Saturday, December 16, 2017
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Thailand is staging the “Digital Thailand Big Bang 2017” exhibition under the concept of Digital Transformation Thailand.

The government says now marks the beginning of the implementation part of its efforts to reform economy and society into Thailand 4.0.

The exhibition feature the latest technological innovations, and brings together more than 120 companies engaged in digital technology that are sharing their insights.

The event continues until September 24 at Challenger Hall 1-2 at Impact in Muang Thong Thani.

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said: “Digital Thailand Big Bang 2017 is the milestone event which propels the whole nation into the digital era.

“It is organised by the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society (MDES), Digital Economy Promotion Agency (DEPA) and co-organised by the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC).

The event will display the processes to transform the country to Thailand 4.0, a new engine of growth that will drive the economy forward through high-tech industries and innovations.

In 2017, the government has maximised the use of digital technology in three aspects;

  1. To create new opportunities for economic growth and improve the delivery of government services for its people: the Pracha Rat Internet, to bridge a digital gap by providing high speed Internet accessibility to 74,700 communities in Thailand within a year.

The government is aiming to create innovations through the application of technology, such as e-commerce to enhance the capabilities so that the people can run their businesses online; e-health to enable swift exchange of information between experts and individual units located across the nation; e-education to offer numerous possibilities for distance learning to people, including children, senior citizens and underprivileged; e-agriculture to change the country’s traditional farming to smart farming and to help Thai farmers to become entrepreneurs and e-service to serve as a central information center to facilitate people in obtaining public services.

  1. Ranges of digital innovations: Digital Park Thailand spanning over 600 rai will be built in Sri Racha, Chon Buri as the centre of the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC); support for the Internet of Things (IoT) to local tech start-ups; and smart city initiatives. Digital Park and the development of smart cities will help improve quality of life and the local environment while enabling the country to use resources more efficiently.
  2. Global Connectivity: This is to facilitate international collaboration through digital platforms. The government is in the process of setting up a one-stop service for permits relating to setting up a business. To improve the ease of doing business, cooperation with global partners will be made to support Thai startups to form their businesses and create a cybersecurity.

Celebrities caught using drugs face uncertain fate

Posted by pakin On September - 21 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

FORMER MISS TEEN THAILAND and now-disgraced actress Amelia Jacobs, who was arrested on drug-related charges early on Tuesday morning, is not the first – and will not be the last – Thai star who has seen a bright future threatened by involvement with illegal drugs.

Indeed, the police blotter is littered with examples of celebrities being caught with narcotics, ending in lengthy jail sentences and hefty fines, although in some cases, canny public relations and efforts to rehabilitate have saved careers that seemed beyond repair.

Just this last March, the Supreme Court upheld a verdict against Chatchaya Ramos, or “Yuyee”, formerly a popular model, sentencing her to 15 years and three months in jail for smuggling cocaine into the country in November 2012.

During a search at Don Mueang International Airport, authorities found 251 milligrams of cocaine concealed in her suitcase. In addition to the jail sentence, she was also fined Bt1.5 million.

However, the trail of careers in peril reaches back years. In 2013, the young actress Sutatta “Punpun” Udomsilp saw all of her contracts suspended after photos of her using meth were leaked to the public and her family admitted that she used drugs.

However, the young celebrity stopped using drugs before returning to act in movies again and regaining her popularity as a teen idol.

In another particularly high-profile case in December 2011, renowned rockstar Seksan “Sek Loso” Sukpimai came out to admit that he used “ice” after his estranged wife at the time, Wiphakorn Sookpimay, posted on Facebook photos of him consuming drugs.

He too was able to restore his image after spending months in rehabilitation and then returning to the music arena where he has founded and managed many related businesses. He also divorced Wiphakorn.

In March the previous year, the once-rising star Athip Nana, or “Ball”, was arrested after police found him in possession of marijuana and cocaine.

He was sentenced to one year and three months in jail, fined Bt12,000 and ordered to enter rehab. However, his sentence was suspended for two years.

In the same year, a female comedian known as Nok Choenyim was arrested for trying to smuggle 560 milligrams of “ice”, 580 milligrams of marijuana and drug paraphernalia from Cambodia to Thailand. It was the second time she was charged for such an offence.

Going all the way back to 2004, the popular young singer Joyce Triumph Kingdoms and her boyfriend were arrested and charged with possession of 4,000 “yaba” amphetamine tablets with intent to sell.

 

FRESNO, CALIFORNIA – Relatives of two exchange students from Thailand who were killed in California are planning funeral ceremonies after their bodies were pulled from a mangled rental car lodged on boulders in the middle of a river, a Thai diplomat said on Tuesday.

A recovery team reclaimed the two bodies on Friday from the car in the Kings River near Fresno, more than a month after it careened down a cliff on July 26.

Relatives of the two victims endured weeks of waiting before the team felt it was safe to enter the dangerous rapids deep in a gorge.

“It was agonising for them,” said Tanee Sangrat, consul at the Consulate-General in Los Angeles. The relatives have come to “accept the fates of their loved ones,” he said.

The Fresno County Sheriff’s Office used a helicopter to lower the recovery team into the river. They used a hand wench to pull the car to the riverbank and free the bodies.

Crime scene analysts used fingerprints to confirm that the victims were Pakapol Chairatnathrongporn, 28, and his friend Thiwadee Saengsuriyarit, 24.

They were students at the University of South Florida and were visiting Kings Canyon National Park in the Sierra Nevada when their car crashed through a guardrail and plunged into the river.

The story has gripped Thailand, Mr Tanee said.

Authorities have not yet released the cause of death. Fresno officials turned over the remains to a funeral home and relatives will have them cremated before a ceremony expected later this week at a temple in North Hollywood, Thai and Fresno County officials said.

Relatives of Thiwadee will take her ashes back to Thailand, while Pakapol’s cremated remains will be scattered in California because “he loved the US.”

Investigators as a result of the recovery effort also found another car submerged nearby that authorities believe was driven by a missing couple from China.

Officials think the second car crashed into the same stretch of river around Aug 6.

Authorities have said it could take weeks for the river’s level to drop enough for them to retrieve that car and determine if anyone is inside.

 

Tillerson to press Thailand on North Korea

Posted by pakin On August - 3 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

WASHINGTON – US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will press Thailand and other Asian countries to take tougher action against North Korea when he visits Bangkok and attends regional meetings in Manila starting this week, a senior US official said on Wednesday.

Tillerson will visit Thailand next Tuesday and then Malaysia. His visit includes a trip to the Philippines this weekend for the start of Asean meetings and the Asean Regional Forum (ARF), which includes North Korea.

Susan Thornton, the acting assistant secretary of state for East Asia, said Tillerson will meet with Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai during his overnight stay in Bangkok Tuesday night. The two met privately in Washington in May.

His visit to Bangkok will be the first by a US secretary of state since the military seized power in the May 22, 2014, coup.

US-Thai relations have warmed this year, after the election of President Donald Trump. President Barack Obama and his secretaries of state – Hillary Clinton and John Kerry – pressured Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and the regime to hold elections and resume democratic rule.

He plans to engage with China’s foreign minister at the meetings of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Manila, but had no plans to meet North Korea’s foreign minister there.

Thornton said Tillerson, who begins his quick Asean tour in Manila on Saturday, will press Thailand for greater cooperation in isolating North Korea and in enforcing UN sanctions over its missile and nuclear weapons programmes. She said Washington wanted to see countries “drastically” reduce their dealings with Pyongyang.

“What we are trying to do is galvanise this pressure and isolate North Korea so it can see what the opportunity cost is over developing these weapons programmes,” she told reporters in a telephone briefing to preview Tillerson’s trip.

During his overnight stay in Bangkok, Mr Tillerson will pay respects to the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej. He is expected to stress the “enduring” US-Thailand partnership, his spokesman said earlier.

Mr Tillerson is intimately familiar with Thailand. As a rising executive on his way to become chief of Exxonmobil, he was president of Esso Exploration and Production Khorat Inc.

Starting in 1996, he directed the ramping up of production in Thailand’s first commercial natural gas field at Nam Phong district of Khon Kaen.

Thailand has diplomatic relations with Pyongyang including full embassies in each other’s capitals.

Thornton said China had taken “significant steps, … frankly unprecedented steps” to increase pressure on its neighbour North Korea, but it could do “a lot more” to step up enforcement of existing sanctions and to impose more.

“We would like to see more action faster and more obvious and quick results, but I think we’re not giving up yet.”

US President Donald Trump on Saturday accused Beijing of doing “nothing” to help on North Korea and pointed to the huge US trade deficit with China.

A senior Trump administration official said on Tuesday that Trump was close to a decision on how to respond to what he considers China’s unfair trade practices and was considering action that could lead to tariffs or other trade restrictions on Chinese goods.

Thornton declined to comment on any possible action but stressed that despite Trump’s tweets, North Korea and the trade issue were not linked in a “transactional,” but “in a sort of philosophical way.”

“Can we work together jointly on the key security challenge facing Northeast Asia, which is the North Korea challenge?” she said. “If we can work together to do that, surely we can have a productive, mutually beneficial economic relationship in which we both enjoy reciprocal and fair access to each other’s markets.”

Thornton said Tillerson would continue to press China on the South China Sea issue while in Asia, where the United State has been pressing for rapid adoption of a code of conduct over competing territorial claims.

She said the United States would “certainly” raise human rights with Philippine President Duterte’s government.

US criticism of Duterte’s bloody war on drugs under Trump’s predecessor Barack Obama damaged relations between the long-standing allies. Duterte has remained defiant, accusing critics of “trivialising” his drug campaign with human rights concerns.

 

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