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Asean Affairs    4  September  2011


By  David Swartzemtruber

AseanAffairs     4  September 2011

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These were the most newsworthy stories published by Asean Affairs during the week of August 27-September 2.

Malaysian exports led by commodities
Demand for commodities from China and India will remain the main pillar of support for Malaysia's exports in July as in the previous month with the export-reliant manufacturing sector continuing to feel the impact from a drop in sales of consumer electric and electronic (E&E) goods from the United States and Europe.

Philippine hot money flows double
Foreign portfolio investment inflows in the first three weeks of August nearly doubled from a year ago amid investors’ improved risk appetite for emerging assets.

Thai inflation accelerates
Inflation accelerated in August at the fastest pace in 35 months as food and energy prices rose.

New demand pushes rice price
New demand from Nigeria and Indonesia and speculation about aggressive government intervention pushed Thai rice to 1-1/2 year highs this week, while Vietnamese prices began to ease as well-stocked buyers stayed on the sidelines, traders said on Wednesday.

Male bosses dominate Singapore
Men continue to predominantly hold leadership roles in Singapore's private sector, according to the Randstad Workmonitor Report which tracks gender diversity and job trends.

Australian court voids refugee swap
Australia's highest court has ruled that Australia cannot send asylum seekers to Malaysia as part of a new refugee swap deal.

Investment fund likes Philippines
The biggest pension fund in the United States said it hiked by a fourth its investments in the Philippine stock market in the first five months of the year, tracking the global movement of foreign money from developed to emerging markets.

Red shirts receive political appointments
In a move that could be risky, the new Pheu Thai government has appointed a number of persons from the red shirt group to political roles. Following a failure to disperse on May 19 last year, the red shirts staged an arson attack on private and government buildings that cost the Thai economy millions of dollars. More than 90 lives were also lost when the red shirts and Thai soldiers engaged in a cross-fire after the red shirts failed to disperse.

Malaysia FDI surges
Foreign direct investments (FDIs) surged to RM21.3 billion (US$7.2 billion) in the first six months of the year in Malaysia compared with RM12.1bil a year earlier.

Vietnamese banks raise reserves
The State Bank of Viet Nam yesterday raised the foreign currency compulsory reserves ratio for commercial banks by 1 percentage point to 8 percent of total deposits in a move to limit the growing number of new loans being made in US dollars.

KL attracts Singapore investors
Sky-high prices and tighter financing rules are sending increasing numbers of Singaporeans across the Causeway to snap up property.

Philippines to have “single window” customs
The Bureau of Customs said it would complete the interconnection of the National Single Window and electronic to mobile system in two months despite a conflict in warranties.

Tony Tan wins close election
Former deputy prime minister Tony Tan has secured victory after a recount in Singapore's presidential election, with the razor-thin winning margin exposing sharp divisions in the electorate.

Indo central bank holds on rate increase
Indonesia’s central bank prefers not to raise rates, in case it needs to counter a spike in fuel prices or a bubble in auto loans next year, analysts said.

Revised Thai fiscal budget in January
The revised fiscal budget for 2012 is not expected to reach parliament until January, but in the meantime the government has access to 1.035 trillion remaining in the budget for the 2011 fiscal year, which ends September 30.


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on Thailand 2007-2008

•Textiles and Garments Industry

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•Leather and footwear industry

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• Malaysian exports led by commodities
• Philippine hot money flows double
• Thai inflation accelerates
• Academics urge lese majeste overhaul
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Asean Analysis       September  2011

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Asean Stock Watch   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
• 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


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