BANGKOK, 17 September 2014 – Defense Minister Gen Prawit Wongsuwan is gearing up for expenditure planning for fiscal 2015 while admitting that a smaller budget has been set aside for his ministry compared to the previous year.

After the National Legislative Assembly’s deliberation of the 2015 budget bill came to a conclusion, Gen Prawit pointed out that there has been a reduction to the Defense Ministry’s allocation for the next fiscal year. The approved amount is 192.95 billion baht, equivalent to 1.4 percent of the national GDP, as opposed to 1.7 percent in 2014.

The minister has assigned newly-appointed Permanent Secretary for Defense Gen Sirichai Ditthakul to arrange a meeting with all departments and offices in order to draw up an expenditure plan in accordance with the given budget.

Meanwhile, Deputy Defense Minister Gen Udomdej Sitabutr commented on the ministry’s ongoing mission to resolve unrest in the Deep South, saying Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha has already laid out a clear operational guideline. He affirmed the ministry will carry on with the security operations to its fullest ability and that improvements will be evident.

Wednesday, 17 September 2014 16:01

Khon Kaen to hold Silk Festival

KHON KAEN, 17 September 2014  -- The northeastern province of Khon Kaen is to hold the 'Silk Festival 2014' later this month.

According to Governor Kamthorn Thavornsathit, the event will be held in honor of Her Majesty the Queen, who has spared no efforts promoting Thai silk to the world market for years.

Silk is one of Khon Kaen's key OTOP products, especially the Mudmee silk, which has been famous globally for its high quality and unique design. The festival will be held at Central Plaza, Khon Kaen, on September 20 and 21.

More than 50 booths will be set up at the venue to display every process of silk production. The event will also feature fashion shows and traditional on stage performances as well as other activities.

BANGKOK, 17 September 2014 -- Thailand's consumer confidence has risen for three months in a row, says the Ministry of Commerce.

According to Amparwon Pichalai, Director General of Trade Policy and Strategy Office, Thailand's consumer confidence climbed again in August, reflecting rising confidence on the nation's stability in political and economic conditions. The index has been on the upward trend since June.

The index in August rose to 44.0, slightly increasing from the 41.4 in July. The level was the highest in nearly a decade. Meanwhile, confidence towards future situation (three months ahead) rose to 47.8.

Although those indicators are still in the negative territory, lower than 50, the three-consecutive-month improvement has shown the uptrend in confidence in the situation in Thailand, after the National Council for Peace and Order took power late in May.

PHNOM PENH, 16 September 2014  – To experience the authentic food culture of a country, one must try the local food being sold from carts along the streets. 

Bangkok, 17 September 2014 – Minister of Commerce H.E. Gen. Chatchai Sarikulya presided over the opening ceremony of the two-day YPO Insights ASEAN Summit at the Plaza Athenee Hotel in Bangkok, an initiative of the Young Presidents’ Organization’s Southeast Asia Chapter. 

BANGKOK, 17 September 2014 – The National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) has reiterated that all Cabinet ministers are required to file their asset declarations by October 3 before the details are made public in the following month.

Deputy Secretary-General of the NACC Worawit Sukboon has met with the Cabinet in order to clarify the procedures involved in the declaration of their assets and liabilities. He stressed that related documents must be submitted to the NACC within 30 days after their swear-in ceremony or no later than October 3. Afterwards, the acquired information is due to be publicized on November 2.

Besides the ministers themselves, their spouses and children under the legal age must also go through the asset examination process.

As for the prohibition of ministers from holding more than five percent shares in a private company, Mr Worawit noted that exceptions can be made if the ministers notify the NACC of their violation in 30 days after official appointment. The shares must also be transferred to another juristic person appointed as a nominee within 90 days.

Mr Worawit affirmed that the NACC is approaching the asset scrutiny process with the same standard as that used on previous governments. He added that the assets and liabilities of each member of the National Legislative Assembly which were declared earlier are now ready to be disclosed to the public on October 3.

Wednesday, 17 September 2014 15:41

Ranong inundated by flash floods

RANONG, 17 September 2014 - Heavy rains which have been battering Ranong for several day have caused inundation in many areas in the city since Wednesday morning.

Authorities have warned that several areas are now impassable as water levels are so high. The province of Ranong has been battered by heavy rains for several days in a row. More than 50 centimeter high water has submerged several communities in the municipal area. Several schools were ordered closed this morning due to the flooding.

Local authorities expect rain to continue today and during the next several days.

BANGKOK, 17 September 2014  - Forensic pathologists from the Institute of Forensic Medicine are going to conduct an autopsy on two British tourists who have been recently murdered in the resort island of Koh Tao. Meanwhile, police have detained six Burmese workers who were suspected to be involved in the incident.

More than 100 police officers from Surat Thani province have searched through hotel rooms occupied by Burmese workers at an undisclosed resort where they found a pair of blood-stained jeans and four I-phones.

Police have detained six of the workers for interrogation and would conduct a DNA test on all of them. The authorities would also set up a war room to gather additional evidence for the case.

Deputy Royal Thai Police chief Pol. Gen. Somyot Poompanmuang has stated that the suspects were possibly Burmese workers based on the CCTV camera footage shown within the area. However, he suggested that only one of them was responsible for the murder.

Nonetheless, autopsy tests would be conducted by forensic pathologists at the Police General Hospital by today (September 17) to solve the case.

BANGKOK, 17 September 2014 – According to the Meteorological Department's daily weather forecast, more rain with some heavy falls, can be expected today and tomorrow, especially in the North and the Northeast regions of the country. 

BANGKOK, 16 September 2014 - Bangkok people are stepping forward with the “preparing for changes in Bangkok” project. 

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