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International School Supplement IN THIS EDITION

Accounting Issues in Thailand Business Awards 2009 EMBASSY NEWS Akara Mining Receives AustCham Australian Embassy and Friends Business of the Year Award Help Clean up the World



Sponsor’s news community services dwp Brings Green Living to New AustCham ESB Charity Golf Heights in Abu Dhabi Open 2009



Contents PATRON His Excellency Paul Grigson Australian Ambassador to the Kingdom of Thailand

AustCham Thailand Business Award 2009 06 Akara Mining

PRESIDENT Andrew Durieux Coverage Portfolio: Key Links

Business Briefs 08 Accounting Issues in Thailand embassy news 10 Contemporary Indigenous Australian Art from Balgo 12 Australian Embassy and Friends Help Clean up the World 13 Australian Government’s latest initiatives to combat climate change ATBC 14 A Year in Reflection...

24 chamber Events 24 ESB Sundowners at Holiday Inn Pattaya 26 Natural Ville & LeNotre Ashes Golf Day 28 Thai Australian Alumni Night at Westin Grande Sukhumvit


John Anderson Meinhardt Portfolio: Strategic Reviews; AFL TREASURER Nigel McKinnon Boral Thailand Portfolio: Treasury DIRECTORS David Armstrong Post Publishing Portfolio: Marketing and PR; SME Services

international schools in Thailand

15 Gossip Defined 16 Wildflowers 17 Not Every Lesson Is Learned in a Classroom 18 Free and Open Software for Education

VICE-PRESIDENTS Sutipong Ittipong Siam City Bank Portfolio: Community Services

Achara Boonyahansa Grant Thornton Portfolio: Alumni

18 30 Luncheon Meeting on 14 October 2009 30 Breakfast Briefing on 20 October 2009 32 Phuket Seminar and Sundowners 34 Bangkok Sundowners at ‘Lotus Garden’ Centara Grand Members’ offers 36 Festive Season Special Offers

Gold Sponsor’s News 20 dwp Brings Green Living to New Heights in Abu Dhabi

New Members 37 New Members and Changes

COMMUNITY SERVICES 22 AustCham ESB Charity Golf Open 2009

From the Chamber Office 38 Message from the ED

Cover photo: Climbing Mount Kinabalu, Bangkok Patana School (aiming towards Duke of Edinburgh award).

Amanda Canavan Energi Design Asia Portfolio: Business Awards; Australia Day M.L. Laksasubha Kridakon Baan Laksasubha Resort Hua Hin Portfolio: Sponsorship; Alumni Anne Lewinski AL Consultancy Portfolio: Sundowners Bangkok Belinda Skinner Talent Plus Portfolio: Communications Ben Yong Baker & McKenzie Portfolio: Governance; JFCCT and Policies Saeed Zaki dwp Portfolio: Industry Groups; Regional Sundowners Ex Officio Maurine Lam Trade Commissioner, Austrade

v From the Board

COORDINATORS Paul Whyte ESB Coordinator Email: Paul Wilkinson AGS Four Winds International Moving ESB Coordinator Email: Steve Brajak Raimon Land Phuket Coordinator Email: Harry Usher Lady Pie Phuket Coordinator Email: Executive Director Brett Gannaway Australian-Thai Chamber of Commerce 20th Floor, Thai CC Tower 889 South Sathorn Road Bangkok 10120 Tel.: +66 2 210 0216 Fax: +66 2 675 6696

Editorial Committee Belinda Skinner, Robert Taylor, David Dombrovskis, Gregers Moller, Gary Woollacott Marketing & Production Scand-Media Corp. Ltd 4/41-42 Moo 3, Thanyakarn Village Ramintra Soi 14, Bangkok Tel.: +66 2 943-7166/8 Fax: +66 2 943-7169 Advertising Finn Balslev Email: Contributions to Advance magazine are welcome. Please submit content to by the first day of the month for publication in the following month’s magazine. Opinions expressed in Advance do not necessarily reflect the views AustChamThailand Advance of the Chamber.

It’s Christmas time – there’s no need to be afraid


irstly, from myself and the AustCham committee and staff, we would like to wish everybody a happy, safe and festive holiday season. It has been an eventful, at times frustrating, and yet an interesting year. As the holidays draw down upon us, we should take the time to reflect upon the year that has just passed, as well as plan for the year ahead. The key highlights for me have been.… For AustCham we have weathered the storm of the local political climate and the external Global Financial Crisis. We held the successful Australian Movie Star Australia Day Ball back in January, the Business Awards in August and the very closely fought AFL Grand Final in September. All surpassed our expectations. I think everyone will agree that Bangkok Sundowners has been simply amazing this year – 10 down and one left. Eastern Seaboard and Phuket Sundowners have also been well supported and we held the first Chiang Mai Sundowners. Alumni events have been growing steadily. The joint AIT/AustCham Christmas BBQ, a couple of Golf Days and a series of informational Breakfast Briefings (Webinars) and Lunches round out the events of this year. Throw in the recently updated and delivered Handbook, the continuously updated Web Site and the magazine you are now reading and you can see that the AustCham team have worked hard all year to provide you – the members – with the information and networking opportunities that hopefully you have taken advantage of and enjoyed.

AustCham lost some members, and friends, but gained some new ones – ending the year almost exactly as we started. This is the life of the expatriate community. The thing I like about being an Australian is that we treat every stranger as a friend we have not yet met and memories of old friends tend to become stronger, rather than weaker over time. The 10th Annual Convoy for Kids provided a great day out for the disabled and disadvantaged kids – well done again to David Mills and the organising committee. The less well known activities of AustCham

have started to bear some fruit – our SME activities and the Advocacy work performed by our dedicated members have resulted in a number of presentations and meetings with various government individuals and groups, including the Prime Minister. The opening of the new One Start-One Stop shop with representatives of over 15 government departments is a clear sign that our members’ concerns are being listened to. I think it is a reasonable prediction that the Global Financial Crisis and the Thai Political scene will gradually improve – but not without some hiccups along the way. AustCham and myself believe that all our members should be prepared for these hiccups. Lastly, for those of you looking ahead, at the time of writing there are still a few opportunities to get your company’s name up in lights through one of the AustCham sponsorship packages. Please be safe and take a break over the next few weeks and we hope to see you all back for the Australia Day Ball on 30 January 2010!

Andrew Durieux President, AustCham Thailand December 2009


AustCham Thailand Business Award 2009

Akara Mining Congratulations to Akara Mining for receiving the AustCham Business of the Year Award.


kara Mining is a highly successful gold mining company. The company owns and operates the low cost Chatree gold mine in central Thailand using world’s best practice for safe, environmental and socially responsible operations. Chatree is the largest gold mine in Thailand and, since its commissioning in 2001, the mine has produced over 900,000 ounces of gold and 2.8 million ounces of silver to 30 June, 2009 at cash costs which continue to rank Chatree as one of the lowest cost gold operations in the world. FORMULA FOR SUCCESS Akara’s vision is to be a preferred gold mining company delivering shareholder value through profit and growth. Our expertise is based on embracing cultural diversity and skill development, fostering teamwork and a focus on the best result for all stakeholders. COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGES

Akara has consolidated its position as a significant and profitable gold producer, with improved growth potential. The operational and financial results reflect the completion of the plant expansions complemented by 6

December 2009

exploration success near the mine site and regionally. The key growth initiatives for Akara are the continued development of the Chatree operation. CURRENT MARKET POSITION AND FUTURE PLANS Responsible mining and corporate social responsibility continue to be key themes at Akara. The mine impacts positively on the workers, suppliers and local communities. A safe and healthy workplace is critical to efficient sustainable operations. Chatree has over 11.3 million hours worked (six years) without a Lost Time Incident and continues to be the safest gold mine in the world based on publicly available data, with no reportable environmental incidents during the life of the operation. All international standards have been maintained and the company is accredited with: Social Accountability SA 8000, Health & Safety ISO 18001, Environment ISO 14001, Quality ISO 9001, Laboratory Standard ISO 17025 and Thai Labour Standard TLS 8001. Akara has spent 2009 delivering on the promise of bringing Chatree North into full production, returning to be a low cash cost mid-tier gold producer and positioning

itself to be able to expand the processing plant and advance the exploration potential for future deposits. The company is reviewing a proposal to increase ore processing capacity to five million tonnes per annum and a decision is expected in the last quarter of 2009. A twelve to fifteen month construction period is anticipated which could result in the new Chatree North gold processing plant being operational by the start of 2011. CLEAR COMMUNICATION Akara Mining Limited is committed to respecting the safety, health, social, economic and environmental needs of the stakeholders that could be influenced by their activities, and anticipate the needs of future generations in the communities where they work. Their commitment is to operate at the forefront of recognised best practice for environmental achievement and community development. Our management systems support this commitment and they integrate sustainability as an essential element in the duties of all employees and contractors. Their motto is “SUCCESS TOGETHER”. WINNING CONCEPT Akara believe that “People With Education and Training are Assets, Not Costs”. Akara promotes education through the building of schools, the sponsorship of educational programs in local schools, providing scholarships to local students, providing educational assistance to employees and hiring students as part of their school training program. AustChamThailand Advance

Business Brief

Accounting Issues in Thailand


ow can smaller companies in Thailand best handle their accounting problems? They should use good accounting software for their businesses and consider hiring an accounting service for dealings with the Revenue Department, according to Mick Tonkin, managing director of A++ Software in Phuket. “Using accounting software allows you to keep your finger on the button. But if your Thai staff are not experienced accountants you could consider using an accounting service to deal with the Revenue Department, while your internal accounts provide invoicing and management information.” Mick gave his advice at an AustCham Breakfast Briefing, held at the AustCham office on 20 October 2009. He spoke on accounting problems facing small and medium enterprises in Thailand – a theme that reflected the results of an AustCham survey of SME members earlier this year. The survey found accounting was one of the main problems they had to handle. Key issues included difficulty in finding reliable accounting services and the differing interpretations of tax laws by Revenue Department officials. Mick Tonkin is not an accountant but he has had long experience in writing accounting software, in the UK and in Thailand. He moved to Phuket in the 1990s and is now one of the small but growing group of AustCham members on the resort island. Mick said one of the problems for SMEs in Thailand is that tax rules are different from those in other countries. Withholding tax – “a way of making you a tax collector by deducting taxes due to be paid by your supplier” – was one example. Another problem was the way Revenue officials interpreted the rules. “Many of the rules are left for the final decision to be made at the discretion of the officer,” he said. All companies with more than 10 staff are


December 2009

required to have a qualified accountant sign off on the monthly returns. Most companies use an in-house accountant but the quality of the staff varies and many work only at the level of a bookkeeper.

Mick said many companies considered accounts a chore. But accounting information, he said, was a powerful management tool. Good software could provide information efficiently and in “real time”.

SMEs that do not want the hassle of handling accounting and dealing with the Revenue Department often use accounting services. “The advantage is that they have passed the Revenue compliance to a third party and need not employ a qualified accountant,” he said. “(But) a big problem is finding a good, reputable accountant who can give unbiased advice at a reasonable price.”

He gave examples of business questions that could be answered using good accounting software. They included: • What products have not sold in the last three months? • What was the profit on the best-selling items? • Who owes money – and for how long? • What was the result of the latest marketing campaign?

Another issue was that using a service means that companies do not have control over their accounts. “You go to the service at the end of the month with a shoebox containing all your sales and purchase invoices,” Mick said. “They do the returns – end of story.

Mick said there were many internationalbrand accounting programs available. But their inability to handle the Thai language and specific Thai Revenue Department requirements were drawbacks. Many Thai programs do not support English and some used antiquated technology.

“You have no ‘real time’ information. Stock control is almost impossible. I hear so many complaints of error or, at least, inaccuracies. One of my customers was asked to pay 1.2 million baht in tax, which he knew was wrong. On investigation, the amount was only 160,000 baht.”

“You need to be in control of your company and accounting is the front line,” Mick said. “If your software can produce all the required Revenue documents, the work required by an accounting service will be minimal and their charges should reflect this.”

AustChamThailand Advance




Wine Bar

Contact joint owner Alan Cooke MBE Mobile 081 893 4200 email Fax 076 263 708 For further info please visit: Artwork and design courtesy of Veritas Graphics.

Embassy News

Contemporary Indigenous Australian Art from Balgo


he Australian Embassy, Bangkok and the National Gallery, Bangkok, are proud to present a prestigious travelling exhibition, “Balgo: Contemporary Australian Art from the Balgo Hills”. The exhibition will be shown at the National Gallery, Chao Fa Road, Bangkok, from 4 to 27 December 2009.

Produced by the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and curated by Artbank, the government’s art rental initiative, Balgo comprises a stunning collection of works by Balgo artists (Warlayirti), including significant artworks from the Artbank Collection, and an important suite of prints acquired expressly for the exhibition. The Warlayirti artists of the Balgo Hills area are one of the most diverse and innovative artistic communities in Australia. Located on the northern fringe of the Tanami and Great Sandy Deserts in Western Australia, this remote community has produced paintings and prints which have become highly sought after by international collectors. Balgo painting is renowned for its bold design. These works are a celebratory riot of colour and energy which explore in depth the stories, history and the lives of some of the world’s greatest living artists. Artists include some of the most respected Balgo painters — already acknowledged as stars by the international art world — and some of the new generation beginning to make names for themselves while carrying on a unique cultural legacy. “Balgo: Contemporary Australian Art from the Balgo Hills” will be on view at the National Gallery, Bangkok from 4 to 27 December, 2009. Exhibition runs: 4-27 December 2009 Open Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00 am to 4:00pm at National Gallery, Bangkok Chao Fa Road, Bangkok Tel: 0-2282 -2639-40 Further information: Tel: 0-2344 -6462 Media enquiries: Tel: 0-2344 -6463


December 2009

AustChamThailand Advance

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Embassy News

Australian Embassy and Friends Help Clean up the World


he Australian Embassy recently teamed up with the Plant-A-TreeToday Foundation to mark Clean Up the World Day 2009 by planting 200 mangrove saplings in the ecologically sensitive area of Bangpu Recreation Centre, Samut Prakarn. Also joining the action were children from the Klong Toey slum community, along with Sister Joan Evans, an Australian religious Sister who has been working tirelessly over a decade for the better of people’s life there.

Over sixty Embassy staff and family members, together with Sister Joan and the Klong Toey kids started the day with a nature walk through a mangrove forest, collecting rubbish along the way. While impressed with the beauty of the mangrove ecosystem which plays an important role in acting as spawning and nursery areas for many marine species, participants quickly realised the large volume of rubbish in the area. This recalls the reaction of Ian Kiernan, founder of Clean Up the World, who devised the environmental campaign after a yacht race in an ocean choked by rubbish. “I hope the activity will raise awareness of environmental issues among us all, particularly younger generations like the Klong Toey kids” said Glen Connell, First Secretary of the Embassy’s Political and Economic section who also brought his two-year old daughter to join the activity. Like the temperature, the enthusiasm of participants only rose as the morning progressed. After a lesson on how to plant mangrove saplings, participants got down and dirty, planting trees in the mud. “The children had been totally involved from the moment they stepped off the bus – they had walked and worked with enjoyment; slipped and skidded in the


December 2009

mud and then the clean-up! Made so easy and yet very serious business too!” said Sister Joan. Why planting mangroves Mangroves are one of the world’s most threatened habitats, more than half the

world’s mangrove forests have already been destroyed and less than 1% of the remaining mangrove forests have any form of protection. Despite their smelly reputation, they absorb more carbon dioxide per unit area than ocean phytoplankton, a critical factor in global climate stability.

AustChamThailand Advance

Embassy News

Australian Government’s latest initiatives to combat climate change Australian National University to receive AUD1 million in Green Precincts funding The Australian National University (ANU) will receive AUD1 million in the government funding to transform its iconic Canberra campus into a sustainable green hub. Environment Minister Peter Garrett said the funding would help the University implement its Education Precincts for the Future project.

program to help deliver a long-term sustainable future for Murray-Darling Basin irrigation communities. Minister for Climate Change and Water, Senator Penny Wong, said the funding would help irrigation communities adjust to a future with less water by supporting farmers investing in water-saving irrigation practices and technology. Call for water savings proposals for Australian towns and small cities The Australian Government is seeking proposals to develop and implement

practical projects to help secure urban water supplies in Australian towns and cities with fewer than 50,000 people. ‘The government is committed to helping Australian communities secure their water supplies for a future with less water due to climate change,’ Senator Wong said. Funding under this program will support cities and towns with fewer than 50,000 people to improve the reliability, efficiency and sustainability of their urban water resources while reducing demand on potable supplies.

The Education Precincts for the Future project is one of 13 projects supported by the Australian government’s Green Precincts Fund, an initiative to prepare Australia for a future with less water and to encourage local communities to better manage their water and energy use. New South Wales Embargo on Water Trades Lifted The Australian and New South Wales governments recently announced a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) allowing New South Wales farmers to sell their water entitlements to the Federal Government to return to the Murray-Darling Basin’s stressed rivers and wetlands. New South Wales has agreed to lift its embargo on water trades associated with purchases of water for the environment. As a result of the purchase of Toorale station by the New South Wales Government, some 8.7 gigalitres of water have been delivered to environmental sites in New South Wales, South Australia and Victoria. Proposals invited for AUD300 million on-farm irrigation program The Australian government is calling for proposals for a new AUD300 million on-farm irrigation efficiency grants

AustChamThailand Advance

December 2009


ATBC President’s Column

A Year in Reflection… 2009 started with the newly appointed Thai Government under Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, leader of Thailand’s Democrat Party coming to grips with a difficult political situation in Thailand overlayed by the global financial crisis.

PATRON His Excellency Mr Bandhit Sotipalalit Ambassador, Royal Thai Embassy, Canberra ATBC – Australian Section NATIONAL PRESIDENT Robert Taylor AusThai Connections

The first few months were very challenging with street protests causing disruption to daily activities and widespread media interest. However, as usual, most Australian investors, tourism and business have continued on regardless reflecting the good relationships between our two countries.

IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT John Connor Karjura Pty Ltd VICE PRESIDENT Chair of the Victorian Chapter Graham Sherry Baker & McKenzie

This year also saw the inaugural meeting of the Joint Commission on Bilateral Cooperation being convened by the Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon Stephen Smith, MP and Thai Minister for Foreign Affairs, HE Mr Kasit Piromnya on 8 May 2009 in Perth. Australia and Thailand are also parties to the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement which was signed in Hua Hin on 27 February 2009. It was also pleasing to see Thailand successfully hosting the various ASEAN ministerial meetings in Phuket in July 2009. The bi-lateral relationship also extends to development assistance and in May 2009 the Minister for Foreign Affairs the Hon Stephen Smith MP, approved an assistance package of AUD1 million to assist in improving education in southern Thailand. The ATBC has its AGM in Canberra on 2 December 2009 following a luncheon with the Board of the Australia Thailand Institute and members of our National Executive. I take this opportunity of thanking my fellow Executive committee members in both Australia and Thailand for their work during the year to advance the cause of the ATBC for its members; our Chair of the ATBC Thai Section Khun Barbara Buranasilpin and to our hardworking National Executive Director Mr. Colin Mackenzie, based in Canberra. We also appreciate the assistance afforded to us by our patron H.E. Bandhit Sotipalalit, Thailand’s Ambassador to Australia and congratulate him on his recently concluded three year term of office. We look forward to working with the new Ambassador in 2010.


December 2009

NATIONAL TREASURER Douglas Blunt Centrelease Australia Pty Ltd

Our members also benefit from our relationship with AustCham – the monthly magazine being a timely ongoing reminder of this – and our Executive committee values this longstanding bi-lateral relationship. We were fortunate in our members having briefings this year from both the current and immediate past President of AustCham in Melbourne and Sydney respectively. We also maintain our friendly relationship with the Thai Chamber of Commerce and the Federation of Thai industries. And of course appreciate the efforts of the Australian Ambassador to Thailand, Mr. Paul Grigson. We look forward to continuing to be of service to our members in 2010 as the regional economies hopefully emerge from the GFC and I remind you that you can contact our Executive Director Colin Mackenzie through secretariat@aust-thai. should you have any queries or require any assistance on your endeavours in Thailand.

EXECUTIVE MEMBERS Clare Florence Glen Robinson ASEAN Focus Group Pty Limited Gavin Thomas Kingsgate Consolidated Ltd Director - Thailand Liaison Graham Storah SECRETARIAT Colin Mackenzie Australia Thailand Business Council PO Box 6005 KINGSTON ACT 2604 Tel: +61 2 6273 2311 Fax:+61 2 6273 3196 ATBC – Thai Section Chairperson Khun Barbara Buranasilpin

Wishing you and your families all the best for the Christmas season. Regards

Robert Taylor National President Email: AustChamThailand Advance

International School Supplement

International Schools in Thailand Advance is pleased to present our International School Supplement. AustCham Thailand invited International Schools in Thailand to make a contribution to Advance so that readers can learn more about the structure and activities of those schools. The supplement would not be possible without the participation of the International Schools. AustCham greatly appreciates their contribution.

Gossip Defined T en years after it happened, I still find value in sharing Tom Evan’s story: it was shortly before Christmas one year, and the Lower School youngster asked a typically concrete, literal question. She wanted to know if Jesus actually was born on 25 December.

Not surprised by the nature of the question, the teacher did what good teachers do. Instead of ignoring a good question, she replied, “Let’s find out.” So the class went off to the encyclopaedia. They read about Christmas, its origins, and its celebration in different lands. They learned about the winter solstice and various other observances of re-birth. The encyclopaedia entry pointed out that while no one knows the exact date of Jesus’ birth, the Christian tradition is to celebrate it on 25 Decembe. The class discussed this. We can’t know exactly which words the children carried home with them, but one parent took us to task. He said the teacher “told the children that Christmas wasn’t Jesus’ birthday.” He accepted the child’s report as definitive and pronounced the teacher’s behaviour troublesome, especially for Christian parents. Our attempt to explain the context was interpreted both as defensiveness and a challenge to the child’s truthfulness, a quagmire from which there is no retreat. Sadly, there is little worse than trying to resolve the polarity of “My child always tells the truth” and “You’re saying my child doesn’t tell the truth.” This anecdote is simple, but it illustrates how much we value a mutual, trusting relationship between parents and school. To do our job well, we count on parents to understand that the younger AustChamThailand Advance

the child, the greater the likelihood of a more narrow and literal perception of events. Older students display this by becoming less communicative and providing only the barest amount of information. Most likely, students have not had time to discover the wider angle, adult lens. In this case, it would have been very helpful had the parent been able to trust that an experienced teacher would not make such an isolated statement, and that there was a broader classroom context which the child had not fully assimilated. Truth and discernment of context aren’t attributes children are born with. Like other values, they are modelled and developed over time. Things that are seen or heard as black or white develop shades of grey only as children mature and test their emerging values to see what works and what doesn’t. Every youngster has given a teacher or parent a less than complete description of events without intending anyone any obvious harm. In schooling and parenting both, it is a terribly important challenge for the adults to understand what’s really going on and to respond appropriately. We owe our children nothing less. To preserve strong parent-schoolteacher-student inter-relationships, one principle must prevail. Before we express to our children or to other parties a judgment about something we didn’t see or hear, we should always communicate with those who did. They are the ones best able to act on questions. From our point of view, it is always damaging when, without first consulting with the school and teacher, a parent agrees with

a youngster that the teacher was wrong, says so, and then heads into school to set it all straight. There is little else that so effectively diminishes student respect for the teacher. Their ideal relationship implies mutual respect, and when respect becomes unilateral, the relationship withers. Reviving it is very difficult. Also, in some cases, the child will have discovered and wielded a power beyond his years and judgment. Clever children sometimes will use that power to manipulate both parents and teachers. Observance of this principle also helps avoid the obvious awkward situations that can arise when people discuss “what happened” without access to all the facts. I’ve seen a few tough instances when a teacher and school acted admirably, but others disagreed and felt at liberty to say whatever they pleased about the school and the handling of the contested event. Often the school had no choice but to stand silently by, unable to comment without violating confidences. Fortunately, these kinds of disagreements are infrequent. I comment about them only because they can take on fictional lives of their own, and over the years, many parents and teachers have asked me why I can’t “do something” about gossip, which might be aptly defined as only one half of any story. No one is perfect, schools or parents. We make some mistakes and correct all we can. And if we disagree, mutual trust and a sense of perspective and context have a wonderful way of keeping communication open and preserving our common goal: fine teaching and learning. Jaemi Kaiulani Hodgson New International School of Thailand 0 2651 2065, ext 100 December 2009


International School Supplement

Wildflowers By Dr. Bill Gerritz

What was working? What was not working? Besides talking with experts, this was the second most powerful strategy. For example, my first reflection revealed that looking at the flower was inefficient. To identify wild flowers you look at the leaves. They tell almost the whole story. Another reflection involved the frustration of not being able to find a flower in the book. A little research showed that only about 50% of all Rocky Mountain National Park wildflowers were even in the book.


ast spring International School Bangkok (ISB) revised its definition of learning, which you can find at the end of this article. As learning is the core business of our school, we feel that it is imperative that we are clear about it. I decided to try out our revised definition and see if it worked. This summer I spent many hours hiking the trails of Rocky Mountain National Park in the U.S. Since our definition asks students to develop understanding, to progress from novice to expert, I wanted to pick an area in which I was a complete ignoramus. I selected wildflowers. So I applied the learning approaches that are concomitant with our definition. My learning goal was to be able to quickly identify at least 25 varieties of wildflowers and understand their patterns of life. I also wanted to know if and how Native Americans had used them for food and medicine. I found a book that provided pictures and information about the 200 wildflowers in the park. It also provided a schema for identifying flowers. It was actually the schema I learned rather than the flowers. They came easily after the schema was in place. By the way, the schema has you looking at the whole plant, not just flowers. I now have a whole new vocabulary - basal, carpal, sepals, whorls and so on. I transferred learning from another area where I am a bit of an expert, bird watching. It turns out that flowers are easier than birds to identify since they stay put, rather than flying out of sight! Identifying a bird is much easier when you know the main classifications. So I learned the main categories of wildflowers and sure enough my success rate picked up. Whenever I was on the trail and having trouble with a flower, I would ask others on the trail if they could identify it. This


December 2009

Summer is over but I can hardly wait for next summer to learn more flowers. That is the lifelong learner part. Once you get hooked on understanding an area and move along the novice-toexpert track, you are forever curious and motivated to learn more.

turned out to be the most powerful learning strategy since these people usually lived in the area and were experts. I could hear how they thought and tried to copy their thinking. My poor wife Marcia - as with all good learning, the more you know, the faster you learn and the more enthusiastic you become. Understanding really is an ever expanding circle of wonder. By the time I had my first 20 flowers, Marcia had to listen to me explain why for example – this is a shooting star and not a chiming bell. Then she had to listen while I explained why. After awhile, she became a partner in identifying the flowers and my learning rate accelerated again, just as it would have if we were studying history at ISB. Marcia and I went on a short trip to New Mexico. I could not wait to apply my new learning to the flowers in the Kit Carson National Forest. I picked up a little book on the wildflowers of New Mexico and was quickly identifying old friends and new flowers that do not live farther north. Along this learning path, I stopped from time to time to reflect on my learning.

Oh by the way, at summer’s end I could fluently identify 49 flowers and could bore anyone with how the Native Americans used them. My conclusion is that our definition of learning works and works far better than traditional learning – memorising isolated facts and skills and being a passive learner. ISB’s Definition of Learning Learning is the primary focus of our school and we recognise learning as a life-long adventure. We value meaningful learning where students construct enduring understanding by developing and applying knowledge, skills, and attitudes. Increased understanding is evidenced by students who: • Explain its relevance • Describe how it connects to or conflicts with prior learning • Communicate it effectively to others • Generalise and apply it effectively to new situations • Reflect critically on their own and other’s learning • Ask questions to extend learning • Create meaningful solutions Dr. Bill Gerritz is Head of School of International School Bangkok. AustChamThailand Advance

International School Supplement

Not Every Lesson Is Learned in a Classroom T

interests, as the amazing range of activities undertaken by the recent Gold Awardees shows.

he International Award has been offered by Bangkok Patana School as part of the extra-curricular activities program for several years and the ever-increasing number of students participating is a testament to its popularity.

Patana Alumni member, Emma Richardson, a recent Gold Award recipient who is now embarking on her first year at Cambridge University, walked and kayaked for her expeditions, honed her violin playing skills in the school orchestra for her Skills section, volunteered with Habitat for Humanity for the Service section, salsa danced for Physical Recreation and attended a Model United Nations conference in Beijing as part of the Residential section.

The International Award is a challenging self-development program for 14 to 25 year olds. Launched in the UK in 1956 as The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, the program has now spread to 126 countries and over six million young people worldwide have participated. Many families moving to frenetic urban environments like Bangkok are often concerned that their teenagers will miss out on outdoor pursuits. Participating in the International Award is a great way to learn and practise vital skills, participate in expeditions and adventurous journeys, and engage in volunteering activities whilst developing self-confidence and commitment along the way.

“I really enjoyed participating in the Award. It’s a unique experience and it was really satisfying to take on challenges that were outside our normal academic program. It’s tough and very challenging – especially the expeditions – but once it’s over you realise how much fun it is.” Peck Sangiambut managed to play both badminton and violin during his Award years and attended a choral festival in Kuala Lumpur for his Residential project. Peck said the final adventurous journey for his Gold Award was the biggest challenge.

Sally Madden, Head of Outdoor Education at Patana, is delighted with the success of the program. “We had a record number of students achieving their Gold International Awards during the last school year. All 21 students showed tremendous dedication in achieving Gold. As well as working hard on their International Baccalaureate studies, they have all managed to complete the requirements for Gold which has taken a lot of perseverance and commitment. I am very proud of their achievements. I know that as well as having some wonderful memories, they have developed skills and confidence that universities and employers alike will be looking for in the future.” It is no mean feat to achieve Gold; most students take around two years. If they participate in all three Awards it can take up to four years. Students begin with the Bronze Award at 14 years of age. Bronze requires a minimum of six months commitment and students will AustChamThailand Advance

learn lots of new skills including how to survive in the outdoors ready for participating in the expedition as part of the Adventurous Journey section. This usually takes place in Thailand at one of the National Parks such as Khao Yai or Sam Roi Yot. Students go on to participate in the Silver Award which requires a higher level of commitment and encompasses more challenging expeditions. For Gold, students must continue to participate in a personal program of activities in four sections which are Service, Physical Recreation, Skills, and Adventurous Journey plus one extra section where they must participate in a Residential. One of the great things about the Award is being able to tailor the program to meet your

“Our group of six organised a cycle trip around Central Vietnam. We cycled around 100km each day, and it was really hard work - beautiful scenery but a lot of hills which were tough going. One of the roads had been covered with mud because of a landslide and we had to go right through it – everyone, including the bikes, ended up absolutely covered with mud!” For more information about International Award at Bangkok Patana School contact Tel: 02-3980200. Karyn Walker, Marketing, Alumni and Development Manager, Bangkok Patana School

December 2009


International School Supplement

Free and Open Software for Education With education styles developing towards collaboration and project based learning, where students take more responsibility for their own education, the use of open source tools makes sense. Students at KIS are taught according to the International Baccalaureate curriculum, where they strive to be: balanced, caring, communicators, open-minded, risk-takers, principled, reflective, inquirers, knowledgeable and thinkers. In addition, the program encourages transparency, international-mindedness and a strong sense of community.


n the earliest days of the computer era, both software and hardware developers were happy to share their software and the know-how to develop it. However things started to change when software packages came bundled with hardware and when copyright law was applied to software in the early eighties. Since then, there has been a divide between proprietary and “free” or “libre” software. FLOSS (Free/Libre Open Source Software) is defined as being free to use for any purpose and to adapt to one’s needs. While FLOSS may also cost nothing, the terms “Free” and ”Libre” imply the more ethical meaning of free to share and develop. FLOSS is no longer the realm of developers, hackers and IT experts alone. Many organisations which traditionally opted for proprietary software, such as Windows, are making the transition to FLOSS Solutions. The education sector in particular is shifting towards FLOSS. 18

December 2009

KIS International School is an example of a school using educational Open Source Software. The school has applied Free and Open Source solutions across the school community. KIS makes use of many different types, ranging from the operating system to general applications, educational applications, e-learning systems, a room booking system, a media gallery system, the database system, various blogs and pod casts and a Wikipedia system. Says Dr. Piyarat Khanthap, Head of IT at KIS International School: “Free and Open Source Software is not only much more cost-effective than proprietary software; it is arguably better than other software for education”. One of the reasons that KIS International School has chosen FLOSS over proprietary software is that its ethical foundation matches the philosophy of the school.

These attributes correspond to the way free software is developed. FLOSS is usually developed by teams who are eager and passionate about using their expertise to push software development. The developers are very principled in advocating the right to free software, in the same sense as a right to free speech. The importance of this freedom cannot be ignored, especially since a larger part of our lives today, including our social life, takes place online. Developers of FLOSS have communities in mind as they custom-make products and allow open use of these solutions. Using the Internet as their research lab, these people work across borders and promote internationalism. They are knowledgeable and thinkers in that they are the hubs of their respective fields and are highly skilled and respected. They are risk-takers for allowing their product to be microscopically analysed by others. The teams interact with other independent specialists to develop their software and, through the Internet, their work is open to scrutiny and questioning from anyone interested. This requires them to be open-minded, transparent and reflective. In addition to the ethical match, FLOSS solutions suit the needs of schools in general and KIS in particular. According to Dr. Khanthap: “We have AustChamThailand Advance

International School Supplement

switched to open source solutions throughout the entire school. There are applications for education as well as for administration. Teachers, students and staff have all readily made the transition. The applications are intuitive, effective and stable to use.” The Free and Open Source solutions are designed to meet the specific needs of users at a school: for the administration, in the classrooms, for the library and many more. There is FLOSS software for almost any need imaginable. Examples are varied and range from basic office applications like Open Office, to E-learning systems such as Moodle and educational packages to learn and practice various skills, including keyboarding, math, arts, humanities, problem-solving or programming. Where the solutions are not yet perfect for the organisation’s purpose the software may be changed, adapted and developed to meet the school’s needs.

AustChamThailand Advance

Dr. Kanthap gives another advantage that FLOSS has over proprietary software. “At school we always strive to inspire students. We have students who are interested in a career in IT, and they are very motivated by the opportunities FLOSS offers. Since the software allows the students to change the source code and adapt the programs to their own liking, they feel empowered and excited that anything is possible”. As a supporter of Free and Open Source Software KIS not only uses it in school, but also promotes the use of these free and legal solutions outside the school. The school provides a service to the Thai and international communities of users and potential users by implementing several public forums. Examples are: a Web forum, workshops and conferences, including the FLossEd (Free/Libre Open Source Solutions for Education) conference which was held in late October. These platforms provide feedback, discussion and support to users in education around the globe.

It is understandable that academic institutions are quick on the uptake of FLOSS and promote the development of these applications to a larger audience. They are preparing the youth of today to be decision makers of the future, advocating the freedom of choice when it comes to software solutions. The FLossEd Conference, a conference about Free and Open Source Software in education, was held from 31 October to 1 November 2009 at KIS International School. It was a two-day event organised by to share and learn about using these software solutions. Speakers came from various countries in the region and participating guests included teachers, old users, new users and IT specialists. For more information about the conference please visit http:// Linda Belonje Marketing and Development Director KIS Tel: +66 (0) 2274 3444

December 2009


Gold Sponsor’s News

dwp Brings Green Living to New Heights in Abu Dhabi


ulti-disciplinary and award winning architecture and interior design firm, design worldwide partnership (dwp), has announced that they have received a contract from aabar Investments to provide the architecture, environmental and interior design services for a 41 storey luxury residential tower in Saraya Abu Dhabi. The prominent location of Saraya 1, its proximity to the Arabian Coastline (Corniche), and it’s immediate context with the “Lagoon” Precinct, presented dwp with an opportunity to design a highly distinguished living experience that offers uninterrupted vistas of the waterfront and foreshore districts. The Saraya 1 Tower will offer optimum performance with the full integration of architectural design and engineering processes from early stages of the conceptual design through design development and construction. dwp’s UAE-based design team, led by Toufic Zaidan, have striven to reduce the effect on the operational energy demands and emissions of the building as well as ensuring its occupants wellbeing and comfort. The plot is located within the masterplanned community development of Sorouh Real estate PJSC under the project SARAYA, a high quality waterfront development, and a lively residential community built in a sustainable environment. According to Zaidan, “The smooth and slim undulating tower echoes the water it faces. Its curvilinear facade will vary in colours and shades according to the sun’s location and intensity. This intensity of climate has also made us look at the energy efficiencies and sustainability of its design”. In order to achieve a high performance, energy-efficient high-rise residential building, dwp adopted key principal design factors and strategies. The location of the site determined the design context: impacting on orientation and boundary, defining the building’s shape. dwp’s design of the overall façade uti20

December 2009

lises state-of-the art glass curtain walls with thermal insulation and the use of green and low-VOC building materials. The design team incorporated further energy efficiencies through the use of enclosed balconies that can optionally open up. Adopting an environment and ecological balance was important for the developer and dwp’s own brand of sustainable consciousness has developed a design that will aim for a Gold-rated LEED certification. Indoor air quality improvement with air filtration systems and natural ventilation, waste reduction and recycling strategies; the design of the structure and use of materials are all incorporated into the architectural DNA of the building. The sustainable use of water in such an arid environment is extremely important. The building collects and reuses rain water and façade condensation, it also has a grey water treatment facility for recycling and reuse. The use of green roofs, courtyards, sky gardens, naturally lit and transparent common areas and recreational facilities fosters community development:

Saraya Abu Dhabi will consist of 30 towers, that will include residential and commercial buildings ranging from 10 to 40 stories and hotels spread over 120,000 square metres. The project will be completed in phases. The construction of the towers will be completed in two phases, by 2010 and 2013. dwp currently has 125 residential, corporate and commercial projects ongoing throughout Asia Pacific, the Middle East and Africa. About dwp Established in 1994 in Bangkok Thailand, dwp (design worldwide partnership), is a multi-award winning integrated design company providing services in Architecture, Interior Design, Graphic Design, Facilities Planning, Project Management, Feasibilities Studies and Turnkey Design and Construction. With over 400 professionals servicing clients from their offices in the Middle East, Asia, India, China and Australia, dwp portfolio includes Lifestyle: residential, retail, hospitality; Community: architecture, museums, education, health; and Work: workplace, banking and finance. Office locations: Bahrain, Bangkok, Delhi, Dubai, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Melbourne, Mumbai, Shanghai, Singapore, Sydney.

AustChamThailand Advance

Community Services

AustCham ESB Charity Golf Open 2009 On 9 October 2009 the fourth annual AustCham ESB Charity Golf Open was held at Phoenix Golf Course prior to ESB Sundowners. Once again the ‘Birdie Boys’ walked away as the victors (see ESB Sundowners page for award presentation photos). Player numbers remained at last years record number of 140 and almost Baht 150,000 was raised for the Camillian Center near Pattaya, an orphanage and hospice for children suffering with AIDS and HIV. Special thanks to our ESB Co-ordinator Paul Wilkinson for his organisation of the day.

Thank you to our sponsors for supporting the ESB Charity Open 2009

Thank you to all prize/gift donors • • • • • •


Accor Asia Pacific BNH Hospital Centara Grand David Mills (Geodis Wilson) Do Time Hard Rock Hotel Pattaya

December 2009

• • • • • •

Holiday Inn Silom International Paint Jamesons Kasikorn Bank The Minor Food Group Novotel Suvarnabhumi

• • • • • •

Pathumwan Princess Hotel President Park Raja’s Fashions Red Mango Siam Ocean World Bangkok Weekender Resort & Spa

AustChamThailand Advance

Community Services

AustChamThailand Advance

December 2009


Chamber Events

ESB Sundowners at Holiday Inn Pattaya on 9 October 2009 On Friday 9 October 2009, Eastern Seaboard Sundowners (ESB) was held at Holiday Inn Pattaya. We thank AGS Four Winds International Moving (corporate sponsor) and Holiday Inn Pattaya (catering and venue sponsor) for their generous support. On the night, trophies and prizes were handed out to players from the ESB Charity Golf Open which was held earlier in the day at Phoenix Golf Course.

1) Andrew Durieux - AustCham President, Coverage; Craig Ryan - Holiday Inn Pattaya; HE Ambassador Paul Grigson - Australian Embassy Bangkok. 2) Hans Van Steertegem - Holiday Inn Pattaya; Khun Pattaravadee Wangviriyaphan - Bangkok Hospital Pattaya. 3) HE Ambassador Paul Grigson - Australian Embassy Bangkok; Ben Marshall - Metron Medical. 4) HE Ambassador Paul Grigson - Australian Embassy Bangkok; Mikael Andersson - ‘Birdie Boys’; Russell Exley - ‘Birdie Boys’; Jeremy Masse - ‘Birdie Boys’; Barry Traynor ‘Birdie Boys’. 5) Brett Gannaway - AustCham Executive Director; Peter Morley - Bumrungrad International; HE Ambassador Paul Grigson - Australian Embassy Bangkok; Karen Carter - Bumrungrad International. 6) John Pollard - Meinhardt; Steve Booth - CnetG Asia; Khun Ann - Five Star; David Jeffers - Five Star. 7) Paul Wilkinson - AGS Four Winds International Moving; Martin Rock. 8) Khun Supattra Rojjanateepthat - Holiday Inn Pattaya; Khun Jittikan Thongmalai - Waste Management Siam; Khun Sineenart Soontornnon - Bangkok Hospital Pattaya


December 2009

AustChamThailand Advance

Chamber Events

Natural Ville & LeNotre Ashes Golf Day The Natural Ville & LeNotre Ashes Golf Day was held on Thursday, 22 October 2009 at Muang Kaew Golf Course in conjunction with the British and New Zealand Chambers. Thanks to our Gold Sponsor: Natural Ville & LeNotre; our Silver Sponsors: Mazars Double Impact, Rolls Royce, Santa Fe, Siam Ocean World; and our Bronze Sponsors: Kinnaree Media Marketing and Raja’s Fashions. The local golfing version of the venerable Ashes competition pitted representatives from the British Chamber of Commerce against representatives of the combined Australian and New Zealand Chambers of Commerce in a friendly day of golf. At the end of the day, the Ashes remained in the hands of the British.

Thank you to our sponsors for supporting the day


December 2009

AustChamThailand Advance

Chamber Events

AustChamThailand Advance

December 2009


Chamber Events

Thai Australian Alumni Night on 22 October at Westin Grande Sukhumvit Our eighth Alumni networking function for Thai students who graduated from Australian institutions was held at Westin Grande Sukhumvit, Bangkok on Thursday 22 October 2009 and was generously sponsored by David Jones Beauty/Robinson. We hope that our Alumni networking nights will evolve into a forum where Thai graduates from Australian institutions can network and develop professionally, whilst contributing to Australian-Thai relations. c 60 y 95 Pantone 361 PC


December 2009

The guest speaker was Khun Mechai Viravaidya, Chairman of the Population & Community Development Association (PDA). Khun Mechai gave a short presentation on the Lamplaimat-Pattana Primary and Secondary schools in Buriram Province. The schools provide free private education to rural youth and are the focal point for community empowerment and poverty eradication.

AustChamThailand Advance

Chamber Events

Luncheon Meeting on 14 October 2009 On Wednesday 14 October 2009 AustCham Thailand was pleased to invite members and guests to a Luncheon Meeting at the The Sukhothai, Bangkok. Guest Speaker Khun Pichai Chuensuksawadi, Editor-in-Chief of Post Publishing, discussed “The Certainty & Uncertainty of Thai Politics”. Pichai Chuensuksawadi has been Editor-inChief of Post Publishing PCL in Bangkok since June 2002 - in overall charge of Bangkok Post and Post Today newspapers and their websites. Before that, he was Editor of the Bangkok Post, from 1994 until 2002. From 1984 to 1994, he held a number of other positions at the newspaper, including: Perspectives Editor, News Editor (local news), Foreign Affairs reporter, Writer and Copy Editor among others. During 1993-1994, he was Special Assistant to the Secretary General of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Dato’ Ajit Singh in Jakarta, Indonesia. He is also a Member of the IFRA Asia

Committee, Chairman of the Bangkok Post Provident Fund, Chairman of the Bangkok Post Foundation and Vice Chairman of the Phud Hong Leper Foundation. He was a Member of the Press Council of Thailand from 1998 until 2002.

Breakfast Briefing on 20 October 2009 On Tuesday 20 October 2009 AustCham Thailand was pleased to invite members and guests to attend a Breakfast Briefing and Webinar (web seminar transmitted over the internet) at the AustCham office. Guest Speaker Mick Tonkin, A++ Software Co., Ltd. discussed “Accounting problems facing SME companies in Thailand”. The talk was based upon Mick’s hands on experience and covered the following topics: complying with Thai Revenue Department requirements; accounting staff and language; advantages and disadvantages of accounting services; and using accounting software as a management tool. For more detailed information on these topics please see the ‘Business Brief’ at the front of this month’s issue. To view a recording of the Briefing, please visit the ‘News’ section of the AustCham website: 30

December 2009

AustChamThailand Advance

Chamber Events

Phuket Seminar and Sundowners on 30 October 2009 On Friday 30 October 2009, Phuket Sundowners was held at Hog’s Breath Café, Patong. We thank Hog’s Breath Cafe (catering and venue sponsor) for their generous support. Thank you also to Lady Pie for providing additional catering. Prior to Sundowners Mark Wood (Trade Commissioner and Counsellor (Commercial), Austrade) gave an update on business opportunities and the free trade agreement between Australia, New Zealand and ASEAN at Millennium Resort, Patong.


December 2009

AustChamThailand Advance

Chamber Events



Bangkok Sundowners at ‘Lotus Garden’ Centara Grand on 4 November 2009 On Wednesday 4 November 2009, Bangkok Sundowners was held at ‘Lotus Garden’, Centara Grand & Bangkok Convention Centre at CentralWorld. We thank Qantas/British Airways (corporate sponsor) and Centara Grand (catering and venue sponsor) for their generous support.



1) James Molony - Kingfield; Neil Ager - Qantas/British Airways. 2) Khun Supeepun Pooripanyawanich - Qantas/British Airways; Khun Hataichanok Pornrattanapant - Qantas/British Airways; Khun Orawan Puangweerakul - Qantas/British Airways; Khun Supa Chaisittiporn - Qantas/British Airways. 3) Khun Porntip Utsahaphan - Samitivej; Kritikar Thananan - Double 8 Realty; Siti Survo - Bumrungrad; Julie Chabra - Samitivej. 4) Tanya Suvannapong - HASSELL; John Anderson - AustCham Vice President, Meinhardt; Silvio Reale - VDA; Phillip Hannaford - HASSELL. 5) Khun Charn Saralertsophon - FTI; Khun Seksan Tammakoon - Past AustCham Director; Ben Yong - AustCham


December 2009

AustChamThailand Advance

Chamber Events








Director, Baker & McKenzie; M.L. Laksasubha Kridakon - AustCham Director, Baan Laksasubha Resort. 6) Warwick Kneale - Baker Tilly; Antonio Calderazzo - Designers Bathware; Gerry Healy - Raimon Land; Richard Wallace - Marriot. 7) Khun Apisiree - Centara Grand; Khun Kuntika - Centara Grand. 8) Caryn Louise Taylor - Servcorp; Warwick Baglin - Meinhardt. 9) Khun Karouna Manikhot - dwp; Paul Anslow Meinhardt. 10) David Wright - Past AustCham President, The Wright Public Relations; Andrew Durieux - AustCham President, Coverage. 11) Amanda Canavan - energidesign; Belinda Skinner - AustCham Director, Talent Plus Recruitment.

AustChamThailand Advance

December 2009


Members’ Offers

Festive Season Special Offers Centara Grand, Centralworld New Year’s Eve at 55 and New Year Countdown Promotion at Red Sky December 31, 2009. New Year’s Eve Dinner: Celebrate the New Year in style at 55 with a 6-course Degustation menu (such as foie gras “au naturel”, lobster millefeuille, fines de claires ravioli, wagyu beef sirloin) from 5555++ per person. From 18:30 onwards. Red Sky Bar New Year’s Countdown (outdoor rooftop) 1,555++/ person cover charge. For information/reservations please call: 02 100 6255.

dusitD2 baraquda pattaya D’vine X’mas: Enjoy our not to be missed holiday menu creatively prepared by executive chef Alan Ho. And revel with party-goers in Thailand’s only underwater themed bar from 20-26 December 2009. 5-course dinner Baht 1,200++, 3-course lunch Baht 800++ (from 20-26 December 2009). New Year’s Eve Dazzling 2010: Usher in 2010 and celebrate at dusitD2 baraquda pattaya in a party like no other! Baht 6,500++, 7-course dinner, extravagant performances, thriving lucky draw prizes.

enticing holiday menus in our restaurants. Capping off the holiday season, exquisite New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day dining and entertainment options are offered throughout the hotel.

Ph: 02 656 0444, Email: Webs:

For reservations, please call 02 126 8866 ext. 1517 or Email

Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok now offers nine innovative venues for your celebrations with our Grand Celebrations Packages. Special Priveleges include: Complimentary dinners and brunches for minimum spends for functions. Valid until 30 December 2009. Please contact us for further details: Tel: 02 254 1234, Email:

Grand Millennium Sukhumvit Bangkok Great deals for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day at our restaurants (and for hotel stays). Ph: +66 2 204 4000, Email: hotel@grandmillenniumskv. com, Website: www.

For information please call: +66 38 769 999 InterContinental Bangkok Celebrate New Year’s Eve in style at Fireplace Grill. Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok is the perfect place to ring in the season. Celebrate Christmas Eve and Day with family and friends as our talented chefs present

Oasis rooftop bar at midnight. Baht 100,000++/ celebration package for 10 persons.

Have an exclusive private party that starts from a limousine pick up, five Grande Deluxe rooms for an overnight stay, private gourmet personalised dinner of your choice for ten persons with, countdown at

The Landmark Bangkok Christmas Day Celebration: RR&B: Western Buffet Brunch - Served from 11.30 am – 3.00 pm, at only Baht 2,900++ per adult and Baht 1,200++ per child including free flow of soft drinks. New Year’s Eve Celebration: RR&B - A la carte 3-course menu for only Baht 3,900++ per person. Exclusive five-course set dinner at Baht 6,000++ per person. For reservations, please call 0-2254-0404 ext. 7777 or Email:

Plaza Athenee Bangkok Eat, drink and be merry at our inspiring Christmas and New Year events featuring gourmet cuisine and a satisfying selection of stylish venues. Be creative, surprise and delight when you bring your family to celebrate with ours during a fabulous festive season at The Rain Tree Café and The Reflexions on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year ’s Eve and New Year day. For further information and reservations, please call 0 2650 8800 ext. 4302 or e-mail:

Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit This Christmas and New Year, discover a world of enticing culinary delights. Our six renowned dining venues which

are Orchid Café, basil, Rossini’s, The Living room, The Sala and BarSu will offer delicious traditional cuisine to ensure a memorable festive season for the whole family. Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit is the place to celebrate Christmas and ring in 2010 in style! AustCham Members receive a 20% discount on food and beverage when booking before December 20th. For reservations, please call 02 6498368.

The Sukhothai Bangkok Spend an enjoyable holiday season in the heart of Bangkok. With luxurious accommodation, fine food, spa pampering and you can shop till you drop with discount privileges from 10 December 2009 – 31 January 2010. For more details and reservations, please email to or visit

The Westin Grande Sukhumvit Christmas and New Year is a time for sharing laughter and joyous celebration with family and friends. Join us this festive season for days and nights of inspired dining, sparkling entertainment, and beautiful decorations at the Westin Grande Sukhumvit, Bangkok. For details on great deals please contact us: Phone: 0 2207 8000, Email: Website: bangkok

Please note, all details are subject to change, please contact respective businesses directly for latest details.


December 2009

AustChamThailand Advance

New Members and Members’ Changes

NEW CORPORATE ORDINARY MEMBERS Metron Medical Co., Ltd. 700/15 Moo 6 Amata Nakorn Industrial Estate T. Nong Mai-Deang, Muang Chonburi 2000 Tel: +66 38 744 215-216 Fax: +66 38 743 042 Email:

insurance services, construction and renovation, work permits, visas, wills and a full range of property maintenance services. We are founding members of the Real Estate Broker Association, Eastern Seaboard. We recently opened an office in Angeles City in the Philippines and our long term plan is to have offices in most of the developing Asian countries. Change of Representative

Principal: Benjamin Matshall Alternate: On-Uma (June) Wongpaksa

Northern Thai Realty & Export Co., Ltd. 215/15-18 Second Road South Pattaya, Chonburi 20260 Tel: +66 38 426 242, 425 836 Fax: +66 38 426 243 Email: Website:

Mr. Ruth Chaowanagawi, Country Managing Partner is a new representative of Ernst & Young Corporate Services Limited. Mr. Nat Vanitchyangkul, Managing Director is a new representative of ERM-Siam Co., Ltd. Mr. Tom Whitcraft, Director is a new representative of Global Fleet Sales Co., Ltd. Mr. Torsten Pinter, General Manager is a new representative of Swissotel Nai Lert Park Bangkok. Mr. Eric Jordan, Managing Director is a new representative of Professional Portfolio International Limited.

Principal: John Seymour Alternate: Noochin Noisena The company was formed in 1985 under the name Northern Thai Handicrafts and started trading from their premises on Second Road, Pattaya. After a few years of trading the business changed direction and started selling real estate. In 1991, the company changed its name to Northern Thai Realty and Export Co., Ltd., and concentrated its efforts into real estate and associated services. We are still trading from the same premises and now offer a one stop shop for all property related services. These include, the largest and longest established real estate company on the eastern seaboard. We provide

AustChamThailand Advance

Ms. Sudamani Bisalputra, Executive Advisor is a new representative of PanAust Ltd. Khun Saksit Siriprayoonsak, Chief Financial Officer is a new representative of HydroGreenergy Co., Ltd. Mr. John Quarmby, Vice President is a new representative of Schenker (Thai) Ltd. Mr. Marcel Oliver Grotz, Removals Manager is a new representative of Schenker (Thai) Ltd.

Change of Company Name Ernst & Young Limited changed company name to be Ernst & Young Corporate Services Limited. AngloINFO Bangkok changed company name to be AngloINFO Bangkok, Pattaya & Phuket. Change of Company Address PFJ Asia Pacific Co., Ltd. 64/11 Mall 3 (Free Zone) Gemopolis Industrial Estate Dokmai, Pravet, Bangkok 10250 Tel: +66 2 727 0340 Fax: +66 2 727 0343 Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited Athenee Tower 19th Floor, unit 1904 63 Wireless Road, Lumpini Pathumwan, Bangkok 10330 Tel: +66 2 168 8777-8 Fax: +66 2 168 8780 Simplicity International Company Limited 3rd Floor, Thaiart Building 8/3 Rajdapisek Rd., Kwang Klongtoey, Khet Klongtoey Bangkok 10110 PanAust Ltd. c/o Puthep Co. Ltd CTI Tower, 26th-27th Floor 191/18-25 Ratchadapisek Road Klong Toei, Bangkok 10110 Tel: +66 2 661 8311 Fax +66 2 661 8312 gH design Sukhumvit House, 5th Floor, Rm 5B 128/25 Soi 23 Sukhumvit Road Klongtuey Nua, Wattana Bangkok 10110 Tel +66 2 665 2998

Ms. Bharadee Udomphornvirat, Director of Sales & Marketing is a new representative of Chatrium Residence Bangkok - Sathon.

December 2009


Calendar of Events

From the Chamber Office

Message from the ED


ith the weather improving and the cool season fast approaching we saw the first of our outdoor events for the season in the “Lotus Garden” on the 26th Floor, Centara Grand & Bangkok Convention Centre at Central World. I would also like to thank QANTAS for their sponsorship of the evening as well as the door prize of two return tickets to Australia and congratulations to the lucky winner. Our Christmas Sundowner will be held at another amazing outdoor location in the Garden at the Sukhothai Hotel. There has been an incredible response to the 2010 Corporate and Sundowners Sponsorship letters that were sent out earlier last month. Thank you to all those companies, both old and new, who will be continuing their support. If you are interested in taking advantage of Company exposure and great value by becoming one of the AustCham Corporate sponsors for 2010, for a Sundowner, or even a major event sponsor, do not hesitate to contact me directly at: execdirector@austchamthailand. com For those of you, who will be staying in Bangkok over the Christmas break, please make sure to read the special offers on page 36 of this month’s issue of Advance. There are some fantastic deals from our Sundowners venue sponsors on what to do for Christmas and New Year. There are only a couple of months before the Australia Day Ball, so make sure you

start thinking of your costume for the Heroes themed event. The ball will be held next year on Saturday, 30 January 2010 at the Dusit Thani Grand Ballroom with tickets going on sale very shortly. Make sure that you log on to our website for full details and updates. Well I cannot believe that 2009 has gone by so quickly and that we are now rounding into 2010. As we close out the year, we once again find AustCham in a strong position with well over four hundred member companies and an extended database of over three and a half thousand; extremely well attended events and great support from the Australian business community here in Thailand. Thank you all for your continued support to the chamber throughout what has proven to be one of the most challenging years to say the least. So, on behalf of all of the Chamber staff, we would like to wish everybody all the best over the festive season, safe travels and we look forward to working with all of you again in the New Year.

WEDNESDAY, 2 DECEMBER Christmas Sundowners

18.00 – 21.00 Corporate Sponsor: dwp Catering & Venue Sponsor: The Sukhothai SATURDAY, 12 DECEMBER Voluntary English Teaching

Venue: Baan Khao Huay Mahad School, Rayong TUESDAY, 12 JANUARY Tri Nations BBQ

18.00 – Onwards Venue: TBC SATURDAY, 30 JANUARY Australia Day Ball

Theme: Heroes Unleash the Hero Within Venue: Dusit Thani, Bangkok WEDNESDAY, 3 FEBRUARY Bangkok Sundowners

18.00 – 21.00 Venue: TBC THURSDAY, 11 FEBRUARY Thai-Australian Alumni Night

18.30 – 20.30 Venue: TBC FRIDAY, 12 FEBRUARY ESB Sundowners

18.00 – 21.00 Venue: TBC SATURDAY, 13 FEBRUARY Voluntary English Teaching

Brett Gannaway Executive Director, AustCham Thailand

Venue: TBC

Thank you to all November event sponsors


December 2009

AustChamThailand Advance

ADVANCE - December 2009  

Advance is AustCham Thailand's high profile monthly magazine. It outlines the Chamber's activities and provides information on pertinent bus...