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Thailand Live Monday 10 Oct 2011

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Thailand Live Monday 10 October 2011

News, Bits and Tweets

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Keep up to date with live updates from the news, hour by hour.

For breaking news,national, regional and international news updates on a daily basis only, this thread is closed to commentary so that those who wish to follow the news can find it here...

Commentary is still open for Thailand news in the relevant thread posted in News Clippings.

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Related topic: Thailand Live Saturday 8 Oc 2011

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Evacuation centres ready: city officials

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Bangkok prepared to face deluge: Sukhumbhand

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MP proposes pay cut for lawmakers

The Nation

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Pheu Thai Party spokesman Prompong Nopparit said he would propose his idea to cut MPs' salaries to help flood victims in the party meeting today.

"We are elected by the people, so we should give them our support when they have problems," he said.

Prompong said the idea would start with his party and if passed he would put the idea to the whole of the House.

Chart Pattana Puea Pandin party leader and Industry Minister Wannarat Channukul agreed with the idea. "I and my party are ready," he said.

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-- The Nation 2011-10-10

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STREET WISE

PM Yingluck should dump silly populist policies and work on long-term solutions

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Achara Deboonme

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Prince, Princess provide kitchens

The Nation

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To feed flood victims in Ayutthaya, mobile kitchens provided by HRH Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn and HRH Princess Srirasmi, the Royal Consort of the Crown Prince, have been set up near the city hall.

Donations are welcome through the HRH Prince Dipangkorn Rasmijoti Fund, which is named after their son, through savings account 1324549979 at Bangkok Bank's Bang Sue branch.

HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn has also granted permission for flood victims to stay at the Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya University campus in the province, while Thammasat University's Rangsit campus is also sheltering a number of flood victims.

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-- The Nation 2011-10-10

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Govt, manufacturers to discuss assistance

Nalin Viboonchart

The Nation

Industry Ministry officials will meet today with manufacturers and private-sector representatives, including the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) and the Thai Chamber of Commerce, to evaluate the impact of flooding on the industrial sector and how the government can help.

FTI officials were scheduled to meet Industry Minister Wannarat Charnnukul today to seek financial and other assistance in getting flood-hit factories up and running again, federation chairman Payungsak Chartsuthipol said.

The federation would propose that the government suspend collecting electricity and water bills from the affected factories during a recovery period, and employ tax measures to help them reduce their costs, such as deducting machinery-repair bills, Payungsak said.

It would also ask the government to set up a Bt10-billion fund to extend low-interest loans to flooded factories to use for repairs, FTI secretary-general Sommart Kunset said.

Wannarat said one likely relief measure would be a waiver by the Board of Investment (BoI) of duties on replacement machinery imported by factory owners. More measures would be devised, he said, pending today's discussion. The minister added that the Small and Medium Enterprise Development Bank of Thailand had set aside Bt2 billion for low-interest loans to affected manufacturers.

Narapote Thewtanom, deputy governor of the Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand (IEAT), said the Saharat Nakorn Industrial Estate in flood-hit Ayutthaya was likely to take more than five months to fully recover, up from previous estimates of between three and five months.

Total damage at the estate could exceed Bt30 billion, depending on how fast it can recover. The height of the flood water there was estimated at four metres.

Evaluating the damage

Narapote said the IEAT would meet manufacturers operating in the Saharat Nakorn estate today at the Bang Pa-In Industrial Estate in Ayutthaya to assess damage and discuss relief measures for workers and operators.

The Saharat Nakorn estate has 43 manufacturing plants with 14,696 workers and a total investment value of Bt9.4 billion. Japanese manufacturing facilities represent the largest proportion of investment in the estate at 70 per cent, followed by Thai-owned plants with 20 per cent.

The Hi-Tech and Bang Pa-In industrial estates had not been hit by the floods, but the IEAT was watching the situation closely, Narapote said.

Amara Charoengitwattanagun, an independent director at Rojana Industrial Park in Ayutthaya, said the park's operators had not been able to assess total damage at the estate, which was hit by flooding on Saturday.

Approximately 1,000 rai of Rojana's total 10,000 rai was affected, encompassing 10 manufacturing plants, including Honda's 200-rai site. The height of the water was approximately 1 metre.

She said Rojana estate is building barriers to stop water spreading to the rest of the park. If the entire estate floods, damage was likely to far exceed the expected Bt30 billion clean-up bill at Saharat Nakorn Industrial Estate, she said.

Honda has two manufacturing plants at Rojana Industrial Park, Ayutthaya, with total investment in Thailand of Bt21 billion. The company commenced its second manufacturing facility with an investment value of Bt6.2 billion at the estate in 2008. The auto plant is the production base of many Honda models including Accord, Civic, CR-V, Jazz and City. Honda has total production capacity of 240,000 units per year at Rojana.

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-- The Nation 2011-10-10

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Attack on Chinese boats in Mekong River kills 11

BEIJING, October 10, 2011 (AFP) - Eleven Chinese were killed and two missing after their cargo boats were attacked in the golden triangle area of the Mekong River, state media said on Sunday.

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