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AYUTTHAYA, 16 September 2014 - Her Royal Highness Princess Soamsawali yesterday went to Proatsat Monastery in Bang Pa-in District, where she laid a foundation stone for the construction of a ‘chaitya’ Hall, a kind of pagoda to commemorate His Royal Highness Krom Luang Wongsa Dhiraj Snid, a half brother of King Rama III and founder of the House of Snidvongs. 

BANGKOK, 16 September 2014 – The train service in the Deep South has resumed normal operation following completion of repairs to the rail tracks in Narathiwat that were recently damaged by an explosion.

The train service from Hat Yai in Songkhla to Su-ngai Ko-lok in Narathiwat resumed on Monday following the completion of repairs prompted by Friday's blast on the rail tracks in Ra-ngae district, Narathiwat. Masses of people flocked to utilize the train service on the first day of resumption; many said that they welcomed the resumption of service because alternative modes of travel, such as buses, were more expensive.

In Yala, many passengers were seen boarding the day's first train to Su-ngai Ko-lok. Most of the passengers were those who needed to go to work in Su-ngai Ko-lok district. Police and railway security volunteers were also seen boarding the train.

BANGKOK, 14 September 2014  - The Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand (MRTA) is expediting the “Blue Line” electric train project from Tha Phra – Phutthamonthon Sai 4. The project’s auctions are expected to begin in 2016. 

YALA, 15 September 2014 - People flocked to Yala train station this morning as it is now back in service after a 3-day closure due to a terrorist attack on the train tracks. 

PHICHIT, 15 September 2014  - The Social Development and Human Security Minister has ordered related agencies to follow up on the flood situation in Phichit province. 

BANGKOK, 15 September 2014 – Throngs of loyal subjects lined the street to greet Their Majesties the King and Queen as they traveled from Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok to Klai Kangwon Palace in Prachuap Khiri Khan province today. 

SONGKHLA, 15 September 2014  - The Meteorological Department is forecasting that from today until Thursday (15-18 September) a rather strong southwest monsoon will move across the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand with increasing precipitation, resulting in likely scattered to fairly widespread thundershowers all over the country, as well as isolated heavy to very heavy rain in the East and the Southwest coast region of the country. 

Friday, 12 September 2014 17:52

UTCC concerned about increasing household debt

BANGKOK, 12 September 2014  – The University of Thai Chamber of Commerce (UTCC) revealed an increasing number of debts among credit-card holders.

Thanavat Polvichai, the Director for the UTCC’s Economic and Business Forecasting Center, expressed his worry after he found out that about 87% of Thai credit-card holders had overdue payments, which lead to an increasing concern of growing levels of household debt.

The center found that groups with the highest debts were students and cardholders who earn income less than 20,000 baht a month, yet they had outstanding debts three times higher than their monthly earnings.

UTCC conducted a survey of 1,198 participants taken during Sept 1-6. The result of the survey showed that only 13% of the total participants paid off their entire balance, while 47.7% paid 10-20% of their balance, 28% paid only 5% of their balance, and 11.3% defaulted on their debt payments.

The university suggested that the government should educate people on self-sufficient living, reducing costs of living, managing interest rates, and creating jobs in a bid to tackle the issue of credit-card and household debt.

SURAT THANI, 12 September 2014 - Blood cockles living in Bandon Bay in Surat Thani province have died off, causing losses worth around 500 million baht for shellfish farmers.

Surat Thani governor Chatpong Chatphut has gone down to a section of the bay covering 20,000 rai of land in Kanjanadit District. The Bandon Bay serves as a natural spawning ground for many aquatic creatures.

According to Fisheries officers in the province, the blood cockles may have died from a parasite living in the waters of the bay.

Mr. Chatpong, however, has instructed local authorities to inspect the quality of water following complaints from locals that a rubber glove production factory has been occasionally dumping wastewater into the bay.

BANGKOK, 11 September 2014 -- Quality and price improvement of natural rubber is the target of the new 10-year rubber development plan starting September 1st this year. Permanent Secretary for Agriculture and Cooperatives Chavalit Chukhajorn said the new Rubber Development Plan to be implemented from 2014 to 2024 will take a holistic approach in tackling problems relating to the rubber industry. The plan will control the rubber planting area in the country and concentrate more on the quality and price of rubber produce. Under the plan, Thailand’s rubber output will be reduced by about 100,000 tons by the end of the first-year implementation, or 700,000 tons after 7 years. Towards that goal, the ministry will put down 400,000 rai of unproductive rubber trees annually and encourage growers to grow alternative plants that give higher economic returns, on an estimated area of 100,000 rai in seven years.

Besides, the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives will promote technology transfers to enable rubber growers to reduce production cost and adopt efficient technologies to raise their annual output. The Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives will provide five billion baht in loan to rubber growers to support their bids to raise the production capacity and develop processing techniques. The Ministry will also encourage mixed cultivation in rubber plantations where other economic crops will be grown between rows of rubber trees. It has set aside 120 million baht in soft loans to be provided to planters who are interested in this project.

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