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Asean Affairs    25  September  2011


By  David Swartzemtruber

AseanAffairs     25  September 2011

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These were the most newsworthy stories published on Asean Affairs during the week of September 17-23.

S&P delays credit upgrades
Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services on Wednesday said the persistent global uncertainties in advanced economies are delaying the possible upgrade in the credit quality of Asia-Pacific sovereigns.

Solar energy gets hot in Thailand
Suntech Power Holdings, the world's largest solar firm, may invest in a solar cell assembly plant in Thailand along with India and South Africa but is waiting for the new Thai government to clarify its solar energy policy.

SET to be upgraded
The Stock Exchange of Thailand said on Wednesday the Thai capital market was being upgraded from Secondary Emerging Market to Advanced Emerging Market status in the FTSE Global Equity Index Series, according to an announcement by FTSE Group, the global index provider.

Indonesia to be connected
The effort to wire Indonesia will lead to a Rp 30 trillion (US$3.4 billion) investment bonanza in information and communications technology in the next three years, a government official said on Wednesday.

New cyber security centre for Singapore
Singapore will set up a new National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) to boost its capability to counter cyber security threats.

China firm builds Cambodia
Shanghai Construction Group has announced it will complete US$700 million in projects in Cambodia over the next five years, highlighting China’s dominant and still-growing presence in Cambodia.

Pilot shortage may hinder regional growth
The looming shortage of pilots and technicians in the region is hampering the burgeoning civil aviation industry in Asia-Pacific that could account for nearly half of global air travel in the next two decades.

SCG buys stake in Indo company
Siam Cement Group (SCG) of Thailand plans to buy a 30 percent stake in PT Chandra Asri Petrochemical Tbk (CAP), Indonesia's leading integrated petrochemical company, for 13.5 billion baht as part of its Southeast Asian expansion drive.

Natalegawa to assess Myanmar chairmanship bid
Indonesia’s Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa says the opinion of pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi and civil society will influence whether Myanmar is invited to chair the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in 2014.

Jakarta monorail project stopped
After seven years and hundreds of billions of rupiah in public money, Jakarta on Monday finally pulled the plug on the city’s abortive monorail project.

Philippines to join Asean stock link
The Philippines Securities and Exchange Commission has approved the participation of the Philippine Stock Exchange in a Southeast Asian cross-border trading platform.

Thai company goes green
Loxley Plc, one of Thailand's biggest trading conglomerates, is spending about 4 billion baht (US$124.7million) on its five-year renewable energy plan ending in 2014.

Job applicants improve, lack English skills
Employers see improvement in the quality of fresh graduates, but worry the youths are not changing fast enough to catch up with the demands of the working world.

Asia-Pacific stokes freight demand
The Asia-Pacific region is expected to command the highest growth of close to 300 percent in its air freighter fleet in the next 20 years, outpacing the total world demand of 115 percent.

Asian countries now see futility of Internet blockage
Governments around the world have tried for years to control the Internet, dismayed by its potential to incite violence, spread mischief and distribute pornography and dissent.

Vietnam asks for restraint in East Timor Sea
Vietnam has asked parties to refrain from actions that could complicate the situation in the East Sea and instead contribute to maintaining peace and stability in the region, the Vietnamese Foreign Ministry's spokesman Luong Thanh Nghi said Friday.

Indonesia needs to improve logistics
The State Enterprises Ministry says the nation’s logistics sector will need to improve if Indonesia is to be an active part of a regional network scheduled to start four years from now.



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Asean Analysis              25  September  2011

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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
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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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