking with the US would move forward to tenth position from
its current 17th ranked place, surpassing Malaysia.
Most importantly, Vietnam is expected to normalize trade with the US by the end
of this year and should it succeed, Hanoi would become a strong competitor in
Dusit Resort announces appointment of new Resident Manager
The General Manager of the Dusit Resort, Chatchawal
Supachayanont, recently announced the appointment of Mr. Marcus Wirsching as
Resident Manager of the five-star, 462-room property in Pattaya. Mr. Wirsching,
a German national, will assist the General Manager in the overall operations of
the hotel and will oversee the implementation of new initiatives being launched
by the Dusit Resort.
Wirsching, the newly appointed Resident Manager of the Dusit Resort, Pattaya.
Mr. Wirsching brings a strong background in operations to his position. Prior to
joining the Dusit Resort, he was the hotel manager of Radisson, SAS Hotel in
Hamburg for two years. His hospitality career spans 18 years including four
years with Radisson SAS Hotels in Germany, Scotland, and Poland, two years with
Hilton in Sri Lanka; as well as other international chain hotels in Thailand and
overseas. Wirsching is relocating to Pattaya from Hamburg with his wife Dulika.
Wirsching’s excellent background in F&B operations and Banqueting will further
establish Dusit Resort’s strong foothold as one of Pattaya’s prime venues in
MICE business. Dusit Resort, Pattaya has meeting and banquet facilities that can
accommodate from as few as five and up to convention-size 2,500 people, complete
with world-class accommodation, full catering and professional technical
World giant automaker still upbeat about market growth in Thailand
Ford Motor Co. Ltd, one of the world’s largest
automakers, insists it is ready to increase investment in Thailand as the
company still retains confidence in the automobile market in the country.
Tom Brewer, Chairman of Ford (Thailand) Co., said in a statement last
Wednesday that although there is a common view that the Thai economy is
slowing down, the company holds no fears of investing in the future of the
automobile industry in Thailand.
After previously investing 40 billion baht in Thailand, Mr. Brewer said that
Ford wants to expand its business in Asia and sees Thailand as the hub of
one-ton truck production in the region. The company plans to establish a
representative office for both the Asia-Pacific and African regions in
Ford has continuously worked to improve and increase the production capacity
of its plant in Thailand and it is projected that its annual capacity will
rise to 200,000 units by 2008.
The company also plans to increase the network of product and service
Mr. Brewer said the firm views the Asian markets as a key driving force for
the Ford Motor Company’s move towards the 21st century.
He also called on the Thai government to have a clearer policy on
alternative energy. In the past, he said, the government had steered policy
towards encouraging the production of natural gas for vehicles (NGV),
ethanol and bio-diesel. Now, with the political upheaval, the firm remains
uncertain which state agencies are in charge of overseeing the alternative
energy drive and this is causing concern amongst strategists in the
automobile industry. (TNA)