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Asean Affairs   24  July  2011


By  David Swartzemtruber

AseanAffairs     24 July 2011

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These were the most important stories published by Asean Affairs during the week of July 16-July 25.

US-ASEAN Business Council meets in Malaysia
The US-ASEAN Business Council concluded a two-day Senior Executive Business Mission on Thursday with its largest delegation to Malaysia in more than a decade.

Thailand needs change to compete
Reforms in strategic sectors and education are needed for Thailand to maintain competitiveness with other regional economies, as the new government's policies threaten to make the country less attractive to foreign investors, say business leaders.

Energy firms reject Indo “new” deals
Oil and gas producers on Thursday rejected calls to renegotiate their contract deals, saying that their existing agreements must be respected.

South China Sea agreement reached
In a milestone agreement, China and Asean on Wednesday agreed on a preliminary set of guidelines to allow dialogue and cooperation in the disputed South China Sea.

Foreign business makes Aquino wish list
Before President Benigno Aquino 3rd’s second State of the Nation Address, foreign business executives praised efforts to combat corruption in his first year in office, but admitted that a great deal of work remains to attract long-term investments into the Philippines.

Pheu Thai wage policy could kill FDI
Thailand may lose as much as 100 billion baht (US$3.4 billion) per year in foreign direct investment (FDI) if the Pheu Thai Party moves ahead with its promise to increase the minimum wage to 300 baht per day nationwide, says the Thai Chamber of Commerce.

Arrival of AEC poses challenges
The advent of the Asean Economic Community in 2015 will prompt Asian businesses to seek more interim management services to stay competitive, says Martin Schneider, the chairman and CEO of Brainforce AG.

ICJ orders demilitarized zone in border dispute
The UN's highest court has ordered Thailand and Cambodia to immediately withdraw their troops from a disputed area around an ancient temple on the border between the two Asian neighbours.

Yudhoyono wants energy conservation
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono led a meeting on food stock and fuel efficiency on Monday.

Poll: No Thaksin meddling in Cabinet selection
Most Thais do not want fugitive former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra to dominate or interfere in the formation of the new Cabinet, according to an ABAC poll released on Sunday.

Dwindling rice surplus may prompt price surge
A large rice surplus is forecast to shrink by the end of the decade if more farmland in top exporting nations is put to industrial use and weather conditions worsen, keeping prices high as a growing world population boosts demand.

Indonesia considers banning ore exports
The Indonesian government is drafting a mining regulation that in the next three years could see the export of raw minerals banned, a senior minister has said.

Thailand should reduce income gap
Economists are advising the new government to focus more on income distribution, as it is an efficient way to strengthen the country's economic fundamentals.

Thai exchange to meet international standards
The Stock Exchange of Thailand plans to amend its regulations on capital securities trading to be in accord with international standards. The SET expects the amended rules will come into effect in July 2012.

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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


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