Advance Blog

March 14, 2022
Australian Embassy

Headlines summary as of 14 March 2022

News

Newly confirmed casesTotal CasesDeath tollHospitalised/ intensive care patients
22,130Domestic +22,103Abroad+273,136,649( since 2020)                                      69225,889
Total vaccination1st dose vaccine recipients(28 Jan – 12 March )2nd dose vaccine recipients(28 Jan – 12 March)3rd dose vaccine recipients(28 Jan – 12 March )
125,589,061  (+218,260  )54,386,322(+87,257 yesterday) 78.2 %49,984,694(+19,565 yesterday) 71.9 %21,716,208(+ 117,509yesterday) 31.2%

  Sources : Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) and Department of Control 

Political news

  • Opposition organized the seminar yesterday entitled ‘the Opposition Leader Meets the People‘  that questioned PM Prayut’s 8-years tenure as allowed by the constitution at Amari Watergate hotel ;
  • Pheu Thai and opposition leader,Chonlanan Srikaew cited the PM tenure is due on August 8 this year and urge him to resign before August for his own dignity.
  • Move Forward Party also  address that PM Prayut’s prolonged stay will lead the opposition to seek an interpretation from the charter court.
  • In this event,  Pheu Thai Party also addressed  the party  is confident of having support of 30 MPs from small coalition parties. These parties including Setthakit Thai (Thai Economic) Party are the key of to decide the government’s fate in  next censure debate under Section 151 of the Constitution.
  • Pheu Thai party leader also hinted to the media that Paethongtan Shinawatra, the youngest daughter of an exile former PM Thaksin’s Shinawatra is possible to be one  of the party’s PM candidates, adding it depends on support from the general public ThaiPost
  • To appease the smaller parties, the PM  sets to hold a dinner party with key members of the smaller coalition parties at 18:00 hrs on March 17 at the Ratchapruek Club.This includes leaders from  Thai Forest Conservation Party,  Thai Rak Tham party and Thai Local Power Party.  Thai Rak Tham will discuss with the PM on the bill to improve pensions for the elderly, which requires the prime minister’s approval before it can go before parliament for deliberation. Bangkokpost
  • Bangkok governor, Aswin Kwanmuang, who turned up this position from the appointment of 2014 coup makers’ order ( NCPO) will compete in the Bangkok governor race that will be organized in mid of May  NationTV

Economic News

Akara Mine

  • On 11 March, villagers from Pichit, Phetchaboon and Phitsnulok provinces totalling 100 convened at the city hall in Phichit province.  They submitted a petition to support the reopening of Akara mine for the many economic benefits it generates for local communities.  They claimed that opposers of the mine’s reopening who came out to protest a few days earlier have done so with ulterior motives.  They pointed out that one of the protestors wanted to operate his own gold mine and is seeking a mining exploration license from the government, and as such did not want Akara mine to resume operation.  Sources: Post Today    TNN Thailand INN News Poojadkarn online
  • The Primary Industries and Mines Department (PIMD), Ministry of Industry has issued a press release in response to queries raised by a human rights group on Akara mines’ operation and its impacts on the environment, health, lives and occupations of local communities.  The group had previously handed a petition to the opposition party, seeking their assistance in calling for the government to revoke Akara mine’s mining licenses until a comprehensive EHIA is conducted and the studies concluded.  Sources:  Siam Rath Post Today

Others

  • In February, Ministry of Commerce (MoC) had granted 44 foreign investors who brought in some 5.781 billion Baht with licenses to operate businesses in Thailand under the Foreign Business Act.  Most were investments in the S-Curve industries, such as Broad Band System Products and Internet of Things.  Of the 44 investors, five are investors in the EEC zone, with investment value of 2.285 billion Baht, equivalent to 39 percent of total investment value.  This proves that EEC remains a popular investment destination for foreigners.  For the EEC, the top investors are from Japan and Singapore, mainly investing in maintenance and repair of machinery.  Sources:   Thansettakij    Prachachart Turakij  Naew Na
  • Customs Department is working with the Board of Investment on preferential tariff measures for the import of Electric Vehicle (EVs) components, which are expected to be finalised by the end of this year. 

This follows on from the BOI’s announcement on incentives promote investments in Battery Electric Vehicles (BEV).  Sources:  Prachachart Turakij Poojarkarn Online

  • A Japanese and a Chinese car manufacturer plan to invest in manufacturing battery-powered pickups in Thailand later this year, according to an anonymous Finance Ministry source.  The government’s recent announcement of tax incentives and subsidies to promote investments in EVs had garnered their interests.  The new excise tax structure for EVs is expected to be enforced within March.  Source:  Bangkok Post
  • Ministry of Commerce suggested that Thai exporters adopt BCG principle to their operations as the  WTO and super powers such as the US, EU and China are gearing up to implement environment-related trade barriers.  Source:  Krungthep Turakij newspaper, 14 March 2022
  • Betong airport in Yala province officially opens today, raising hope it will revitalise tourism and the economy in the country’s southernmost district.  Source:  Bangkok Post
The Australian Embassy Bangkok
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