ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
PTT prexy moves on
Prasert Bunsumpun has only six months left in his term as president and chief executive of the PTT Group, Thailand's largest income generator and biggest company by market capitalisation. He will leave the high-profile position that he assumed five years ago and the company he has served for 33 years.
PTT's future strategic plan is one of his priorities as the company faces intensified competition within the industry and future challenges from regional integration under the Asean Economic Community from 2015.
But another vital issue requiring his, and PTT's, attention is the selection of an appropriate successor.
''The new CEO must be hard-working, able to be part of the team and embrace flexible management. He must be not merely good, but rather great and skilled, '' said Mr Prasert.
He is confident a company insider will be selected rather than an outsider, although the selection process is wide open to all who meet the requirements. The company's board will soon set up a screening committee.
''We're not some failed organisation that needs an outsider to rehabilitate us,'' said Mr Prasert. ''How would we answer if the public asked what was wrong with our own human resources and why we failed to cultivate leaders from within?''
Prajya Phinyawat, the chief operating officer for PTT's downstream petroleum business, says the next chief executive must continue to focus on developing the company's own technology to add value to its petroleum and petrochemical products.
''He should be aware that the world's leading national oil and gas firms such as Gazprom, Petrobras and Petronas have their own wells that churn out excess output for export, while our country has only gas in the Gulf of Thailand that is nearly depleted. Developing technology to add value to petroleum and petrochemicals is therefore a must,'' said Mr Prajya.
Mr. Prasert said the new boss must also be skillful in fending off political meddling. ''The new CEO must clearly understand who the real owners of the company are, and they are not some handful of politicians. PTT is majority-owned by the Finance Ministry. It is a national asset with millions of retail shareholders. If the new boss is just here to play political games, then he won't last long,'' he said.
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