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Japan, Thailand ties get boost

Posted by Nuttapon_S On January - 18 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

PM Abe visits, reaffirms Dawei port investment

Japan has reaffirmed its policy to strengthen economic cooperation with Thailand including joining Bangkok and Myanmar in developing the Dawei deep-sea port.

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra made the announcement after holding talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at Government House last night.

In addition to the development of the Dawei economic zone in Myanmar, Japan has also reaffirmed its interest in undertaking high-speed railways and the multi-billion-baht water resource management projects in Thailand.

“Thailand and Myanmar would like to see Japan in a tripartite partnership to help develop Dawei as soon as possible,” Ms Yingluck said.

Mr Abe and his wife, Akie, Thursday began a two-day official visit to Bangkok to strengthen the relationship between the two countries.

The Japanese prime minister will leave for Indonesia Friday morning for the last leg of his three-nation Asean tour which also includes Vietnam.

Mr Abe is the first Japanese leader to visit Thailand in 10 years. The last visit was by former prime minister Junichiro Koizumi in 2003.

Speaking at the joint press conference, Ms Yingluck said both sides agreed to boost cooperation under the Japan-Thailand Economic Partnership Agreement and liberalise free trade of Thai agricultural products.

Japan is still confident in the Thai economy. Japanese investment levels increased 85 per cent here in the first 11 months of last year.

She said the two leaders also discussed the possibility of more investments by Japanese small, medium and large enterprises in green technology, energy, aviation and auto industries in Thailand.

Mr Abe’s visit to Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia after his election showed that Japan attached high importance to Thailand and Asean.

The Asean-Japan Dialogue Partnership will celebrate its 40th anniversary this year, Ms Yingluck said. She said she believed that under the leadership of Mr Abe, Japan’s economy would recover soon.

Thailand and Japan also agreed to jointly develop human resources to prepare for Asean to become one community in 2015 because Japan still needed skilled labour from this region.

Ms Yingluck said Thailand and Japan shared the view that both countries could contribute to help develop peace in the region.

She called on Japan and China to resolve their territorial conflict in the South China Sea through peaceful talks.

Mr Abe said Japan and Thailand will put greater effort into developing their strategic partnership.

Japan is ready to help develop infrastructure in Thailand, said Mr Abe, adding Japan has high hopes for the Thai and Asean leadership in helping develop the region.

Immediately after his arrival Thursday, Mr Abe visited the Thai-Nichi Institute of Technology.

He was then granted an audience with His Majesty the King at Siriraj Hospital before holding talks with Ms Yingluck.

Thailand is currently the sixth largest trading partner of Japan. Trade volume between the two countries reached 2.11 trillion baht during the first 11 months of 2012.

Japan is also Thailand’s biggest source of foreign direct investment, with a total amount of 312 billion baht or 63 per cent of total foreign direct investment in Thailand.

Japanese tourists rank third in terms of numbers after Malaysian and Chinese. More than 1.2 million Japanse visited Thailand in 2012 — a 62 per cent increase on the previous year, while more than 210,000 Thais visited Japan in the same year.

Ms Yingluck also expressed sympathy to the families of Japanese workers who were kidnapped and hostage at a gas field in Algeria.

The government condemned all kinds of terrorism and called for the terrorists to release the hostages immediately without conditions.

BANGKOK, Jan 17 – Thai and high-level Japanese are scheduled to hold bilateral talks this evening – the highlight of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s two-day visit to Bangkok.
The Japanese embassy here said Mr Abe’s Southeast Asian trip which includes Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia is to enhance partnership between Japan and the region, and to lay groundwork for the Japan-ASEAN commemorative summit in Tokyo in December.
Describing Thailand as a gateway to Asia and a hub of Japanese corporate activities, the embassy said the two countries share fundamental values and economic interests.
Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra will lead the Thai team for this evening’s talks with the Japanese delegation, to be headed by Mr Abe who arrives Bangkok at 11.30 am today.
The Thai Board of Investment (BoI) said the stronger Japanese currency has compelled investors, particularly small- and medium-sized businesses, to invest overseas including Thailand.
Between 1970 and 2012, Japanese investors applied for investment promotional privileges for 7,302 projects with a combined investment of Bt2.7 trillion – about one-fourth of all foreign investment in Thailand making it the country’s biggest overseas investor.
Viboon Kromadit, Director and Chief Operating Officer of Amata Corporation PCL, said Mr Abe’s visit will boost the morale of Japanese investors in Thailand.
Nearly 60 per cent of foreign industries in Amata Industrial Estate are from Japan, he said, adding that more Japanese industrialists will relocate their investment to Thailand after the country’s current conflict with China. (MCOT online news)

PM launches Bangkok election campaign

Posted by Nuttapon_S On January - 16 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS
BANGKOK, Jan 16 – Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra kicked off the city’s gubernatorial election campaign for candidate Pongsapat Pongcharoen at a suburban fresh market today, promising to imprint smiles on the faces of Bangkok people.
Ms Yingluck, accompanied by Pheu Thai Party executives, was welcomed by vendors and shoppers, some of whom presented her with flowers and had photos taken with her.
Metropolitan police commander Kamronvit Toopkrachang was available to facilitate the campaign activity while Sudarat Keyuraphan, Pol Gen Pongsapat’s strong rival for the candidacy, failed to show up.
Ms Yingluck highlighted the Pheu Thai’s campaign strategy of seamless cooperation between the national and city administrations if Gen Pongsapat is elected to run the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration.
Describing the Pheu Thai’s policy as realistic and applicable, the premier asked Bangkok’s people to give her party a chance, adding that candidates to run as Gen Pongsapat’s prospective deputies will be unveiled soon.
Asked if Gen Pongsapat will succeed as a fresh politician like her, Ms Yingluck said it depends on the people’s decision.
Candidate Pongsapat said the party’s full policy will be announced on Jan 21 after he officially registers his candidacy for the polls as required by the Election Commission (EC).
On allegations that he stole a radio while studying in the US, the former deputy national police chief said he is scheduled to meet with the EC Bangkok commission later today to discuss campaign procedures during which he will produce evidence relating to the charge.
Misinformation and misunderstandings concerning the allegations should be clarified to avoid legal action in the future, he said. (MCOT online news)

Kids reject careers in politics

Posted by arnon_k On January - 12 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

Children have little interest in a career in politics and are calling on adults to stop quarrelling and unite, a poll published yesterday by the Research Centre at Bangkok University showed.

The poll surveyed 1,115 children aged six to 14 in Bangkok and its surrounding provinces between Tuesday and Thursday to mark Children’s Day today.

The Bangkok Poll asked respondents which career path they would like to take. About 16% of them said they wanted to be doctors, 14.1% wanted to be teachers, and 11.5% wanted to be police officers , while only 4.2% wanted to get involved with politics.

Asked what they wanted to tell adults, 33.6% said they wanted adults to stop quarrelling with one another and turn to unite in helping each other. About 23% said adults must strive to be honest.

Asked what attributes a good person should have, 38% named kindness and generosity, 36.4% said honesty, and 15% said diligence and endurance.

Tablet computers were the most popular gifts children wanted to receive from Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra (19.7%), followed by a smartphone (15.3%), a big doll (12.2%), a notebook computer (7.2%) and a bicycle (5.9%).

Asked to rank places they would like to visit, children most wanted to go to Siam Park and DreamWorld (26.9%), followed by the beach (25.5%), the zoo (15.6%) and temples (12.9%).

The motto for this year’s Children’s Day given by the prime minister was: “Keep disciplined, be keen on acquiring knowledge, enhance wisdom, and integrate Thailand with Asean.”

Children said that being keen on acquiring knowledge was the easiest to achieve (46.9%), followed by keeping disciplined (28.8%), integrating Thailand with Asean (13.7%) and enhancing wisdom (8.9%).