BANGKOK, 5 July 2015 - Residents of southern Yala province are getting ready to celebrate Hari Raya, the Feast of Breaking the Fast.

Thai Muslim have been seen flocking to the trade district in the center of Yala province where families have been busy shopping for new clothes and accessories for the upcoming of the Hari Raya festival or Eid al-Fitr.

The festival, which celebrates the end of fasting, is scheduled to take place in fewer than 10 days.

Local merchants said that shopping has become lively since last Friday, when residents of several districts in the province traveled to select new personal belongings.

The Sheikhul Islam Office of Thailand has informed all Muslim to observe the moon on Thursday, July 16 after the sunset.

If the moon can be observed, the following day, which is July 17 will be the Eid al-Fitr day. But if the moon cannot be observed, the Eid al-Fitr day will instead be on July 18.

BANGKOK, 5 July 2015 - The Department of Labour Protection and Welfare has instructed its branches in twenty-two coastal provinces to closely observe impacts on fish workers as a result of the strike by fishing operators.

Director-General Peeraphat Pornsirilertkit said the department has so far found no negative impacts on fishery workers. Trawler owners who are unable to take their boats out to the sea still pay their workers and provide other benefits on a usual basis.

Mr.Peeraphat said surveys on the welfare of affected workers will be conducted constantly to ensure that government assistance will reach all of them thoroughly.

For unregistered boats, Mr.Peeraphat stressed, fishing operators should register their vessels and equipment within the extended deadline of July 15 to meet the government’s new requirements being enforced. Only after the registration that their boats would be able to set sail again, the director-general said.

BANGKOK, 5 July 2015 - The final day of the Thai Teaw Thai tourism event featured discounts on many tourism packages and services, attracting a large attendance the entire day.

Many people attended the last day of the 35th Thai Teaw Thai and the 2015 Thai Teaw Nok tourism expo at BITEC Bang Na exhibition center in Bangkok, to book and purchase tourism packages at exclusive discounted prices.

The event features more than 600 booths selling tourism packages and services from both Thai and international companies on hotel and resort reservations, tour packages, air tickets, traveling gear. Tourism services are on a special Green Season Sales discount period.

Most of the visitors were enthusiastic about booking packages for their holidays, and were attracted by the special packages that combined accommodation and tour activities in an attractive price range. Premium gift sets were provided to those purchasing the packages at a certain price as well.

Entrepreneurs at this event mentioned that the crowd in this year's event were spending more on weekend and national holiday bookings, when compared to previous years.

Tourism Police and officials have also set up their booths in this event to provide license verification to all tourism companies participating in this event, as well as answering all questions from the visitors.

BANGKOK, 5 July 2015 - The Metropolitan Waterworks Authority (MWA) Governor has confirmed the overall water condition still falls within the standard suitable for the production of tap water. The state enterprise is considering reducing water rates to help farmers who have been affected by sea water intrusion.

MWA Governor Thanasak Watanathana noted that currently the saltwater has moved deeper inland, and have at some point intruded into the Chao Phraya River to the Sum Lae pumping station in Pathum Thani province where raw water is distributed to the MWA for tap water production.

He said that despite the higher sea water level, the overall water quality is still acceptable for use in tap water production. Moreover, the Chao Phraya River is now receiving fresh water from the Bhumibol, Sirikit, and Pasak dams at the combined amount of more than 700 million cubic meters per day.

He stated that there were no prospects for the water to turn brackish for the next 30 days. And after that period, more rain is expected from the royal rainmaking operations.

For farmers in Bangkok, Nonthaburi, and Samut Prakan who have been affected by sea water intrusion which prevents them from using the water from Chao Phraya River for cultivation due to the unusual level of salinity, the MWA Governor said that the MWA would offer them a discount in water fee at 8.50 baht per liter for the first 50 liters, and 10.50 baht for every liter exceeding that volume. So far 570 farmers have registered for the discount.

The MWA Governor also thanked the government and related sectors which have campaigned for the reduction of rice farming this year, and the farmers who have cooperated in water conservation.

PRACHINBURI, 5 July 2015,The central province of Prachinburi is currently holding its 9th annual fruit fair at the OTOP center in Muang District, featuring santol, rambutan, durian, and ornamental plants as well other OTOP items.

The event is being organized by the provincial administration office and the local administration office of Ban Phra Sub-district. Deputy Prachinburi Governor Somrirk Buayai, presided over the opening ceremony of the event, which attracted a large number of the locals.

The event is aimed at introducing an additional distribution channel for local fruit growers, OTOP manufacturers, while promoting the province’s famous santol to the public at the same time. The fair, which kicked off on Friday, will run until July 12.

Monday, 06 July 2015 09:16

Drought crisis abates in 27 provinces

BANGKOK, 5 July 2015 -The Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation says drought problems in 27 out of 40 affected provinces have abated thanks to the efforts of different agencies.

According to Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Director-General Chatchai Promlert, 13 provinces across the country remain heavily affected by the prolonged dry season.

The situation in many provinces has eased as provincial interior offices, the military and related agencies mobilized their resources to come up with emergency measures, including the dispatch of water trucks to severely-affected communities, the survey of new water sources, the rain enhancement operations and the launch of discount product fairs, said Mr. Chatchai.

A low pressure trough which has reached The Gulf of Tonkin will cause rainfalls in the upper North and upper Northeast, while a southwestern monsoon will bring thundershowers to the western part of the North, the South and the central region during this period, the Department Chief added.

It is expected that the forthcoming cloudbursts will help alleviate the impact of the dry season.

TRAT, 5 July 2015, A mobile blue flag fair was held in Muang District of Trat Province yesterday, in which locals can purchase a number of essential items at discounted prices.

The campaign in Trat was jointly launched by the provincial administration office, the internal trade office, and the Trat Royal Thai Marine Corps.

Eggs, cooking oil, sugar and 5-kg bagged rice were on offer at 50 percent discount, whereas detergent, soap, toothpaste, shampoo, fish sauce, canned fish and instant noodle were available at 30 percent off the market price. A large number of the locals availed themselves of the offers.

According to officials, the campaign is part of the government’s efforts in assisting drought affected locals, adding that the mobile blue flag unit will also be held in 21 other sub-districts of Trat before July 23.

BANGKOK, 5 July 2015 - The Ministry of Social Development and Human Resources (MSDHS) and related agencies will be hosting the Workability Asia Conference 2015, focusing on the employment promotion for persons with disabilities.

Workability Thailand's Director Suporntum Mongkolsawadi has said that the Workability Asia Conference 2015 will be held in Pattaya, Chonburi on 8-10 July 2015 at Hilton Pattaya hotel. The conference will be organized by the MSDHS, the Ministry of Labour, the Public Relations Department (PRD), leading business groups, and other related agencies.

He has said that this conference will be attended by 350 academics and delegates from groups that represent persons with disabilities from all over Asia, to enhance business capabilities through the efficient management of human resources, which includes persons with disabilities. The cooperation would be extended to the ASEAN Community, where persons with disabilities' would be included into the regional workforce.

He has stressed however that this matter should not be regarded as the way to provide help to persons with disabilities, as they have equal rights to work and to contribute in businesses from the beginning, but the maximum utilization of human resources will in turn help improve the economy.

An exhibition showing HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn’s many contributions for persons with disabilities will also take place at this event, allowing attendees to learn from the model on how to promote the employment of persons with disabilities, providing them with more job opportunities.

UTHAI THANI, 05 July 2015,  The province of Uthai Thani is planning to drill 17 artesian wells in all of the area’s 8 drought affected districts, according to Uthai Thani Governor, Somchai Lertpongpakorn.

The drilling, which is to kick off soon, is a joint operation between the provincial administration office and the Department of Groundwater.

The groundwater will be used for both consumption and other general purposes. Aside from the drilling, the governor said his office was planning to dredge the existing wells around the province which have been clogged up or damaged.

Two wells in Thap Than District will be dredged beginning in July, with 10 in more scheduled for Nong Sa Sub-district, said the governor, adding that the operation will be carried out in the area hardest hit first. He assured the residents that all of the 200 clogged wells will be up and running soon

BANGKOK, 4 July 2015  – Prime Minister Prayut Cha-o-cha has called on the public to patiently await social reconciliation, while urging related sectors to work hard towards unity.