Cut PTT profits, spin off pipelines, gas plants: TDRI

The Thailand Development Research Institute yesterday urged a cut in PTT’s profits on natural-gas pipeline transmission and breaking up its monopoly in the lucrative pipeline and gas-separation businesses. TDRI researcher Duenden Nikomborirak said the Energy Regulatory Committee should issue a “third-party access” regulation to allow other companies to use the PTT’s gas-pipeline system and receiving/dispatching […]

Farmers’ aid decision pushed back

A final decision on measures to help farmers has been put off, with the rice-related working panels asking for more time to prepare information. As scheduled, the first meeting of the rice administration and management policy committee yesterday chaired by junta chief Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha was due to give the nod to short-term measures that […]

Short-term rice aid proposed

Phusadee Arunmas  Plan will limit crop production costs Measures to address low paddy prices and spiralling production costs are likely to be finalised tomorrow, but some farmers may feel a bit disappointed as neither cash handouts nor any other sort of compensation will be involved. The meeting between Gen Chatchai Sarikalya, deputy head of economic […]

2015 projects could run to B100bn

Wichit Chantanusornsiri & Sriwipa Siripunyawit  Details and budgets still subject to revision The first-year investment budget for the 2.4-trillion-baht infrastructure plan to be proposed today by the transport strategy committee is expected to reach 100 billion baht. The infrastructure plan will be forwarded to ACM Prajin Juntong, head of the economic team at the National […]

The future of Thai labour amid negative factors

The Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI) is looking beyond the here and now to warn labourers about the effects of economic problems and the prolonged political crisis while also warning that unemployment among university graduates may continue to rise. The TDRI said the prolonged and unresolved political situation had increasingly inflamed other issues in society […]

Grain of hope

Two farm economists offer rational solutions to helping rice farmers earn a living wage. By Sriwipa Siripunyawit  After six months of political drama and negative economic reports, the recent bulletin about rice farmers being paid for their pledged rice was a rare bit of good news. Smiles from poor rice farmers gave many in the […]

Drivers face tough new licence test

Officials expect more to fail The Department of Land Transport will introduce a tougher driving licence examination from today in a bid to boost road safety. Department chief Asdsathai Rattanadilok Na Phuket said 80% of road accidents nationwide were caused by a lack of discipline and alertness on the part of drivers, prompting the DLT […]

Tardy justice system delivers frustration to citizens

Itsakul Unahakate One little known factor that causes significant slowness in Thai criminal courts is overcriminalisation. By overcriminalisation, I mean that some crimes should be recategorised as civil crimes. Two such crimes that need to be decriminalised are defamation and bounced cheques. As the backlog of cases in the criminal courts pile up, a major […]

‘Half’ of all double-deck buses unsafe

Amornrat Mahitthirook Land transport authorities have revealed nearly half of double-decker buses have failed basic safety tests, as major transport operators are torn over a plan to ban the vehicles. Caretaker Transport Minister Chadchart Sittipunt said yesterday many double-decker buses on the roads were unsafe and he wanted operators to order their drivers to take […]

Syllabus shakeup to be piloted

Lamphai Intathep A revised version of the national curriculum will be piloted in 100 schools in the 2014 academic year which starts in May. A reform of the country’s basic curriculum was initiated by caretaker Deputy Prime Minister Pongthep Thepkanchana while he was education minister. The curriculum reform panel was led by Pawit Thongroj, an […]

State support for R&D urged

Wasu Vipoosanapat Executives want wider investment incentives The Board of Investment (BoI) and relevant state agencies should take firmer steps to get the private sector to invest in research and development (R&D), business leaders say. Somkiat Tangkitvanich, president of the Thailand Development Research Institute, said yesterday that the investment promotion agency has yet to prove […]

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