Sign up | Log in



Home  >>  Daily News  >>  ASEAN ANALYSIS


Asean Affairs   10 June  2011

AEC’s arrival already impacting members

By  David Swartzemtruber

AseanAffairs     10 June 2011

Related Stories

June 9,2011
The road to the AEC has some bumps

June 8,2011
Oil and food hit global economy

June 7,2011
Philippines finds success in outsourcing

June 6,2011
Will labor shortages hinder the AEC?

June 5,2011

June 3,2011
McCain reaches out to Myanmar

Although the arrival of the Asean Economic Community (AEC) is 3.5 years distant, the impact of its arrival is clearly shown in two recent stories out of Thailand.

Thailand produces about 35 billion cigarettes a year, with the state-owned Thailand Tobacco Monopoly holding a market share of 76.8 percent. There are 15 importers including Philip Morris. That company holds a 20.6 percent market share.

The Philippines, where Philip Morris produces its cigarettes, recently won a long-running dispute with Thailand over cigarette import duties. The Philippines filed a complaint with the World Trade Organisation (WTO), accusing Thailand of violating the 1994 General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) regarding valuation methods for customs and value-added taxes on cigarettes imported from the Philip Morris plant in the Philippines. Thailand accused the company of understating the import prices.

Under WTO regulations, a member must abide by the GATT method, in effect the CIF (cost insurance, freight) prices, declared by an importer in calculating customs tax. In November 2010, the WTO ruled in favor of the Philippines.

Thailand now says it will now calculate taxes based on retail prices instead of the ex-factory prices of the Thailand Tobacco Monopoly (TTM) for local cigarettes and CIF (cost, insurance and freight) prices for imported cigarettes. Philip Morris supports that proposal as it believes this will increase transparency in the taxation system.

Thailand now proposes to tax cigarettes The Excise Department is proposing to calculate taxes based on retail prices instead of the ex-factory prices of the Thailand Tobacco Monopoly (TTM) for local cigarettes and CIF (cost, insurance and freight) prices for imported cigarettes.

The point of this episode is that Asean member states need to get their customs regulations in line not only with international standards but with the coming AEC standards. Expect that during the first two years of the AEC, there will be a number of customs difficulties.

Another feature of the AEC is that it will allow the mobility of skilled labor between member states. A recent seminar indicated that the workforce in Thailand might be falling behind in the necessary skills to compete.

Thailand may have an oversupply situation in the mid-level sector from stiff competition from Filipino and Vietnamese workers. Seminar experts said Filipinos were excellent in English, while the Vietnamese were hard-working and patient, implying that Thai workers are deficient in these areas.

"Skills alone are not the crucial factor in making Thai workers superior to Singaporeans or Malaysians - we need to improve the Thai workers' English," a seminar speaker said.

Weerawat Wannasiri, head of the Federation of Private Vocational Schools of Thailand, said establishment of the Asean Vocational College was under way to accommodate the Asean Economic Community in 2015, which will make travel and employment among member countries easier, with higher salaries and better incentives. The frontier of AEC integration will be at customs and skilled workers will face new challenges along with increased opportunities.

The combined gross domestic product of Asean countries currently place the group in ninth place globally. One can expect its ranking to increase in the build up to the AEC in 2015.

Paul A. Ebeling, Jnr

Reach Southeast Asia!
10- Nations, 560- Million Consumers
And $1 -Trillion Market
We are the Voice of Southeast Asia Media Kit
The only Media Dedicated to Southeast Asia Advertising Rates for Magazine
  Online Ad Rates

Comment on this Article. Send them to

Letters that do not contain full contact information cannot be published.
Letters become the property of AseanAffairs and may be republished in any format.
They typically run 150 words or less and may be edited
submit your comment in the box below




1.  Verifier

1. Verifier

For security purposes, we ask that you enter the security code that is shown in the graphic. Please enter the code exactly as it is shown in the graphic.
Your Code
Enter Code

Today's  Stories    10  June  2011 Subsribe Now !
 • Nomura bullish on Indonesia Subcribe: Asean Affairs Global Magazine
• Bank Indonesia holds rate -for now Asean Affairs Premium
• Terrorist suspect rearrested
Research Reports
on Thailand 2007-2008

•Textiles and Garments Industry

•Coffee industry

•Leather and footwear industry

•Shrimp industry

• Philippine exports rise        
• Thailand needs more skilled workers

  • Thai ministry to dilute shares in THAI Airways

  • Vietnam-China sea tensions rise

• Vietnam's busy year for M&A

Asean Analysis    10  June  2011

Advertise Your Brand
• AEC’s arrival already impacting members Sponsor Our Events

Asean Stock Watch    10  June  2011 

• Asean Stock Watch-June 10 p

ASEAN NEWS UPDATES      Updated: 04 January 2011

 • Women Shariah scholars see gender gap closing
• Bank Indonesia may hold key rate as inflation hits 7 percent

• Bursa Malaysia to revamp business rules
• Private property prices hit new high in Singapore
• Bangkok moves on mass transport
• Thai retailers are upbeat
• Rice exports likely to decline
• Vietnamese PM projects 10-year socioeconomic plan


This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More


Home | About Us | Contact Us | Special Feature | Features | News | Magazine | Events | TV | Press Release | Advertise With us

| Terms of Use | Site Map | Privacy Policy  | DISCLAIMER |

Version 5.0
Copyright © 2006-2020 TIME INTERNATIONAL MANAGEMENT ENTERPRISES CO., LTD. All rights reserved.
Bangkok, Thailand