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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs     21 October  2011

Thai Infrastructure Fund planned

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The Thai finance ministry will propose a stock exchange -listed Infrastructure Fund to mobilise public funds to invest in infrastructure projects now that many industrial estates have been devastated by flooding, Finance Minister Thirachai Phuvanatnaranarubala said.

The proposal would be tabled for the cabinet to consider in one to two weeks.

The fund, if approved, would be listed on the Stock Exchange of Thailand. There would be incentives for investors to be exempted from dividends tax. The size of the fund had not yet been fixed, pending consultations with agencies concerned, he said.

Meanwhile, a 500-million-baht fund to help flood victims was set up today. The SET would contribute 250 million baht to the fund and the rest would be from associations such as the Thai Listed Companies Association, and Association of Investment Management Companies.

Mr Thirachai said the 250 million baht contributed by SET would be used to buy water pumps for industrial estates devastated by flooding and build floodwalls so that they could be quickly pumped out and return to operations.

The Finance Ministry would submit a proposal for the prime minister to issue a regulation to require all industrial estates to build concrete flood prevention walls higher than this year's water level.

Insurance companies would be asked to pay claims by companies in the industrial estates hit by the current floods, he said.

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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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