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Political turmoil keeps investors off Thai bourse


November 9, 2008

Political turmoil keeps investors off Thai bourse

Foreign investors are reluctant to invest in the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) due to political uncertainty in Thailand, national news agency TNA quoted Anon Sirisaengthaksin, the chief execitive officer of PTT Exploration
& Production (PTTEP), the exploration arm of Thailand's former petroleum state enterprise, as saying Saturday.

Anon, who was on roadshows to promote the bourse in Singapore and Dubai, said investors in those countries would like to invest on the Thai bourse, but they remain reluctant because they do not know whether they can repatriate money from Thailand if there is a political change in the kingdom.

He was optimistic that investors will return to SET if the political conflict ends although the market is being affected by the global financial meltdown.

Regarind declining oil prices in a world market in which futures in Brent crude retreated to $58 per barrel, its lowest in the past 21 months due to worries over the global economy, the CEO said he believed the crude price would not drop much further due to high production costs, while at the same tme the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) plans to issue more measures to prevent prices from falling further.

OPEC is expected to reduce its crude production to shore up prices after having recently cut production by 1.5 million barrels daily, he added.

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