UBON RATCHATHANI, 8 October 2015  - Ubon Ratchathani province has prepared to tackle next year’s worse drought. Its governor said the province’s main dam might be closed to preserve water. 

BANGKOK, 8 October 2015– The 2015 Vegetarian Festival in Thailand is expected to generate a money circulation of up to 41 billion baht, which is lower than anticipated, according to the University of Thai Chamber of Commerce (UTCC). 

BANGKOK, 8 October 2015 – The Minister of Tourism and Sports has granted financial rewards to athletes and coaches who competed at the international competition.

BANGKOK, 8 October 2015  – Social Development and Human Security Minister Adul Sangsingkaew said the health of many people in southern Thailand has been adversely affected by haze from brushfires on Sumatra Island, Indonesia.

That referred to risk groups of people including children, women, the elderly and the disabled for whom the ministry's officials were instructed to prepare to provide assistance on urgent basis

SATUN, 7 October 2015 – The governor of Satun has advised the public to protect themselves from the dangers of the persisting haze issue, caused from the wildfire in neighbouring Indonesia. 

BANGKOK, 7 October 2015 – The Ministry of Education is planning to develop leading universities in the country into English test centers for job seekers.

Secretary-General of the Higher Education Commission, Ms. Aporn Kaenvong disclosed that the policy-makers were of the opinion that several well-known universities, such as Chulalongkorn and Thammasat, could become English evaluation centers for general students and teachers.

Miss Aporn said Deputy Minister Teerakiat Jareonsettasin was thinking of discussing the idea with the University of Cambridge and leading Thai universities to develop internationally approved English assessment tests. Exam takers can have their English points score recorded in their transcripts or keep the results to themselves.

Miss Aporn explained the policy was expected to encourage students to improve their English through study, and schools to improve their curricula. Meanwhile, employers will also be able to choose suitable persons for their job vacancies.

BURIRAM, 7 October 2015 - A water reservoir in the northeastern province of Buriram is currently being hit by a severe drought in spite of current rainy season which has featured downpours in nearby areas.

The reservoir, namely Huay Jorakhe Mak (literally translating as ''swamp of many crocodiles'') in Tambon Samet of Buriram's provincial district, which would be otherwise considered a watershed, has encountered the critical drought despite the influences of tropical storm Mujigae.

However, Buriram's Provincial Waterworks Authority will finance the planned pumping of about seven million cubic meters of water from a canal in Lam Plai Mat District to fill the reservoir and prevent a shortage of water supply in dry season.

Kitikul Serasiraporn, director of Buriram Irrigation Project, said water levels at 16 reservoirs throughout the northeastern province were somewhat worrisome due to scanty rainfalls so far this year.

If Huay Jorakhe Mak reservoir was not given supplementary water, the reservoir would only be able to supply water until next March. For that reason, local villagers and farmers are asked to use water sparingly and avoid planting crops which might need a lot of water so that water could be saved for possible emergency uses.

BANGKOK, 7 October 2015 – The Metropolitan Police Bureau has pledged to improve the image of police following motorists’ complaints about unscrupulous police.

Acting Metropolitan Police Commissioner Pol Maj Gen Sanit Mahathavorn, announced today that superintendents across the capital city had been told to bar their subordinates from setting up improvised checkpoints to impose fines on drivers.

The order was announced shortly after a group of activists submitted a letter containing 35,000 signatures to the National Police Office, calling for an end to makeshift checkpoints and random fines. The group said motorcycle drivers, most of whom are low wage earners, were the main victims of rogue police.

To improve the image of the police, Pol Maj Gen Sanit disclosed that patrol police would be given the additional task of offering assistance to people. Meanwhile, traffic police have been instructed to give a warning to motorists over minor faults in the first instance instead of imposing fines right away, so as not to worsen conflicts between the public and authorities.

Nevertheless, the acting Metropolitan Police Commissioner confirmed those flouting traffic rules would still face appropriate punitive measures.

Thursday, 08 October 2015 09:42

Cabinet okays new driver’s license fee rate

BANGKOK, 7 October 2015 – The cabinet has approved of a new driver’s license fee rate and an amendment to ministerial regulations to better monitor foreign cars in the country.

Under the new regulations, fees of temporary private motorcycle driver’s license and private three-wheeled cars will be adjusted from 50 baht to 100 baht. Holders of private car driver’s licenses will have to pay 200 baht instead 100 for their license renewal. Meanwhile, license usage period will be extended from one year to two years.

According to Deputy Transport Minister Ormsin Chivapruck, the new system of driver’s license renewal is meant to facilitate drivers as they would not need to extend their license every year. He further explained that the fees actually remained the same considering the doubled renewal period. The new ministerial regulations will come into effect thirty days after they have been published in the government gazette.

Mr. Ormsin also disclosed that the cabinet gave the green light to an amendment in the ministerial regulations regarding the use of vehicles registered overseas in Thailand. In addition to document processing fees of 200-500 baht, owners of such vehicles will be required to pay permission fees between 500 and 2,000 baht each time depending on purposes and vehicle types. The new ministerial regulation is intended to prevent an influx of illegally-imported vehicles and boost the country’s revenue.

BANGKOK, 6 October 2015 - The Royal Irrigation Department (RID) says the four major dams cannot provide enough water for seasonal rice cultivation.

RID Deputy Director General Suthep Noipiroj said his officials need to increase the amount of water in Bhumipol, Sirikit, Kwae Noi Bamrung Dan and Pasakcholasit Dams to 3.5 billion cubic meters. Combined water levels have fallen below the suggested levels of 3.18 billion cubic meters. 

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