2 Commerce Ministry directors-general transferred

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BANGKOK, July 7 — Directors-general for the Department of Foreign Trade and the Department of Internal Trade accepted their transfer orders but denied involvement in any corruption, including the rice-pledging scheme of the past government.

Chutima Bunyapraphasara, permanent secretary for commerce, on Friday ordered the transfer of Surasak Riengkrua from the Department of Foreign Trade and Somchart Sroythong  from the Department of Internal Trade to inspector-general positions at the Ministry of Commerce.

Duangporn Rodphayat, a commercial adviser, acting director-general of the Department of Foreign Trade and Jintana Chaiyawonnagal, deputy director-general of the Department of Trade Negotiations, is acting director-general of the Department of Internal Trade.

Staff have moved personal belongings from the offices of both directors-general over the weekend, even as official transfer orders have yet to arrive.

Mr Somchart said he had not seen the order but said he had already talked with the permanent secretary.

He said he was ready to follow the order and expected to become an acting commercial adviser.

Despite the transfer, he insisted that he had worked at his best for almost the past year at the Department of Internal Trade. He cited his work for the rice-pledging scheme and price control and he said his work was free of corruption.

Mr Surasak said that he felt relieved.

The transferred official insisted that during the past year he had worked hard to help farmers sell rice at good prices and streamlined export and import procedures.

He stood firm that his work was corruption-free.