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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs        11  May 2011

Thai telecom plan criticized

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Thailand’s draft telecom master plan still lacks substantial content, academics and consumer-protection advocates said yesterday.

Somkiat Tangkitvanich, vice president of the Thailand Development Research Institute, said the draft should include more concrete details so the upcoming National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) could oversee the industry in a practical manner. For example, the master plan should not determine how much of a reduction in telecom service fees that the NBTC could achieve in a certain period, but let prices move according to the market and the technology in the future.

Prawit Leesatapornwongsa, director of the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC)'s Consumer Institute, said the plan should promote the self-regulation of telecom and broadcasting operators.

The NTC should also work closely with the government in drafting the plan, since they have to work together in regulating the telecom industry.

The NTC held a seminar on the draft telecom master plan that it had prepared for the NBTC so that the NBTC does not have to start working from ground zero. However, it is up to the NBTC if it wants to use the NTC's draft.

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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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