BANGKOK, 4 April 2015 - A poll has revealed that 59.4 percent of respondents favor a Prime Minister who is an elected member of Parliament as he or she would be a representative of the people.

The National Institute of Development Administration, a body that conducts various high-profile polls also known as “NIDA Polls,” deduced from its latest sampling of 1,261 respondents that 59.4 percent place their confidence in an elected representative to assume the premiership, as the member chosen would have been elected by the populace.

However, 36.64 percent were of the opinion that the public should directly elect the Prime Minister as political parties can influence votes within Parliament.

When asked if respondents agree to a non-MP as Prime Minister, provided that he or she obtains the approval of two-thirds of the parliament, 47.98 percent disapproved of this scenario, saying an outsider Prime Minister would lack the experience necessary in managing the affairs of the country. On the other hand, 45.76 percent have expressed agreement, saying it is a viable option in finding a suitable leader of the country.

BANGKOK, 4 May 2015 – The Ministry of Labour is set to extend labour protection coverage to all groups of informal workers, according to a ministry official.

The Deputy Permanent-Secretary of the Labour Ministry Arrug Phrommanee has said regarding the management of the informal workers, that authorities must consider providing labour protection to diverse groups of informal workers that current work in the country.

He has said that the previously established ministerial regulations on labour protection to agricultural labourers, housewives, workers working at home, and fisheries workers are still insufficient in covering all categories of informal workers. Therefore the ministry needs to consider issuing additional laws to cover all the groups, such as contract farmers.

The ministry also needs to consider providing access to capital for informal workers as well, as currently the only foundation that provides capital to informal workers is only for workers working at home.

The Labour Ministry Deputy Permanent-Secretary has further said that coordination centers for informal workers in each province will have to provide service to the informal workers while coordinating with the provincial labour networks, as well as collecting the information of informal workers in each area such as the type of occupation, quantity, and contact information, in order to provide a wider coverage of services for the management of informal workers in the future.

SONGKHLA, 4 May 2015 – The Commander in Chief of the Royal Thai Army today went to investigate the death case of about 30 Rohingya people on location, while urging a solution to eradicate human trafficking in Thailand.

BANGKOK, 4 April 2015 - The Constitution Drafting Committee (CDC) has revealed that in order for a public referendum to be held in relation to the new constitution, an amendment must be made to the current interim constitution.

According to one of the CDC members, Pakorn Preeyakorn, if all reform bodies agree to a referendum, the cabinet and the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) must submit an amendment proposal to the National Legislative Assembly, which must be vetted and voted on like any other constitution amendment.

He also noted that Section 44 of the interim constitution, which grants the head of the NCPO overriding power over national security issues, cannot be used to initiate a public referendum. The interim constitution does not give the government and the NCPO the authority to make changes to the charter; therefore, a referendum cannot be initiated solely by the Prime Minister.

NONTHABURI, 4 May 3015 – The Ministry of Public Health (MOPH) is set to send the second medical team to aid in helping rescue and relief operations for the public of Nepal affected by the earthquake disaster, says the DMS Deputy Director General.

BANGKOK, 4 April 2015 - The Constitution Drafting Committee (CDC) will continue to receive input on the new charter and will submit the second draft of the charter to the National Reform Council (NRC) on or before July 23.

A CDC member, Pakorn Priyakorn, said the charter drafters have already held public input forums in thirteen provinces, with an additional seven destinations to be held soon.

In addition, the cabinet and the National Council for Peace and Order will submit its input by May 16, whereas the NRC will submit additional proposals by May 25.

After receiving the input the CDC will hold amendment discussions from June 8 to Jul 16, and submit the second draft of the constitution back to the NRC on or before July 23.

BANGKOK, 4 May 2015 - The National Reform Council, the Cabinet and the National Council for Peace and Order are expected to formally propose their suggested changes in the draft charter later this month.

BANGKOK, 4 May 2015  – The Thai exports of chilled, frozen and processed chicken in Q1 increased by 20 per cent to 140,000 tonnes with a rise of 8.3 per cent in revenue, worth US$567m, compared to the same period of last year, according to Nuntawan Sakuntanaga, Director-General of the Department of International Trade Promotion (DITP).

The largest expansion was seen in the South African market which nearly doubled its order to 180 per cent, followed by Malaysia raising its orders to 170 per cent and Cambodia to 100 per cent.

Ms. Nuntawan believed that the strong growth in the Thai chicken exports was a result of the markets' confidence in Thailand’s highly-standardized agricultural process and experienced skilled labor.

This year, Thailand expected to export 620,000 tonnes of chicken products, a 5 per cent increase from last year with an estimated income of US$2,570m.

BANGKOK, 4 May 2015 (NNT) - The Meteorological Department has warned of a new round of summer thunderstorm with hails in the East, the lower Northeast and the central region soon, Anusorn Kaewkangwan, deputy director-general of the Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Department (DDPM) said on Monday.

The weather bureau predicted that a low pressure system would cover the upper part of Thailand causing the temperature to rise during the day and even higher at night in some areas. The southeasterly winds would bring humidity from the South China Sea and the Gulf of Thailand to the lower Northeast, the East and the central region, causing isolated thundershowers in those areas.

People who are affected by the extreme weather and other natural disasters should contact local DDPM offices which will forward their request for assistance to governors or provincial authorities in their respective areas. Also, they may call hotline 1784 around the clock.

BANGKOK, 3 May 2015 - The Hong Kong Trade and Industry Department imported 49,900 tons of rice from Thailand in the first quarter 2015, a 48.9% increase compared to the same period last year. The higher rice exports to Hong Kong brought Thailand’s rice exports to all markets to 62.2% in the first quarter 2015.

Spokesperson of the Ministry of Commerce Duangkamon Chiambut said the Hong Kong Trade and Industry imported 80,400 tons of rice during the first three months this year, increasing by 0.75%. Drop in Thai Hom Mali rice price and importers’ higher confidence in Thai rice were important factors which led to the first quarter growth, the spokesperson added. The strengthening of relations between the Thai government and Hong Kong rice importers also helped Thai rice exports achieved a growth target of higher than 60%, she said.

In 2013, Thailand exported 6.6 million tons of rice, worth 4.42 billion USD, worldwide. In 2014, Thai rice exports were 10.9 million tons or 5.34 billion USD.

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