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MediaWATCH: Tax Up on Alcohol, Fuel Tipped

MediaWATCH: Tax Up on Alcohol, Fuel Tipped

Thursday, May 7, 2009
Phuketwan MediaWATCH

A new daily wrap of Thailand news, with a Phuket perspective. Reports from national and international media, with translations into English from Thai.

Associated Press: The Government approved an excise tax increase on beer and other alcoholic drinks to nine percent from seven percent in a bid to boost revenue. Finance Minister Korn Chatikavanij said the increase of excise taxes on liquor, beer and brandy will be effective from Thursday onwards. The measure is expected to boost income by 6.3 billion baht (US$179 million), which will be used for investment in infrastructure projects. Tax increases on fuel and cigarettes are anticipated.

Bangkok Post: Cabinet has approved the second phase of a Finance Ministry 1.43-trillion-baht economic stimulus plan, aimed at creating jobs for about two million people. Finance Minister Korn Chatikavanij said the state investment projects raise long-term competitive advantages of Thai businesses.

AFP news agency: The Chon Buri provincial governor was transferred yesterday over the protest by red-shirts who shut down the Asean Plus Six summit in Pattaya. Cabinet transferred Suraphon Pongthadsirikul from Chon Buri province to the smaller nearby province of Chachoengsao. A senior government official said on condition of anonymity Mr Suraphon was transferred because he was a ''red governor'''. The Asean Plus Six summit is now scheduled for Phuket in June.

bbc.com A British man has been appointed the new caretaker of an Australian tropical island, a six-month position described as ''the best job in the world''. Ben Southall, 34, a charity fundraiser, emerged from a field of over 34,000 applicants. Mr Southall wll live and report from Hamilton Island, on Queensland's Great Barrier Reef. The process gave a global profile to Australian tourism, which has gone into decline amid the worldwide recession.

Andaman News NBT: From May 6, people in the range of audio coverage from the early tsunami warning towers will hear the national anthem twice a day, every Wednesday. This is an effort to make sure that warning towers are functioning well. Phuket Vice Governor Smith Palawatwichai requests hotel and tourism operators to keep their guests or clients informed of the practice so that they are not surprised or panicked.

The Nation: Public Health announced that three patients quarantined overseas travellers, one a German tourist, had normal cases of flu. Cabinet approved the plan to procure another 10 thermal scanners for border checkpoints. The scanners are already in use at some border crossings, and all major airports.

Daily News: Sales of motorcycles in Thailand have dropped by 16.8 percent on last year, to 366,262 for the first quarter of 2009. A spokeperson for the federation of Thai Automotive Industry said sales could stay slugish for two or three years. Government incentives were needed, he said.

staronline.com: AirAsia says earnings for the first quarter were ''fantastic'' after the company boosted passenger numbers. Earnings for the second quarter were also looking good, chief executive officer Datuk Tony Fernandes told Bloomberg Television. He did not elaborate. AirAsia's first-quarter passenger numbers surged 21 percent year on year while global airline passenger traffic fell 11.1 percent last month, according to the International Air Transport Association.

channelnewsasia.com: Thailand's tourism industry could suffer a revenue drop of 35 percent this year, according to analysts. Dale Lawrence, director of Corporate Communications, Pacific Asia Travel Association, said swine flu was ''potentially another kick in the teeth for tourism, but it isn't yet . . . In the Asia Pacific region, we are very experienced in dealing with it, in the wake of the SARS crisis of 2003. Lessons have been learned." Tourism in Thailand accounts for five per cent of the GDP and employs up to seven per cent of the total workforce.

Thai Rath: Rain can be expected across the south of Thailand because of a large tropical storm over the South China Sea, with the potential to be a typhoon. The storm is heading east, with strong winds stretching as far as the Andaman region. High waves are being forecast.

Asia Times (atimes.com): Shawn W Crispin writes: ''Once-coherent forces are fragmenting in Thailand, promising to complicate standing political alliances while disintegrating others. As Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva strikes new conciliatory poses the emerging realignment could ignite potent new sources of instability and foil his government's strategy to shore up its democratic mandate at new polls next year.''

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Wednesday September 22, 2021
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