Thailand Aims to Become ASEAN’s Future Energy and Mobility Hub18 May 2023
BANGKOK (NNT) - Thailand is now positioning itself as ASEAN’s future energy and mobility hub, aiming to contribute to global sustainability efforts through collaboration with countries worldwide. Deputy Permanent Secretary for Energy Veerapat Kiatfuengfoo unveiled this ambitious objective during his speech at the opening ceremony of the "Future Energy Asia and Future Mobility Asia Exhibition and Summit 2023" on May 17.Emphasizing the importance of green and clean energy with minimal environmental impact, Veerapat highlighted that numerous countries, including Thailand, have committed to achieving carbon neutrality and net zero emissions by 2050. He stressed that sustainability requires concerted efforts and expressed Thailand’s aspiration to serve as the Southeast Asia region’s center, facilitating the exchange of green innovation technology and energy solutions with the rest of the world.Echoing Veerapat’s sentiment, Pisut Painmanakul, secretary to Thailand’s Minister of Energy, said Thailand already possesses several advantages that position it as a regional hub for clean energy and mobility. Both Veerapat and Pisut noted, however, that Thailand cannot achieve sustainability alone and stressed the importance of close collaboration with international partners. The pair viewed the "Future Energy Asia and Future Mobility Asia Exhibition and Summit" as a platform to foster such collaboration.The "Future Energy Asia" segment of the event addresses topics spanning the integrated energy value chain, including alternative fuels like renewables, hydrogen, and LNG. Discussions also focus on balancing energy security with net-zero goals and modernizing transmission and distribution grids. The "Future Energy Asia and Future Mobility Asia Exhibition and Summit 2023," held from May 17 to 19, has attracted over 18,000 visitors from more than 70 countries. The event serves as a platform for crucial discussions surrounding Asia’s contribution to the global energy transition and emphasizes the region’s efforts toward decarbonization.
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Thailand Remains Popular Filming Location18 May 2023
BANGKOK (NNT) - Thailand remains a popular filming location among international production houses. Filming activities have generated massive revenue for the country and local people, while at the same time revitalizing the country’s own film industry.Thailand has maintained its reputation as a popular filming location and has recently welcomed the production teams of two series from Singapore and the U.S. television network HBO, who chose Hat Yai City in Songkhla as a filming location.Mr. Patt Rakthongthana, a local coordinator who has worked with international production studios, said these activities have generated income for local communities, as all the production crews contributed to the local economies throughout their shooting schedules.Mr. Patt suggested that proper management and the relaxation of certain regulations would make Thailand even more appealing to international production houses.
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2023 Royal Ploughing Ceremony concludes17 May 2023
BANGKOK (NNT) - This year’s Royal Ploughing Ceremony was carried out today (17 May), signaling the start of the rice growing season in Thailand. The annual ceremony is meant to uplift the spirit of farmers and bring them a good harvest.The Buddhist part of this year’s ceremony was held yesterday at the Temple of the Emerald Buddha in Bangkok, with the Brahman part observed today at Sanam Luang royal plaza.Their Majesties the King and Queen visited Sanam Luang to preside over the ceremony this morning. This year, Agriculture Ministry permanent secretary Prayoon Insakul handled the role of Lord of the Plough. The Brahman ceremony involved using unhusked rice, corn, mung beans, sesame, liquor, water, and grass as offerings to sacred oxen. The latter chose the grass offered, and this was interpreted as a foretelling of a sufficient amount of water for the growing season. Liquor was also consumed by the sacred oxen, and this was taken as a forecast for improved trade with foreign nations and increased convenience in transportation.On this occasion, His Majesty the King presented honorary plaques to farmers recognized for their wisdom as well as outstanding contributors to agriculture in Thailand.Once all parts of today’s ceremony were complete, a large number of observers poured onto the ceremony grounds to collect rice seeds earlier used. The crowd that visited Sanam Luang today comprised ordinary members of the public as well as farmers. Some hailed from the provinces and made the journey as they wanted to collect the rice seeds used in the ceremony to grow in their fields. Some parents visited with their children so the latter could learn about the important royal ceremony.
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Cabinet Approves Extension for Marmoset Vaccine Trial Project17 May 2023
BANGKOK (NNT) - The Cabinet has greenlit an extension for the Marmoset vaccine testing project, aimed at studying the safety and efficacy of a subunit vaccine candidate for COVID-19 prevention. According to Deputy Government Spokesperson Traisulee Traisoranakul, the program was originally set to terminate last month but the project’s timeline has since been extended to December 29 this year.She explained that the extension was prompted by several challenges faced during the project’s implementation, including delays in the purchase and delivery of marmosets, which are crucial for the testing. Additionally, the Cabinet has approved an extension for Phase 2A human trials of a plant-based subunit vaccine candidate, also to December 29th, 2023. Factors such as safety data from previous trials have contributed to the need for an extended timeline in order to ensure maximum safety and efficacy.In addition to these changes, the Cabinet has authorized adjustments to 99 projects across several provinces, with a combined budget of 422.55 million baht. These adjustments involve the cancellation, timeline extension or modification of important project details.
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Gen Prayut thanks people for support, congratulates parties that earned votes17 May 2023
BANGKOK (NNT) - A Cabinet meeting was held normally at Government House yesterday (16 May), with Cabinet ministers also answering many questions from reporters. The prime minister, meanwhile, congratulated all parties that secured votes from the public.Prime Minister Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha said he was still performing his role as the prime minister to the best of his ability. He expressed appreciation for everyone who has given him moral support so far. He thanked members of the public for exercising their rights in Sunday’s election and congratulated all political parties that garnered votes from the public. He said the next step will involve the setting up of the new government and he would like to ask Thais to foster unity and avoid conflicts so national development may continue while sustainability, prosperity, and security may be fostered.Deputy Prime Minister Gen. Prawit Wongsuwon attended today’s Cabinet meeting but did not answer questions from the press about potential government coalition factions or whether he has had talks with the Puea Thai Party.Other ministers who attended the Cabinet meeting expressed their views on potential set-ups of the incoming government coalition and the Senate’s impending vote on a new prime minister. Environment minister Warawut Silpa-archa, in his capacity as leader of the Chart Thai Pattana Party, acknowledged that these are sensitive matters that need to be discussed within his party. He added Chart Thai Pattana is ready to perform as an opposition party, after Move Forward Party declared it will form a government coalition with parties that served as the Opposition during the Prayut Chan-o-cha administration. Mr. Warawut asserted his party was maintaining its standpoints about political neutrality and respect for the monarchy.Prime Minister’s Office Minister Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana, as deputy leader of the United Thai Nation Party, said he was ready to perform as a member of the opposition in the new parliament and will give due respect to the incoming government. He added that personally he did not agree with the policies of the Move Forward Party and therefore would not back the Move Forward leader for the role of prime minister. He noted that Move Forward Party should be able to establish a government coalition with 310 MPs.14 members of the Cabinet were absent from today’s meeting.
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TCC hopeful there will be stable and strong government17 May 2023
BANGKOK (NNT) - The private sector has responded to the election results, acknowledging people’s desire for change. The Thai Chamber of Commerce’s chairman says it is normal for new generations to take roles in national administration.The Thai Chamber of Commerce’s Chairman Sanan Angubolkul has voiced his opinion regarding the election results as the current opposition parties Move Forward and Pheu Thai took the most seats in the lower house. Mr. Sanan said this election, as indicated by a high voter turnout, clearly reflects people’s desire for change. He said given the current results, the Move Forward party should lead the process of forming a government, while the private sector awaits new policies.Mr. Sanan said it was normal for people of the younger generation to hold office in this day and age, which is similar to the United Kingdom, France, and Canada.The TCC chairman noted the crucial element would be the ability to unite people with skills and knowledge in national administration, as all sectors want to see a stable and strong government with the ability to manage the country without interruptions.
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TAT launches Amazing Thailand Culinary City program to woo foodie tourists16 May 2023
BANGKOK (NNT) - The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) aims to continue promoting recognition for Thailand’s culinary attractions this year. Most recently, it launched the Amazing Thailand Culinary City program in support of gastronomy tourism.TAT Deputy Governor for Marketing Communications Chattan Kunjara Na Ayudhya said Amazing Thailand Culinary City was designed to promote food tourism under the Bio-Circular-Green Economy concept. Restaurants are encouraged to develop a system to manage waste from raw materials used in cooking and implement the “zero food waste” policy when creating food for consumers. These efforts will contribute to the development of environmentally and socially responsible tourism that takes the local community into consideration.There are two activities under the program, the first of which is a business matching activity for food tourism businesses. The B2B matching will take place from May 31 to June 2 this year at Queen Sirikit National Convention Center in Bangkok and feature 36 culinary tourism businesses. The second activity caters to tourists who are attracted by gastronomy. The activity will be held in 4 provinces, namely Chiang Mai, Khon Kaen, Phuket, and Chanthaburi. In Chiang Mai, the activity will take place from May 19-21, in Khon Kaen from June 9-11, in Phuket from June 16-18, and in Chanthaburi from June 23-25.Amazing Thailand Culinary City will feature food offerings from various businesses, culinary tours, farm-to-table offers, and showcases by Thai cooking schools. Those interested may find more details on the “Amazing Thailand Culinary City” Facebook page.
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UTN Thanks Supporters and Commits to Following Lead of Election Winners16 May 2023
BANGKOK (NNT) - Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana, deputy leader of the United Thai Nation (UTN) Party, has expressed his gratitude to the party’s supporters for their votes in the recent election, affirming that the party would follow the lead of the election winners in forming the next government.Addressing the media at Government House following the release of Sunday’s (14 May) election results, Thanakorn conveyed his appreciation for every vote received by the party and its candidates, particularly emphasizing the support from UTN supporters in his hometown of Nakhon Si Thammarat.He acknowledged that losing an election is normal and extended congratulations to the parties that secured more votes than UTN. Thanakorn added that the next cabinet’s composition would depend on the course of action taken by the winners.Thanakorn also revealed that the UTN’s leadership recently convened to discuss the election outcome. He shared that Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha had instructed him to allow the election winners to take the lead in forming the next government. Additionally, Gen Prayut urged him to ensure the efficient functioning of the caretaker government during the remaining three months before the new government’s inauguration.When asked about the possibility of forming a minority government, Thanakorn expressed uncertainty regarding the scenario and indicated his readiness to assume a position in the opposition.He also praised Gen Prayut’s "eight-year quest for the country" as sufficient for establishing a lasting legacy. Thanakorn emphasized Gen Prayut’s non-corrupt political performance throughout his tenure, suggesting that it would be enough for him to be remembered positively by the people.
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EC endorses 10 billion baht budget to alleviate people’s electricity cost burden16 May 2023
BANGKOK (NNT) - The Election Commission (EC) has approved the use of 10 billion baht of the government’s central budget to reduce people’s energy cost burden. The move comes after an earlier pushback that necessitated the Cabinet to re-submit the details for the use of the budget.Election Commissioner Titichet Nutchanart said the Cabinet’s request to use 10.464 billion baht of the fiscal year 2023 central budget has been approved at a meeting of the EC. The budget, which will be used to reduce the electricity cost for the public, will be expended on two measures. The first is an urgent measure to reduce the electricity price before the value-added tax calculation. This will benefit households that use no more than 500 units of electricity per month in the May 2023 billing cycle. 150 baht of reduction will apply for each of the eligible households. The move will alleviate people’s power bills as May is within the peak period for electricity use in Thailand.The second measure involves providing reductions to the electricity charge for households that use no more than 300 units of electricity per month. Households that use 1-150 units of power per month will receive an 89.80 satang per unit discount. Those who use 151-300 units of electricity per month will receive a 64.80 satang per unit discount on the bill. This measure will be implemented over 4 months in the May to August billing cycles.
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