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|11-01-2012, 10:15 AM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Cabinet okays B2.27 trillion in spending-Infrastructure, flood rehab work is priority
Bangkok Post : Cabinet okays B2.27 trillion in spending
Cabinet okays B2.27 trillion in spending
Infrastructure, flood rehab work is priority
The projects, which would be launched starting this year through to 2016, include new inter-city road links, high-speed train networks, urban mass transit systems, as well as marine, air transport and telecommunication development.
The cabinet also endorsed four executive decrees to enable it to borrow 400 billion baht to pay for water management projects and an insurance fund to restore investors confidence.
The approved decrees are:
- An executive decree to transfer the interest-payment burden on a 1.14-trillion-baht debt left over from the 1997 crisis from the Finance Ministry to the Financial Institutions Development Fund (FIDF), an institution set up under the Bank of Thailand to manage the bank crises.
- An executive decree to seek 350 billion baht in loans for water management projects and flood restoration and rehabilitation work.
- An executive decree to set up a 50-billion-baht fund to offer flood insurance to the business sector.
- An executive decree to amend central bank regulations to extend 300 billion baht in soft loans to financial institutions.
The endorsements are aimed at clearing the way for the government to borrow funds for water management projects and restore confidence in the country, said Council of State secretary-general Atchaporn Jaruchinda.
Deputy Prime Minister Kittiratt Na-Ranong said that under the debt-transfer decree, the FIDF would be authorised to collect fees of up to 1% of the deposit base from local banks to generate cash to make interest payments on the debt.
However, Mr Kittiratt said the fees would not be more than the 0.4% fee currently collected by Deposit Protection Agency (DPA).
Finance Minister Thirachai Phuvanatnaranubala said the new fees would not affect local banks because they would benefit from a government policy that will cut the corporate tax rate to 23% from 30%.
The central bank is likely to earn about 20 billion baht from its currency management activities this year.
Mr Kittiratt said the government expected to sell 400 billion baht in bonds before June 2013 to raise funds for long term water management projects _ 350 billion baht for water management and 50 billion baht for an insurance fund to help restore confidence among insurance companies so they will continue selling policies to industrial firms in flood-prone areas.
Of the 350 billion baht investment, 300 billion baht will be used for water management projects along the Chao Phraya river basin, 40 billion baht will be slated for projects on 17 related river basins, and 10 billion baht will be used for related infrastructure.
Details of the long-term projects will be presented to investors on Jan 14.
Mr Kittiratt also said that of 17 billion baht in short-term flood prevention plans, about 12.6 billion will be implemented this year and the rest next year.
He reiterated that borrowing 400 billion will not affect to the country's fiscal discipline.
The national debt was 4.27 trillion baht as of Sept 30, 2011, the end of the last fiscal year, accounting for 40.2 % of gross domestic product. Adding 400 billion baht in debt is projected to increase the public debt to 43% of GDP.
Mr Kittiratt said the transfer of the debt to the FIDF would help ease the government's fiscal burden.
"Slavery is the daughter of darkness; an ignorant people is the blind instrument of its own destruction; ambition and intrigue take advantage of the credulity and inexperience of men who have no political, economic or civil knowledge. They mistake pure illusion for reality, license for freedom, treason for patriotism, vengeance for justice."-Simón Bolívar
Last edited by StrontiumDog : 11-01-2012 at 10:22 AM.
|11-01-2012, 10:08 PM||#2 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Japan, Thailand to jointly aid flooded businesses | CanadianBusiness.com
Japan, Thailand to jointly aid flooded businesses
January 11, 2012
BANGKOK (AP) — Thailand and its biggest foreign investor, Japan, agreed Wednesday to jointly help businesses of both countries damaged by major flooding in the Southeast Asian nation last year.
The measures include dispatching experts to damaged facilities, exempting import duties on machinery and parts, continuing to allow workers from closed Japanese-owned facilities in Thailand to work in Japan, and giving financial support to flood-affected Japanese companies in Thailand.
Japan's Trade and Industry Minister Yukio Edano discussed the initiatives during a visit with Thai Commerce Minister Kittirat Na-Ranong in Bangkok.
About 300 out of 1,200 Japanese companies formally registered in Thailand were affected by the country's worst flooding in half a century, according to the ministers. Sixty-five of Thailand's 77 provinces were affected by the monthslong flooding, which took more than 800 lives.
Economic damage was estimated at more than 200 billion baht ($6.3 billion). Especially hard hit were industrial estates near Bangkok, where many Japanese companies, including automakers such as Honda, have factories. Japanese companies complained they were not clearly warned of the risks as the floodwaters poured downstream from the north.
"The Japanese private sector intend to continue their investment in Thailand, but they are also keeping an eye on assistance and flood-prevention measures from the Thai government," Edano told reporters.
Kittirat said the Thai government planned to invest 35 billion baht ($1.1 billion) to flood-prevention schemes and to set up an insurance fund worth at least 50 billion baht ($1.57 billion) to help boost Japanese investors' confidence.
PM assures Japan of Thai govt support for Japanese entrepreneurs
วันพุธ ที่ 11 ม.ค. 2555
BANGKOK, Jan 11 --Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra on Wednesday reassured Japan’s visiting Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Yukio Edano that Thailand would complete its rehabilitation of flood-damaged infrastructure within six months.
She also told the Japanese minister that the government has prepared a credit line of US$1.2 million for Japanese entrepreneurs and investors whose factories have been impacted by the flood crisis last year.
Ms Yingluck welcomed Mr Edano at Government House Wednesday afternoon as he formally thanked Thailand for extending assistance to Japanese victims of the massive earthquake and tsunami of March 11 last year.
The Japanese minister also expressed sympathy for Thailand’s flood victims and asked about rehabilitation measures for the industrial sector and the international business community which operate their businesses in Thailand.
Thailand's plan for economic revival was important for the entire region and was in the spotlight by many countries worldwide, he said.
The Japanese minister advised that Thailand should put comprehensive flood-prevention measures in place in the future.
Ms Yingluck took the opportunity to thank Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda, government and people for helping Thailand during its hardships in the form of financial assistance, relief supplies and experts.
The flood crisis caused extensive damage, but the country's strong economic fundamentals as well as helping hands from all parties have helped Thailand get back to its feet quickly, the Thai premier said.
The government targeted achieving gross domestic product (GDP) growth at 4-5 per cent and its post-flood revival plan has focused on industry and investment, she said.
Thailand has prepared a credit line of US$1.2 million for Japanese investors who were affected by the flood, Ms Yingluck said, adding that damaged infrastructure, including roads and hospitals, would be returned to normal within six months.
Other measures include tax exemption for imported machinery, and fast tracks for experts on flood prevention who would facilitate quick revival, said the premier.
As for short term water management measures, Ms Yingluck said her government will invest Bt120 billion this year to improve flood-prevention dykes and dams while some Bt300 billion would be spent for sustainable water management programme to deal with floods in the future. (MCOT online news)
|15-01-2012, 06:38 PM||#5 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Bangkok Post : Flood mitigation plan 'Unlikely to be in place in three years'
Flood mitigation plan 'Unlikely to be in place in three years'
The long-term dam projects are in the Yom and Nan basins in the North and Sakae Krang and Pasak basins in the lower North, according to the plan seen by the Bangkok Post Sunday.
But the much-publicised multi-billion baht plan to manage and control water resources and flooding will not be in place in three years as promised, a source close to the project says.
Without feasibility studies, which could take up to two years, it is impossible to predict what to do and where to start.
The source from the Strategic Formulation Committee for Water Resources Management (SCWRM), which is drawing up the master plan, said details of the government's initiatives have begun circulating amid outcries from environmentalists and villagers.
The cabinet on Jan 10 backed the borrowing of 350 billion baht to pay for the water management projects. Finance Minister Thirachai Phuvanatnaranubala said 300 billion baht would be allocated for water management projects along the Chao Phraya river basin, 40 billion baht for 17 related river basins, and 10 billion baht for related infrastructure.
The master plan gives no details of other dam projects, however Kaeng Sua Tan and Mae Wong are given as examples of possible constructions.
The draft says feasibility studies should take one or two years to complete, with preparations carried out in the second year.
Locals and environmentalists are especially incensed about the controversial Kaeng Sua Ten dam planned for the Yom River, the last undeveloped tributary of the Chao Phraya.
The SCWRM source said the report was preliminary and more study was needed on specific projects.
But it would be impossible for the plan to be ready within three years as projected by some government figures.
"It's not going to be easy [to put the plan into practice]," he said. "It will take time, and need human resources and money. As long as we don't have feasibility studies, we won't know what to do next."
The government will fund the water management projects by selling bonds before June 2013. Mr Thirachai said that of 17 billion baht ear-marked for short-term flood prevention plans, about 12.6 billion baht will be spent this year and the rest next year.
The SCWRM source said all agencies should have flood mitigation plans in place for next year. He said the current network of irrigation canals, water pump stations and sluice gates were not adequate to deal with the flooding problem.
Sometimes these structures obstructed the natural flow of floodwater from the North, he said, citing Khlong Hok Wa canal north of Bangkok as an example.
The master plan is expected to cover immediate flood mitigation and long-term strategies to prevent flooding, especially in the Central Plains, in the next three years.
The long-term strategy comprises five infrastructure improvement and development plans including "forest and ecosystem restoration and conservation", and three non-infrastructure plans.
Pramote Maiklad, former chief of the Royal Irrigation Department, who is a member of the committee, questioned the feasibility of some projects and the timeframe for the master plan.
Mr Pramote said some projects, such as construction of dams on the Chao Phraya tributaries, were probably not feasible as there were no appropriate sites for major dams to be built.
Combined with strong opposition from locals and environmentalists, those projects would become almost impossible, he said.
Mr Pramote said locating major dams on tributaries was unlikely to stem floodwater from reaching the Central Plains as their respective capacities would be too limited.
He said the priority was to develop floodways and water retention areas so the flow could be discharged into the sea as quickly as possible.
He doubted whether floodways could be completed within three years as a large number of people would have to be moved.
At least 10 major flood zones in the Central Plains covering around two million rai were being considered for this.
Mr Pramote said he was worried the urgency of the need to act may soon be forgotten or side-tracked by politics.
Seree Supratid, a lecturer on disaster management at Rangsit University, said the master plan needed to take into account social and environmental aspects.
More importantly, the public should understand that proposed measures were to mitigate the impact of floods, not prevent them happening.
"It's impossible to prevent flooding, even if you have floodways, new retention areas or new reservoirs," he said. "We can never say that flooding will not occur, nor that it will not have an impact if we have those measures."
|15-01-2012, 06:40 PM||#6 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Bangkok Post : Govt seeks to reassure Japanese investors on water management
Govt seeks to reassure Japanese investors on water management
Chukiat Sappaisal, a water expert at Kasetsart University's Faculty of Engineering, said the short-term plan will cost 17 billion baht.
"This investment will be able to help prevent industrial estates from being affected by floods if the amount of water this year is similar to last year," Mr Chukiat yesterday told Japanese investors. They were among 500 participants from different organisations who attended a seminar on "Integrated Water Resources Management for the Chao Phraya River Basin", jointly held by the Strategic Formulation Committee for Water Resources Management (SCWRM) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (Jica).
Mr Chukiat said apart from flood measures at industrial estates, the short-term plan will include more effective water management tools, including sluice gate management along the irrigation system.
Seven industrial estates in Pathum Thani and Ayutthaya provinces were badly hit by floodwater during last year's crisis.
The government set up the SCWRM, chaired by Deputy Prime Minister and Commerce Minister Kittiratt Na-Ranong, to draw up short and long-term water management plans.
Last month, the cabinet agreed to raise 350 billion baht to create basic infrastructure for long-term water management.
Mr Kittiratt, who attended the seminar, said it was necessary to spend that much because of the economic loss Thailand faces from the flood crisis.
"We need to invest not only to protect economic zones, but also people. We can't evaluate the cost of losses by the poor from the flood," he said.
Mr Kittiratt said the 17 billion baht for short-term plans this year will come from the fiscal year budget while 350 billion baht for long-term projects will come from loans.
Japanese Ambassador Seiji Kojima said the master plan on water management, especially flood prevention, will be a significant step for the country to review and regain trust among international investors.
He said Japan and the Thai government would work together on various things, including updating Chao Praya River basin water management.
"We received kind support from Thai people during the recent earthquake and tsunami. This is why Japanese people will do something in return for Thai people."
Mr Kojima thanked the government for helping to limit the impact on Japanese firms from the floods.
Kimio Takeya, a senior adviser to Jica, said a mix of structural and non-structural measures is needed to reduce flood impacts. Investment alone on structural measures, including dams, is not enough as climate variability is effecting water management.
|15-01-2012, 09:49 PM||#7 (permalink)|
ding ding ding
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|16-01-2012, 09:26 AM||#8 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Bangkok Post : Cabinet OKs 128 projects for the North
Cabinet OKs 128 projects for the North
The cabinet agreed to allocate nearly 400 billion baht in total to projects in the North, including the railway development, other public transport systems and flood prevention schemes, deputy Prime Minister Kittiratt Na-Ranong said after the two-day cabinet meeting in Chiang Mai, which ended yesterday.
The high-speed railway has already made some progress. Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra last last year signed an agreement with China's Vice-President Xi Jingping for China to help develop the 745km project.
The state agencies involved in the railway and other infrastructure development projects have been told to work out their budgets, Mr Kittiratt said.
Other approved projects included post-flood infrastructure repairs and developments worth 15 billion baht, said government spokeswoman Thitima Chaisang. The cabinet also yesterday appointed a new committee to deal with the chronic problems of landless farmers.
The committee will "review all past cabinet resolutions" on the matter to help ensure equality in land use.
Some civic groups and NGOs staged rallies near the meeting venue at the northern office of the central bank and the sports field of the 11th Military Circle to air their problems and ask for help.
The labour union for the electronic parts and electrical appliance sectors called on the government to help more than 1,600 staff laid off when their factories flooded last year.
Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister Yongyuth Wichaidit played down criticism the government was wasting money in organising cabinet meetings upcountry.Meetings at Government House in Bangkok also incur expenses, he said. The mobile cabinet meetings would provide a chance for ministers to visit the public. The government plans to hold a cabinet meeting in Udon Thani on March 18, Mr Yongyuth said.
|18-01-2012, 02:02 AM||#9 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Post-flood funding key task for Kittiratt - The Nation
Post-flood funding key task for Kittiratt
THE NATION January 18, 2012 1:00 am
The main job of Kittiratt Na-Ranong in his new post as finance minister is to secure funding for post-flood reconstruction and other investment projects.
When he was deputy prime minister and commerce minister, Kittiratt worked closely with Virabongsa Ramangkura, chairman of the strategic committee for reconstruction and future development.
He totally supported Virabongsa's move to make use of the country's international reserves to pay off the Bt1.14-trillion debt of the Financial Institutions Development Fund (FIDF), despite strong opposition from Finance Minister Thirachai Phuvanatnaranubala and the central bank.
The two sides finally reached a compromise when Kittiratt agreed to delete a controversial clause out of the emergency decree.
The general public also disapproved of the clause that gave the Cabinet a greater role in asset management of the central bank. Now, the central bank has agreed to amortise the FIDF debt with its profits from market operations and from higher premiums its plans to collect from commercial banks.
Virabongsa yesterday suggested that Kittiratt should sell the government's stakes in PTT and Thai Airways International in order to cut public debt, as the two state enterprises have a combined debt of about Bt900 billion.
Lower public debt would give the government more room to borrow to finance post-flood recovery projects costing about Bt350 billion. The government also needs to run a budget deficit for the next fiscal year to spend more on infrastructure projects.
Kittiratt said the reshuffle would benefit the country and increase the work efficiency of the government.
"I am confident about the premier's decision. There will be some new ministers, while some ministers will have to take more serious jobs," he said.
Deputy Finance Minister Boonsong Teriyapirom will replace Kittiratt at the Commerce Ministry. He has a close relationship with Yaowapa Wongsawat, Thaksin's sister and wife of former prime minister Somchai Wongsawat.
The permanent secretary of the Justice and Labour ministries during the Thaksin Shinawatra administration, Charupong Ruangsuwan, has been named as transport minister.
Charupong, 66, has been a member of the Pheu Thai Party since it was called the People Power Party after his retirement as party secretary-general.
His background in the two ministries will allow him to help the party with budget allocations. The Transport Ministry is handling many mega-projects that are pending Cabinet approval.
Compared with ousted transport minister Sukampol Suwannathat, who party members found hard to reach, party operations now should run more smoothly.
Charupong is also believed to be better able to advance the party's populist policies for sealed roads and other infrastructure projects countrywide.
|21-01-2012, 08:59 AM||#10 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Bangkok Post : Clearing the decks for more debt
Clearing the decks for more debt
The government is cutting public debt by reducing its stakes in state enterprises PTT and Thai Airways, to less than 50%, so the two publicly listed companies will no longer enjoy government enterprise status. At the same time, however, it is embarking on a massive spending programme, which some economists say could endanger fiscal stability.
Its new fondness for debt stands in stark contrast to when the Pheu Thai Party was in opposition.
Then, the party blasted the Abhisit Vejjajiva administration for borrowing to cover budget shortfalls.
The party vowed that if it was elected to office, it would pay off the country's debt so the present generation would not be saddled with public debt.
Now the Pheu Thai Party is in office, it has conveniently forgotten the rhetoric of its opposition days.
The government has decided to borrow large amounts to repair and build infrastructure after the floods, to assure the disaster will not happen again.
When the Yingluck Shinawatra government took power five months ago, public debt was about 4.2 trillion baht, or at 40% of the country's gross domestic product (GDP).
The Finance Ministry has laid out a fiscal framework under which public debt should not exceed 60% of GDP.
It also sets a ceiling for debt servicing at 15% of the annual budget.
The government allocates about 11% of its budget to pay the interest burden on the debt, which is still less than the ministry's ceiling.
The country's GDP is about 10 trillion baht, which means the government can borrow another 2 trillion baht before the limit is reached.
Post Today believes that 2 trillion baht is more than enough to lubricate the economy in normal times.
However, since the floods struck, the government has approved various plans to accelerate spending that may jeopardise the ministry's fiscal framework.
The government's spending plans will take the deficit from 350 billion baht to 400 billion baht.
As there are only about seven months left before the next budget round begins in October, the government will have to take care that the money is spent well, it said.
The government last week issued four emergency decrees empowering the Finance Ministry to borrow money to manage the country's water resources and to implement various projects, to the tune of about 350 billion baht.
One of the emergency decrees establishes the National Disaster Insurance Fund, with seed money of 50 billion baht.
The government this week also approved plans to revive and build infrastructure and logistics to the tune of 2.27 trillion baht, with the private sector chipping in about 1 trillion baht.
The government will need to borrow about 1.27 trillion baht.
For next year's budget, the government plans to continue running a deficit of no less than 400 billion baht to stimulate the economy.
Suchart Thadathamrongvej, a former finance minister in the Somchai Wongsawat government, and newly appointed education minister in the government cabinet reshuffle this week, remarked: "The government will not borrow excessively and the country will grow faster if more money is invested. Worrying too much about a fiscal deficit and adopting austerity measures will stagnate the country's economy."
Mr Suchart is a key man in Pheu Thai's economic team.
Post Today said that judging from the government's spending and borrowing plans, public debt may soon exceed 6 trillion baht, or 60% of GDP, as well as exceeding the 15% debt servicing ceiling set by the ministry.
This has necessitated prompt action in the form of an emergency decree to transfer the Financial Institutions Development Fund's (FIDF) 1.14 trillion baht worth of debt, currently shouldered by the Finance Ministry to the Bank of Thailand.
This will ease the ministry's debt servicing burden by some 65 billion baht a year.
The decree enables the government to immediately lower public debt equivalent to about 10% of GDP, which will give the Yingluck administration more room to service public debt, so payments make up no more than 15% of the budget.
Earlier, the government had planned to issue legislation to empower the government to use the central bank's reserves to gradually pay off the FIDF's 1.12 trillion baht debt incurred during the 1997 financial crisis, but the measure was widely opposed for fear it could jeopardise monetary stability.
The government retreated and last week issued an emergency decree to transfer the debt liability to the central bank as well as empowering the central bank to ask commercial banks to make additional contributions in deposit insurance.
The current rate of 0.4% on deposits will rise to the ceiling rate of 1%, which will go into servicing the FIDF's debt.
The government is trying to reduce its public debt liability further by reducing its stakes in PTT and Thai Airways to less than 50%, so the two publicly listed companies will no longer enjoy government enterprise status.
In that event, the government would not have to guarantee their borrowings, which stand at 1 trillion baht. Public debt would fall by a further 10% of GDP, which would give the government more room to borrow further.
Post Today said the government's attempts to reduce public debt by spinning some debt off to various entities will make it harder to manage the public debt as a whole.
After the 1997 financial crisis, the Chuan Leekpai government combined all public debt from various entities to come under the Finance Ministry's management.
The government believed it could service the public debt more effectively with all debt brought under the ministry's Public Debt Management Office (PDMO).
It seems the Pheu Thai government wants to take us back to the situation which existed before 1997, when debt was spread over many entities, and was harder to scrutinise, and manage.
A PDMO source said while borrowing to invest in infrastructure is necessary, this government is placing too much emphasis on borrowing, which may jeopardise fiscal discipline and compromise debt servicing.
Instead of finding more tax revenues to balance the increased borrowings the government is doing the opposite, reducing corporate tax and embarking on other tax other reduction policies including the First Car and First Home schemes.
The government could increase value-added tax, raise taxes on tobacco and alcohol, land and inheritance taxes, but chooses not to do for fear of hurting the party's financiers and support base.
It is not enough to hope that tax revenues will increase automatically with economic growth, without the need to raise taxes, as this has rarely happened under any government over the past 10 years.
If the increased borrowing is to stimulate the economy, resulting in growth in tax collection revenue to balance the shortfall, the government must invest only in essential infrastructure that will boost competitiveness, the paper argued.
|21-01-2012, 09:01 AM||#11 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Bangkok Post : Abhisit vows to fight executive decrees
Abhisit vows to fight executive decrees
"Once they are published in the Royal Gazette, the Democrat Party will certainly lodge a complaint with the Constitution Court for interpretation. We are confident those executive decrees are unconstitutional," he said yesterday.
Mr Abhisit said the decrees have not been announced in the Royal Gazette and have yet to take effect.
"There are no justified reasons why it is an urgent need [as required by the constitution] for the government to issue the decrees to serve its economic rehabilitation plan or water management plan," Mr Abhisit said.
He also opposed a government plan to fully privatise energy giant PTT Plc and Thai Airways International Plc (THAI) by allowing the Finance Ministry to sell its stakes in the companies.
"The share sales would definitely affect consumers and make the companies more profitable," he said.
Chairman of the Strategic Committee for Reconstruction and Future Development Virabongsa Ramangkura said the planned borrowing of 400 billion baht would definitely not make Thailand suffer a public debt crisis like Greece now and Argentina in the past because the loans would be used to finance infrastructure development.
He said the government plan to sell its holdings in PTT and THAI to the state-controlled Vayupak Fund would end their status as state enterprises and the companies' debts, particularly those of PTT at 700 billion baht, would not be considered as public debt.
"The reduction of public debt would restore investor confidence in the country," he said.
He said he has talked with PTT executives and they agreed with the plan. For THAI, it needs to discuss it with its labour union first.
|23-01-2012, 09:36 PM||#12 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Bangkok Post : PM orders strict use of flood funds
PM orders strict use of flood funds
Ms Yingluck issued the warning at a meeting with permanent secretaries of cabinet ministries at the National Intelligence Agency.
The premier ordered ministries to move quickly on disbursing their allotted budgets from the flood restoration and rehabilitation funds so that proposed projects can get moving and be completed before the rainy season hits in May, Mrs Thitima said.
She stressed all agencies stick to their proposed flood restoration projects as planned, especially those scheduled to take place this month and next month such as the repair of roads and bridges.
‘’If any project which has been scrutinised and found not to have been started within two weeks of being allocated a budget, then the government will rescind the money because it has a restricted amount and wants to see the agencies make the most effective use of it,’’ Mrs Thitima said.
|24-01-2012, 10:25 AM||#13 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Bangkok Post : Thirachai says govt debt data massaged
Thirachai says govt debt data massaged
Kittiratt rejects charge of hoodwinking public
The government may be misleading the public about the country's public debt to further its case to pass four emergency decrees to finance new spending, says former finance minister Thirachai Phuvanatnaranubala.
Mr Thirachai, who was removed from the cabinet in a reshuffle last week, implied that deputy premier Kittiratt Na-Ranong misled the cabinet with the use of economic data to push for the passage of the decrees financing investment of hundreds of billions of baht in new water management infrastructure.
But Mr Kittiratt, who remains deputy prime minister for economic policy in the new cabinet and who is also the new finance minister, dismissed the criticism and expressed personal disappointment with Mr Thirachai.
"Why doesn't [Mr Thirachai] understand? He should. I think I have the right to expect that, given that I have more work than he [did]," Mr Kittiratt told the Bangkok Post.
"Frankly, I don't think it's my job to have to explain this to [Mr Thirachai], the person who is actually directly responsible for this issue."
The war of words lays bare what was a simmering conflict of personalities between the two during the first six months of the Yingluck Shinawatra government.
Mr Thirachai, in a posting yesterday on his personal Facebook page, said the government had argued that current budget restrictions and the level of debt service spending would restrict new investment.
The cabinet earlier this month approved a decree shifting responsibility for 1.14 trillion baht in bailout debt from the 1997 economic crisis to the Financial Institutions Development Fund, a move potentially saving the government up to 65 billion baht a year in interest payments. Three other decrees have also been drafted, including one that will establish a 350 billion baht investment fund for new water management projects. The four decrees are awaiting publication in the Royal Gazette before they take effect.
But Mr Thirachai wrote that the figures used to justify the decrees by Mr Kittiratt are misleading and could potentially result in a conflict with the constitution.
"Mr Kittiratt reported to the cabinet that the debt-service ratio is currently 12% [of budget expenditures], and as a result, urgent action is needed to address the Financial Institutions Development Fund debt otherwise insufficient room would be available in the budget to take out new loans to finance the water management projects," Mr Thirachai wrote.
"I myself have also used the 12% figure to explain the issue in the media. But before I left my post, I received a report from the Public Debt Management Office that the actual debt service figure for fiscal 2012 is 9.33%, not 12% as reported by [Mr Kittiratt] to the cabinet."
Mr Thirachai wrote that under the current budget, 7.36% of budget expenditure is earmarked for interest payments, with another 1.97% allocated for principal repayments. Under the law, debt repayments, both interest and principal payments, are limited to no more than 15% of total annual budget expenditure.
"I have to admit being shocked once I learned of the actual figures, since it means that the rationale for the emergency decrees has been undermined completely," he wrote.
Mr Thirachai noted that the debt service figures stemmed from the National Economic and Social Development Board (NESDB), the agency responsible for collating economic data and which reports directly to Mr Kittiratt.
"As [Mr Kittiratt] now oversees both the NESDB and the Public Debt Management Office, I hope that he studies the figures and how they are collated well, so that the correct data is used to comply with constitutional requirements."
But Mr Kittiratt said Mr Thirachai's concerns were misplaced, arguing that the debt service figure of 9.33% of total spending is an adjusted figure based on the assumption that the four decrees are approved.
Otherwise, debt service obligations under the 2012 budget would reach 12% of total spending, on par with last year, he said.
Chakkrit Parapuntakul, the director-general of the Finance Ministry's Public Debt Management Office, said current debt service obligations under the 2012 budget was earmarked at 9.33% of total spending. The debt service ratio had fallen as the previous government, under the 2011 budget, pre-paid 42 billion baht worth of debt using funds in the treasury accounts, he said.
"Without these payments, then yes, the actual ratio for the current year would be around 12%," Mr Chakkrit said, adding that since 2002, debt service spending had averaged around 11-12% of total annual budget expenditures per year.
He said, however, that actual repayment of the public debt was relatively small. In fiscal 2011, 8% of budget spending was earmarked for principal debt payments, but only 0.5% was made, with maturing debt renewed into new debt.
Under the 2012 budget, principal payments have been earmarked at just one billion baht, a miniscule fraction of the 2.38 trillion baht budget overall.
In any case, the debate over debt spending and the budget highlights the challenges faced by policymakers in financing new investment programmes.
Somphob Manarungsan, an economist and rector of the Panyapiwat Institute of Technology, said current expenditures, which include civil service salaries and debt service payments, account for more than 80% of the total budget, resulting in little remaining for future investment programmes.
"The key question when considering new government debt is whether the debt is used productively or not," he said.
"Large infrastructure projects are costly and, as of now, we have yet to see a clear investment blueprint. Another concern is that the government needs quite a bit of social capital as well to push these investments, such that the public can be reassured the projects will be run transparently and with good governance."
|24-01-2012, 10:27 AM||#14 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Thai-ASEAN News Network - PM Explains Draft Budget Bill to Parliament
PM Explains Draft Budget Bill to Parliament
UPDATE : 24 January 2012
The prime minister has assured senators that the government's spending of the central budget on the flood rehabilitation and prevention projects will be transparent and efficient.
During yesterday's senate meeting on the draft bill on the government's spending of 2.4 trillion baht, several senators raised concerns that the government's central fund of 400 billion baht may be abused for politicians' personal gain.
Some senators worried that the allocation of the 120 billion baht flood-prevention measures may create diffiiculties in monitoring the government's spending and lead to corruption.
They suggested the government implement additional measures to monitor the transparency of spending in the flood prevention and recovery projects funded by the 350 billion baht-loan decree.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra said the budget for each ministry has been cut by 10 percent for devotion to financial assistance for flood victims.
Yingluck maintained the 2012 budget will be spent efficiently and transparently.
She said the central fund will be divided into two parts. One will be for rehabilitation and the other for construction the flood-prevention system.
Yingluck added she is prepared to adopt suggestions from the senators for the management of the budget.
|26-01-2012, 09:59 AM||#15 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Kittiratt's 'figures are wrong' | Bangkok Post: news
Kittiratt's 'figures are wrong'
Thirachai reiterates debt shift not needed
Mr Thirachai, who left the cabinet last week, wrote on his personal Facebook page that Kittiratt Na-Ranong, the deputy premier and new finance minister, was plainly mistaken in his use of financial data to justify the decree.
"My purpose is only to give the right information, not to throw a bomb [to the government] or because I am bitter. My concern is for the country, and I feel that the public should know the truth," Mr Thirachai wrote.
The government wants to shift responsibility for 1.14 trillion baht in bailout debt to the Financial Institutions Development Fund (FIDF), freeing up some 65 billion baht in funds from the annual budget. An emergency decree calling for the transfer has been approved and is awaiting publication in the Royal Gazette before taking effect.
Mr Kittiratt has argued that the transfer is necessary to free up room in the budget to take out new loans to help finance 350 billion baht in planned water management projects.
Under the law, the government must maintain debt service payments below 15% of total budget spending if it is to raise new debt. Mr Kittiratt, in a briefing to the cabinet earlier this month, said the debt service level under the current 2012 budget was 12% of total spending, leaving little room for new debt obligations unless the FIDF debt was shifted.
But Mr Thirachai says the debt service ratio is actually 9.33% of total spending, meaning that room exists for new borrowing without transferring the FIDF obligations.
He said Mr Kittiratt was mistaken in assuming the 9.33% figure represented the debt ratio after the transfer.
"Interest payments for the FIDF debt has been set at 68.424 billion baht under the current budget, or 2.87% of total spending," Mr Thirachai said.
"Looking through the budget that only just passed parliament, we see that 68.424 billion baht is earmarked for FIDF debt payments. It has already been set into the budget. And if we calculate total debt payments under the budget, we arrive at a debt service ratio of 9.33%.
"Or stated plainly, the 9.33% figure already includes the FIDF obligations."
Mr Thirachai said if the FIDF obligations are excluded from the budget, then the actual debt service level drops further to just 6.46% of spending for the current year.
"When calculating figures, you need to be careful. Otherwise it can lead to misunderstandings and the FIDF interest expenses could be counted twice, just as [Mr Kittiratt] has done," he said.
"But we can't lie about the figures. It's embedded already into the budget law."
Mr Thirachai said given the actual state of the country's finances, the argument that an emergency decree is necessary to finance the water management projects is mistaken.
|26-01-2012, 12:39 PM||#16 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Thai-ASEAN News Network - Insurance Fund: A Sign of Mistrust from Foreign Community
Insurance Fund: A Sign of Mistrust from Foreign Community
UPDATE : 26 January 2012
It has been 2 months since the Strategic Committee for Reconstruction and Future Development (SCRF) under the leadership of Virapongsa Ramangkura and the Strategic Committee for Water Resources Management (SCWRM) under the leadership of Deputy Prime Minister Kittirat Na Ranong, as ordered by Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, started work. Its achievement so far consists of window dressing public debt under the excuse that the country needs to borrow trillions of baht to invest in flood prevention and rehabilitation to rebuild the country.
There hasn't been any concrete measures on flood prevention except for short-term, medium-term and long-term plans to reflect the necessity to take out loans. There are no details yet as to what is to be done, who will do them and when they will be carried out.
The only concrete measure seen so far is the construction of dams to protect various industrial estates that were flooded. Kittirat says construction should start in February and be completed by August before a new round of flooding hits.
Now this leads to questions posed by communities surround those industrial estates as they've been left out of the SCRF and the SCWRM's flood prevention plan. Entrepreneurs inside the industrial estates also questioned what is the use if the industrial estate is not flooded but all roads around it are. How will employees travel to work and how will raw material be transported in and finished products be transported out?
Confidence in the SCRF and the SCWRM can be measured by the viewpoints of investors and businesspeople on the government's flood prevention plan.
Vice President of the Federation of Thai Industries Wallop Witnakorn stated most investors are worried about flooding during the upcoming rainy season on how well the government's measures will work. They don't see any concrete details of the flood prevention plan and time is running out. What's most important now is to link information and work of related agencies as soon as possible.
This is just one of the official viewpoint given by a representative of the industrial sector. There's a whole lot more Thai and foreign businesspeople who lack confidence in the government that it'll be able to prevent flooding as nothing substantial has been done, but they don't want to voice it out to the media.
Another gauge of the confidence the business sector has in the government is a report that 14 out of 43 factories in the Saharattananakorn Industrial Estate in Ayutthaya, most of which are owned by the Japanese, have decided to relocate to other areas as they are not certain if they'll be flooded again this year.
The best indicator of the level of confidence in the government's flood prevention scheme is the establishment of the insurance fund by the government via the issuance of an executive decree. The fund has 50 billion baht and was initially slated to provide flood insurance only for houses and SME businesses. However, Kittirat has ordered the service to cover large industries that were hit by the flooding as well. Damage compensation is set for as high as 500 billion baht.
Aon Benfield, the world's largest reinsurance firm which was brought on board as an adviser, was shocked at the amount of damage compensation. It stated that other countries offer damage compensation at just 200 billion baht so it's asked the Thai government to bring the figure down to that.
The government had to extend the insurance fund's services to cover large industries because a lot of leading global reinsurance firm has refused to take on flood insurance in Thailand while those that do, triple the premium from the rate of 5% of the total damage compensation to 16%.
Domestic insurance firms say reinsurance firms have had to pay out flood compensation for factories at a total of 200 billion baht as the flooding hit massively and for a long period of time.
These firms are not certain the government will be able to prevent flooding at such massive scale from happening again so they either turn away flood insurance or else charge exorbitant premiums due to the higher risks. The Finance Ministry tried to send officials to talk to a couple of reinsurance firms in Singapore but they refused to budge on the issue.
Kittirat himself admitted that talks with foreign reinsurance firms reflect their concern about the non-clarity of the government's flood prevention plan, therefore, the best solution is for the government to provide the insurance by itself as it's confident it has the situation under control.
Looking back at when Virapongsa took up his post with the SCRF, he said he'd talked to global insurance giant Lloyd's and Japanese insurance firms and claimed they all have faith in the government's flood management plans and will be happy to provide reinsurance for Thai firms.
Between the 2 of them, someone must be lying!
The insurance fund is being set up with 50 billion baht of taxpayers' money and there's room for it to increase its capital without any limit. If flooding does occur and the government doesn't have control of the situation like what happened last year, it means the public will have to shoulder the burden of paying compensation for the government's failure to handle the crisis.
The insurance industry is abuzz right now with speculation as to who will manage the insurance fund as it must be a very capable individual who is knowledgeable about the insurance industry. Whoever gets this job will have to have close ties to Virapongsa and people in the government.
The key achievement of the SCRF and the SCWRM is certainly the establishment of the insurance fund which ironically reflects the failure of the government to inspire confidence in its flood prevention plan among foreign investors. Now that foreign reinsurance firms have turned Thailand away, the government needs to use the public's tax money to cover the risk from its flood management failure.
Translated from Manager Online editorial
|26-01-2012, 11:44 PM||#17 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Govt issues four controversial decrees
The Nation January 27, 2012 1:00 am
The government issued four emergency decrees to set in motion flood-relief efforts after they were published in the Royal Gazette yesterday.
The most controversial decree requires the Bank of Thailand to service Bt1.14 trillion in public debt incurred by the Financial Institutions Development Fund (FIDF). The decree demands the central bank contribute at least 90 per cent of its total net profit to pay off the debt.
The central bank will also have to transfer the remaining assets in its annual yield account to pay the debt by not transferring them to the special reserve account. The central bank has to make use of the FIDF's money or assets for debt repayment according to the Cabinet's order.
Two decrees authorise the central bank to provide Bt300 billion in soft loans and the Finance Ministry to borrow Bt350 billion to finance post-flood reconstruction projects.
The other decree creates a Bt50-billion insurance pool for flood-damaged companies.
|27-01-2012, 09:21 PM||#18 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Thai Central Bank Won
Thai Central Bank Won’t Print Money to Repay Debt, Prasarn Says
By Suttinee Yuvejwattana - Jan 27, 2012 5:04 PM GMT+0700
Bank of Thailand Governor Prasarn Trairatvorakul comments on the government’s decision to shift the burden of repaying bank bailout debt to the central bank.
Under an executive decree that became effective this week, the central bank will be responsible for paying the interest and principal on 1.14 trillion baht ($36.5 billion) of debt incurred during bank bailouts in the 1990s. The central bank plans to raise fees on commercial banks to help repay the debt.
Prasarn made the comments during a speech in Bangkok today.
On debt incurred by the central bank’s Financial Institutions Development Fund:
“We are not entirely pleased with the executive decree to transfer the FIDF’s debt-repayment burden to the central bank. But this is better than the earlier draft of the law, which may have led to monetization.
‘‘We won’t print money to repay the debt. But we will use money in the system. This will be a burden for financial institutions that we will need to manage.
‘‘Our proposal is to try not to burden the commercial banks to the extent that it affects their strength, but still be in a position to sustain the debt repayments.
‘‘We can cope with interest payments and will steadily pay off the principal.
‘‘The debt burden will not affect our decisions on key policies.’’
On a proposal to sell a 2 percent stake in PTT Pcl to a state- run fund to reduce public debt:
‘‘I don’t quite agree with that. It’s against the good governance rules that we try to promote among the private sector, so the government shouldn’t do that ourselves.’’
Last edited by StrontiumDog : 27-01-2012 at 09:29 PM.
|28-01-2012, 12:05 AM||#19 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Prasarn at ease with decree - The Nation
Prasarn at ease with decree
The Nation January 28, 2012 1:00 am
Final draft on FIDF debt allays BOT chief's concerns; promises not to overburden banks
BOT Governor Dr Prasarn Trairatvorakul yesterday said he was now less concerned about the executive decree on paying off the Financial Institutions Development Fund (FIDF)'s Bt1.14-trillion debt.
Speaking at a press conference on the BOT's policy direction in 2012, he said his concerns were allayed by the final draft of the decree, which is different from the first draft proposed late last year.
"The proposals before the Cabinet regarding the executive decree three times since late last year left me with different feelings. Before the New Year, I was much more concerned about it, as the idea of transferring the FIDF debt to the BOT would have technically meant monetisation of public debt, or printing money," said Prasarn.
"After the changes in the final draft, I have fewer concerns," he said.
The executive decree regarding the repayment of the FIDF debt, which became effective on Thursday, authorises the BOT to collect more premiums from financial institutions, implying that the burden is transferred to the financial institutions.
'We can manage'
"Now, we think we can manage. If we can reduce the principal amount, the interest will be also reduced," said Prasarn. "According to our formula, we expect to pay off the debt within the set time frame but on the assumption that a financial crisis does not happen again."
He said the additional contribution might increase the burden on banks. But, the BOT would not like to burden them too much and erode their financial position. After discussing with bankers what the premiums should be, the BOT will hold talks with Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Kittiratt Na-Ranong. Prasarn said the BOT was confident of managing the repayment of the FIDF debt. The sources for funds are additional premiums from commercial banks, assets of the FIDF, including shares of Krung Thai Bank.
"The executive decree seems a problem at hand. But, this can have an impact on the central bank's policy in the long term," he conceded.
Democrat leader Abhisit Vejjajiva said his party did not agree with the emergency decrees and the party will petition the Constitution Court to consider whether two decrees breached the Constitution: one is the decree authorising the Finance Ministry to borrow Bt350 billion to finance post-flood construction projects, and the other requiring the BOT to pay off debt of Bt1.14 trillion incurred by the FIDF. The two decrees might be in violation of the Constitution as there is no emergency for issuing such decrees, he said.
He also did not agree with the decree authorising the central bank to provide soft loans of Bt300 billion to flood victims. He said the government could use other means to provide soft loans to flood victims by subsidising the bank via its annual budget. The government wants to put all the burden on the central bank, he said. The decree also states that damage should have been suffered last year, which means flood victims in the South this year will not be covered by the decree, said Abhisit.
The Democrat chief, however, said he agreed in principle with the setting up of an insurance fund that would provide flood protection to companies and people. Abhisit questioned whether the size of the insurance fund was too small. There is not much detail about management of the fund, he said.
Abhisit also referred to the Constitution Court ruling in favour of the previous Democrat-led coalition government for issuing an emergency decree to cushion the economy from the global financial crisis.
The previous case is different from the current one, he said. "Now, there is no emergency to borrow Bt350 billion as it does not mean it would solve the flooding," he said.
Senator Kamnoon Sithisamarn said senators would also petition the Court to rule whether the debt decree violated the Constitution's Article 184. He said that there is no emergency requiring the government to issue such a decree. So far, 47 senators have signed the petition, he added.
|30-01-2012, 05:28 PM||#21 (permalink)|
Join Date: Aug 2007
Legal challenge to financial decrees filed
The Democrat Party has submitted a petition to House Speaker Somsak Kiatsuranont, asking that he request the Constitution Court for a ruling on two financial executive decrees.
The petition, signed by 128 members of parliament, was on Monday submitted by Democrat deputy leader Korn Chatikavanij, MPs Wirat Kalayasiri, Atthawit Suwanphakdi and Thavorn Senniam.
The opposition is asking that the court to rule whether the issuing of the two financial executive decrees was in violation of Article 184 of the consitution, as there is no emergency which requires that they be issued.
The first decree allows the government to transfer full responsibility for repayment of the 1.14 trillion baht in debt from the 1997 crisis to the Bank of Thailand. The other allows the government to seek loans amounting to 350 billion baht for water management programmes and flood restoration and rehabilitation.
"I think the Constitution Court's deliberation will impact economic stability and security," said former finance minister Korn.
Democrat Party deputy leader Korn Chatikavanij (left) submits a petition to House Speaker Somsak Kiatsuranont, asking him to request the Constitution Court for a ruling on two financial executive decrees on Jan 30, 2012.
(Photo by Thiti Wannamontha)
If the cabinet has the power to enact laws without the involvement of legislators, there will be a negative impact on economic stability and confidence, he said.
House Speaker Somsak said that he will forward the petition to the Constitution Court as quickly as possible.
In the meantime, the House, which will meet again on Feb 1, will not deliberate the two executive decrees and await the charter court's ruling on the matter.
"If the Constitution Court rules that the two executive decrees breach the charter, the government will then decide whether it will step down, but this is not required by the law," Mr Somsak said.
This morning, Mr Korn said in a message posted on FaceBook that his party will continue its efforts to protect the country from being robbed by the Pheu Thai-led government.
"Today, we [the Democrat Party] will petition the Constitution Court for an interpretation on whether issuing the executive decree to seek 350 billion baht in loans is considered a use of dictatorial power in the parliament.
"The government intends to avoid scrutiny by legislators and the executive decree will have a negative impact on economic stability," said the Democrat deputy leader.
The law would enable the government to borrow as much money as it wants. The government could then disregard its spending, he said.
"When there is too much debt, it could just transfer the burden to others," Mr Korn said.
He said fugitive former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra had been negotiating fuel issues with different countries, coinciding with the government's plan to privatise national energy conglomerate PTT Plc.
"We must be alert about the government's intentions because they will affect the country and its people," he said.
"Keeping quiet while monks and other peaceful protesters are murdered and jailed is not evidence of constructive engagement." - Arvind Ganesan, Human Rights Watch.
"I think...I think it's in my basement. Let me go upstairs and check" - M.C. Escher
|30-01-2012, 05:40 PM||#22 (permalink)|
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One more in the torrent of stuff the Amart will send to courts, asking Judges to deliberate on political matters.
When one loses elections and cannot go to the people, I suppose this is an alternative.
The bit about using dictatorial powers in the Parliament, is one of the advantages of Thailand and Commonwealth nations, with their system of Governance.
As opposed to trhe USA model, where everything can get hung up in debate -Consider the obstructionism of any Obama inititives by the Tea Party - the Thai model allows the Govt. to act on its' parliamentary majority...which can be viewed as dictatorial by those who cannot garner electoral advantages.
Those who understand this form of Democracy, realize that elections in the future will render a verdict on these Govt. dictatorial powers. The others as represented by Korn in this article, do not.
Elections scare the hell out of them.
Last edited by Calgary : 30-01-2012 at 05:48 PM.
|06-02-2012, 09:01 PM||#23 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Charter court agrees to rule on legality of decrees
The Constitution Court on Monday accepted for consideration petitions filed by parliamentarians seeking a ruling on the constitutionality of two post-flood financial executive decrees.
One of the petitions was filed by 128 MPs of the Democrat Party on Jan 30 asking the court to rule on the legality of two executive decrees issued by the government - one for the Finance Ministry to seek 350 billion baht in loans, and the other to transfer 1.14 trillion baht in debt from the 1997 financial crisis from the Finance Ministry to the Financial Institutions Development Fund (FIDF).
The other petition was filed by 69 senators on Jan 31 seeking the court's ruling on the constitutionality of the executive decree to transfer the 1.14 trillion baht debt to the FIDF, which is under the central bank.
Court spokesman Pimol Thampithakpong said the Constitution Court judges agreed at a meeting today to accept the petitions for consideration. It would be about 30 days before a ruling could be made.
Democrat leader Abhisit Vejjajiva said the government should not accuse the opposition of obstructing its flood prevention operations just because his party filed a petition against the two financial executive decrees.
"The government should stop blaming others and should instead concentrate on solving flood problems," Mr Abhisit said.
Some of the government's most immediate tasks were to set up a model to determine the flow of floodwater and accurately analyse the amount of water in the two months before the next potential flooding begins, he said.
"I agree with the idea that water management should be separated from the bureaucratic system because there have been many problems in the past and there was political interference, preventing management from achieving its target," the opposition leader said.
The former prime minister said he was concerned that the government was still unclear about how it would tackle flooding in different areas.
The government should work with local communities as they had a better knowledge of their areas. However, these communities should not create a flood prevention plan on their own since it would affect other areas as well, he said.
Former finance minister Korn Chatikavanij (left) and ex-prime minister Abhisit Vejjajiva (Photo REUTERS)
Mr Abhisit said the government should act as a coordinator in exchanging information and determine a strategy to ensure optimum results from water management.
Democrat deputy leader Korn Chatikavanij said in a message posted on FaceBook on Monday that the government was trying to make the excuse that it would not be able to work without the 350 billion baht in loans.
The government can carry on its work even if the court is still deliberating on the executive decrees, he said.
Mr Korn said that he did not stop working when Pheu Thai filed a similar petition against the previous administration.
"The most important issue is that the government still does not have clear investment and spending plans and there is no inevitable urgency [as stated in the constitution] to require the issuing of the executive decrees," said the former finance minister.
Deputy Prime Minister Kittiratt Na-Ranong was wrtonfg in trying to convince the parliament that the loans were needed to boost the confidence of foreign investors, because they were not confident how the government would spend the money, Mr Korn said.
"I'm worried that if the government is able to borrow money whenever it wants, the intention to control financial discipline will fail," he said.
|07-02-2012, 12:23 AM||#24 (permalink)|
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^ Is this actually true, that the PT have decided how much they are going to spend before they know what they are going to spend it on?
Who in their right minds can defend a government like this? Oh wait.....
Last edited by longway : 07-02-2012 at 12:30 AM.
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