Issuu on Google+

BANGKOK

BUSINESS BRIEF

Vol. No. 2, Issue No. 9

Mid-August/September 2013

Read new business briefs everyday at www.BBBrief.com

The rise of Isan

Photo by Philip Roeland from Flickr under Creative Commons License

By Navin Johnson

For much of its history, Thailand has marched to the beat of the Bangkok drum. Krung Thep Maha Nakhon has been the political, cultural and economic center of the

Inside General Interest 2 Government/Economy 3 Finance/Investment 4 Production 5 Retail/Services 6 Tourism 7 Real Estate 8 IT/Comms 9 The Chambers 10 The Calendar 14

Kingdom for hundreds of years. It has set the tone, started the trends, and driven the economy. And for much of that time, the rural northeast has been the poor backwater of the country, what Lonely Planet travel guides famously described as “a forgotten backyard.” Despite having the largest area and being the most populated region with a third of Thailand’s 68 million people, Isan (or Isaan) has never attracted much attention from the outside world… until now. In recent years, after the red shirt protests in 2010 and the flooding in 2011, Isan has been attracting investment, not only from major Thai corporations, but from foreign investors as well. In short,

Isan is booming. While the most cynical observer would argue that the rise of Isan is happening because of ‘political strategy’ at best, and ‘political manipulation’ at worst, it’s hard to ignore the factors that are contributing to Isan’s economic growth. Government money is certainly pouring into the region through a combination of subsidies and economic stimulus programs, the two most well known being the minimum wage increase and the rice scheme. Despite the debate as to the effectiveness of these two programs for the rural poor in the region, there seems to be little doubt that

this influx of capital is stimulating other areas of the Isan economy. The flooding in central Thailand in 2011 has also had an affect on Isan. New factories and industrial estates have opened in the region, and logistics providers and other manufacturers have moved to the northeast as a direct consequence of the devastating floods two years ago. This economic development has seen an increase in the labor force in the region with many workers returning home after years working in the capital. Isan is now able to compete with Bangkok in the labor Story continues on Page 13

w w w. i s s i m p l e . c o

All-in-One, Touch Kiosk, Video Wall, AD LCD, 3D LCD, 4K LCD

INTERACTIVE Presentation

CLOUD READY Digital Signage

TABLET PC Digital Menu

+66 8 5332 1554, 02 810 3377, contact@issimple.co


2

BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF

Briefs General Interest

http://goo.gl/ozbNM

Experts call for Asia-based models

Asian companies need to invent their own business models for longterm sustainability, models that address social and environmental costs, highlight brand building, and capitalise on the diversity of Asian culture, said panellists at The Nation International Conf. New models are a must as Asia has to strengthen its resilience to global uncertainties, which are not likely to end soon as long as most global trade is denominated in US dollars, agreed participants. “Asia is going to be a primary engine of growth, but that growth can come to a sputtering stop if our business models are not sustainable,” said Ho Kwon Ping, exec. chairman of Banyan Tree Holdings. Asia may be driving the world, it is possible that it may “drive itself off the road and end up in a car crash”, he said.

www.BBBrief.com

Mid-August/September 2013

To read the full article of a story brief, enter the short code at the end of the story into your browser: Citing computer giant Dell’s recent potential takeover as a cautionary tale, Ho stated that Asia must make a conscious commitment to... Full story at http://goo.gl/E3tfGx

Urine proves fertile ground for students

Quite often we see men urinating openly in dark corners, giving natural fertiliser to the bushes and trees alongside streets. So if urine can be used to grow crops, why not pee in gardens instead of disposing of it elsewhere? Students at King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi thought that idea less realistic, so they ended up producing an alternative _ Thailand’s first men’s urinals equipped with a fertiliser producer. The innovation received a creativity award at a water management innovation competition held for the third year by the Natural Resources and Environment Ministry and East Water Resources Development and Management Plc. Bussarakam Kunwong, a fourth-year student in

...added that the company had set aside a significant investment budget of Bt200 million to Bt300 million for overseas expansion. Full story at http://goo.gl/bH6PF

goo.gl/bH6PF

KMUTT’s engineering faculty, said the innovation was developed from a project she created during her second year. She devised a water-recycling system for flushing by using... Full story at http://goo.gl/y5VUi

managers need to address this issue proactively, or else your best people will burn out or walk away.”

New research by Hay Group has found that 27% at companies not perceived as fostering a satisfactory work-life balance leave the firm within two years. As well, most employees in Thailand do not feel their organisations support a satisfactory work-life balance.

Is foreign tax credit relief available in Thailand? The answer is yes. If you pay tax in two or more countries due to cross-border business travel, the first question that pops up in your mind is which country should provide tax relief to you. The simple answer is that generally it is the country where you are a tax resident. In the case of a Thai working outside Thailand and subject to tax in another country, if he maintains Thai tax resident status, which is staying in Thailand for 180 days or more in the tax year, Thailand must grant the tax relief. However, Thailand will only grant relief in the form of a foreign tax credit if a... Full story at http://goo.gl/yX07X

She said firms must start by asking... Full story at http://goo.gl/q1Yxz

Survey: Work-life How to be sure balance concerns you’re not paying tax growing among staff in two countries

“Only 47% of employees feel that their organisations support them in achieving a work-life balance,” said Nongnuch Obsuwan, a senior consultant at the Pennsylvaniabased firm. “Organisations need to ensure better support more than ever before and be aware that the importance of a work-life balance to employees is increasing. Direct

+66 2207 1023


2

BANGKOK BU SINESS BRIEF

December 20 11

Briefs 3

BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF Mid-August/September 2013 General Inte

Use the QR Code reader in your smartphone to see all the stories in a certain category.

Government / Economy

http://goo.gl/EIbH6

56 Phuket firms suspected of breaching FBA The Commerce Ministry said 56 companies in Phuket are suspected of breaching the Foreign Business Act by having Thais acting as nominees so that foreigners can hold majority control. A total of 153 companies were investigated by the ministry. Most of the suspected companies are owned by Russian interests, and are involved in food and beverage trading, and financial agencies, Deputy Commerce Minister Natthawut Saikua said. The Business Development Department will deepen its investigation into all 56 companies by questioning their directors and examining documentation. If any of the businesses have committed offences, their cases will be forwarded to state agencies for prosecution, he said. Among the 56 suspected companies in Phuket, 24 firms have been set up this year and are not yet operating, 13 conduct a business listed in Annex III of the FBA, eight have not cooperated in the investigation,... Full story at http://goo.gl/7wjx4

Despite slowdown, China reform aims for long-term gains

Imagine for a moment that you could look into the economic future of China. What would you find in say five years? Some commentators talk of bubbles and crisis, but we see an economy with more diversified financial markets that welcome foreign participation, a place where the urban middle classes spend more and save less. Well-funded private investment would flourish in areas that were previously the domain of state-owned industrial giants. We also see a China that is comfortable with having a fully convertible currency and allows its citizens to invest overseas. In short, a nation with a leadership confident about opening up the country’s financial system and at ease with China’s place in the world economy. But how will this happen? After all, the

rest

To read the fu ll article of a story brief, enter the shor t code at the end the story into your browser: of liam Shakespe are

...added that the set aside a signi company had budget of Bt20 ficant investment million for over0 million to Bt300 seas expansion Full story at http: . //goo.gl/bH6PF

goo.gl/bH6P

F

Nature and life in JuliusCaesar. 1997-98 wa are cyclical _ the impact of s a blessing, as the mains seasons of the yea 2008 would ha above the Europ the phases of the r, life and death, far worse ve been ean average. for the region, mo http://goo.gl/o on, the tides. ” Azman In Caught up in da zbNM India, China ily details, we eas Mokhtar, the managing and Thailand, ily forget that dir ect of or Kh Asia stands to rou aza ghly 12 percent nah the business wo of has cycles, too. rld told the CI Nasional of Malaysia, tion contribute to a the populaWe are all fam MB Asean Confe gain from W pension, while iliar with the econo rence. the we es t mi ak c ne bu sse sin s ess of cycle His com slowdown of expansion, con sion system are Thailand’s penments were... ... covery. Howe traction and re- Full story Full story at htt The shift of eco ver, other cyc at http://goo.gl/d nomic growth p:/ /goo.gl/rtpH3 lic ph al fu2 en u om ena affect... momentum to the Thailand near Preventing up numerous East has opened Full story at http://goo.gl/fJ to p opportunities olr of list of wor that Asian countries Bangkok from out, suggests an should not miss Panel: Asia bett weakest pensld’s sinking bigges economist. io off, not immun er n t systems: stud challenge The robust eco y from global cr e, no Greece, India, Ch Land subsidence China and em mic growth of is es ina and Thailand erging economi caused by groun are home to the water losses top will open a ne es KUALA LUMPUR : The As d weake w s ian cri- pensi on systems in st national lems that must the list of probAsian economi opportunity for sis in the late 1990s was a wa es to increase the be the kesol cal up ved wo l for in rld cri Ba , the region that pp wealth from tra ir has turned eig led by a mix of acute sover- kok to mitigate the impact ngde in goods an out to be of the n debt, young climate change services at a tim a blessing in d retire dis e on States and Europ when the United nearly 15 years later, as the guise high ratios of pension ment ages, a study by multin flooding, says region’s ers an ers to worke ational agencies financial sec Full story at htt are... d . p://goo.gl/S65D6 able to sus tor is now strong and study poor pension take-up, a The conclusio showed. tain a certain n de is gre contained in of shocks from e Grow with th a rep ort the entitled “Clim e flow Western Hemi fallout in the The Allianz ate Risks and Ad of cycles sphere, accord ing sion Susta Global Investors Pen- Megac aptation in Asian Coastal to a panellist at a recent As inability Index, ities”, jointly con ‘There is a tid ean conference. ducted by the which Asian De tracks the rel e velop ati men, which, tak in the affairs of ity of nationa ve sustainabil- Internation ment Bank, the Japan l al leads on to for en at the flood, “There wi in 44 countries pension systems and the Wo Cooperation Agency ll be more crises tune”, wrote Wi around the wo rld Bank in 201 l- future, an in the showe rld, 0. d the Asian crisis in tirees d the number of Greek reThe report recom to people of wo rking age reFull story at htt mended a... p://goo.gl/20yMD Sponsored by

...

China of today is dominated by big state-owned banks and companies, a clogged-up credit system, hard to access stock and bond markets, interest rates that have yet to be fully liberalised and a currency that is only just starting to be let off a tight leash. The answer is through reform. The country’s new leaders have... Full story at http://goo.gl/cY1jD

UNCTAD recommendation Thailand ‘must develop 10 areas’

The head of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development has recommended that Thailand develop 10 areas to become a real hub of Asean and bring more trade and investment into the region. ASEAN has been urged to adopt four key strategies to ensure achievement of ASEAN integration by 2015. Supachai Panitchpakdi, secretary-general of Unctad, said that Thailand has a lot of potential to link the regional value chain. It should promote more value-addition in various industries such as automobile, medical and retail sectors, which can add value to all ASEAN countries. Second, he said economic corridors of the Greater mekong Subregion will significantly contribute to making Thailand a hub of Asean. The only obstacle now is the software side, such as regulations, which... Full story at http://goo.gl/dQbgv

Snakebit tycoons urge caution

Leading businessmen who lost most of their empire during the tom yum kung crisis are warning of a nascent economic bubble, blaming policies that have encouraged consumers to take on debt while the government borrows hugely to spur the economy. Boonchai Bencharongkul, a founder of No.2 mobile operator Total Access Communication, voiced concern about a potential new crisis forming. “I think the current situation is worrisome. As one of those who had such an experience, I can smell it now. People are rushing and competing to buy condos while more and more people are driving Ferraris. These are the same things we saw before the 1997 crisis occurred,” Mr Boonchai told a forum. He said populist policies such... Full story at http://goo.gl/G83Ao

Corporate Restructuring -Turnaround | Cash Monitoring Feasibility Studies & Valuations | NPL Sales | Mergers & Acquistions Due Dilligence | Fund-raising | Accounting Service Statutory Audit | Tax Advice | Outsourced Payroll Services For enquiries in Thailand & Myanmar, please contact: Baker Tilly Consulting (Myanmar) Limited Warwick Kneale B502 Evergreen Pun Hlaing Estate Hlaing Tharyar Township Yangoon, Myanmar Tel: (IDD) +951 687 732 Estate Line: +951 684 206 ext.3222 Mobile: +959 4 2530 4193


4

BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF

Briefs Finance / Investment

www.BBBrief.com

Mid-August/September 2013

To read the full article of a story brief, enter the short code at the end of the story into your browser:

were no exception. The SET index fell by 2.47%, while government bond yields at longer maturities jumped more than 10 basis points in http://goo.gl/wKeiJ one day. The baht lost 0.55% against the US dollar in a day, continuing its As QE3 winds down, weakening trend since its mid-April peak. All attention was focused on Is bank liquidity in the stock, bond and foreign-exdanger of draining change markets, but such routs in out of Thailand? the main arena have distracted us... When it comes to communicating Full story at http://goo.gl/Ki3L9 monetary policy, no one makes it clearer than Ben Bernanke, chair- BAY eyes bigger man of the US Federal Reserve. Japanese client base Signalling the beginning of the end Bank of Ayudhya, the country’s of QE3, Mr Bernanke sent shock- fifth-largest commercial bank, waves through financial markets on hopes an early benefit once Bank of May 29 when he said the Fed may Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ becomes its moderate its monthly pace of asset new major shareholder is that it will purchases this year. If that was not be able to tap into the strong emterrifying enough for investors, he ployee base of Japanese companies went on to say the Fed may stop in Thailand, which will lead to crossthe third round of quantitative eas- selling in retail banking. A source at ing altogether in mid-2014. Right BAY said the bank sees a number of after Mr Bernanke spoke, yields on advantages from the deal, especially government bonds including highly in terms of gaining customers from coveted US Treasuries jumped as both Japanese firms in Thailand and investors demanded higher risk pre- the employees of those companies, miums. Thailand’s financial markets which will boost the bank’s pay-roll

...added that the company had set aside a significant investment budget of Bt200 million to Bt300 million for overseas expansion. Full story at http://goo.gl/bH6PF

accounts. The pay-roll account is a basic product that could help broaden the cross-selling of products in retail banking, especially auto loans and unsecured loans. “After the tender offer is complete, we will look forward to a synergy in retail banking with the new shareholder, with a larger number of Japanese manufacturers in Thailand initially being the focus of BAY in... Full story at http://goo.gl/ziXQQ

Citibank suggests transfer to equities

Citibank suggests investors shift their assets from bonds to equities for higher returns from long-term investment in these times of uncertainty. “Plenty of liquidity around the world will spur stock markets globally,” said Haren Shah, Citibank’s chief investment strategist for wealth management in AsiaPacific. Global equities are expected to continue to outperform other asset classes in the second half of this year despite high valuations in recent years. “Therefore, investors

goo.gl/bH6PF

should overweight on equity assets on global markets and underweight those that are fixed income,” said Mr Shah. Global liquidity is expected... Full story at http://goo.gl/gxpbH

Investors ‘must focus on region’

Thai investors should consider investing in regional bonds and stock markets to soften the blows caused by fluctuating capital flows, said Kobsidthi Silpachai, head of market and economic research at Kasikornbank. Investors currently focus on local markets and assets, although Asean integration has led to collaboration among regional markets and the opportunity to make returns from regional assets. “The development of regional bond and stock markets has fallen behind regional trade and investment such as imports and exports,” Mr Kobsidthi said. “Thai entrepreneurs have established strong trading channels with neighbouring countries, but they have neglected investing in regional in regional capital markets.... Full story at http://goo.gl/ny5bJ

PPi

Professional Portfolio International

P P I strive s to h e lp e a ch clie n t g ro w, p ro te ct & e n jo y th e ir we a lth in th e ir o wn wa y & a ch ie ve fin a n cia l fre e d o m. De live rin g th e h ig h e st le ve l o f fin a n ci al p la n n in g and we a lth ma n a g e me nt se rvice s to clie n ts a ro u n d th e g lo b e .

Innovative Prod u ct s/ Solu t ion s

Wealth Management

Alternative Investment Strategies

Medical Insurance

Education Fees Planning

Pension Transfers

International Banking

Portfolio Management

Investment Property

Retirement Planning

Life Insurance

Trusts

For more information please contact:

PPI

i n f o @ p p i - a d v i s o r y. c o m +662 664 0968 +662 260 7769 w w w. p p i - a d v i s o r y. c o m Professional

Portfolio International (PPI)

209/1 K Tower, Tower B, 19th Fl. Unit 4, Sukhumvit 21 Rd.(Asoke) Klongtoey Nua Wattana, Bangkok 10110, Thailand

w w w.p p i-a d v iso ry.c o m


2

BANGKOK BU SINESS BRIEF

December 20 11

Briefs 5

BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF Mid-August/September 2013 General Inte

Use the QR Code reader in your smartphone to see all the stories in a certain category.

Production

rest

To read the fu ll article of a story brief, enter the shor t code at the end the story into your browser: of liam Shakespe are

goo.gl/bH6P FOR F MORE

Nature and life in JuliusCaesar. 1997-98 wa are cyclical _ INFORMATION the impact of s a blessing, as the mains seasons of the yea 2008 would ha above the Europ the phases of the r, life and death, far worse ve been ean average. for mo the 02 653 1971 http://goo.gl/o on, the tides. region,” Azma Caught up in da zbNM n In Ind ily details, we eas Mokhtar, the managing ily forget that director rough ia, China and Thailand, Asia stands to the business wo - of Khazanah Nasional of Malaysia, tio ly 12 percent of the populahas cycles, too. rld told the CI n contribute to We are all fam MB Asean Confe gain from W a pension, while iliar with the econo rence. the we mi aknesses of Th slowdown est of expansion, con c business cycle His comme ailand’s pensio n system are... nts were... traction and recov ery. However, Full story at htt Full story at htt The shift of eco other cyclical p://goo.gl/dfu2 nomic growth p:/ /go ph o.g en l/rtpH3 u om ena affect... momentum to the Thailand near Preventing up numerous East has opened Full story at http://goo.gl/fJ to p opportunities olr of list of wor that Asian countries Bangkok from out, suggests an should not miss Panel: Asia bett weakest pensld’s sinking bigges economist. io off, not immun er n t systems: stud challenge The robust eco y from global cr e, no Greece, India, Ch Land subsidence China and em mic growth of is es ina and Thailand erging economi caused by groun are home to the water losses top will open a ne es KUALA LUMPUR : The As d weake w s ian cri- pensi on systems in st national lems that must the list of probAsian economi opportunity for sis in the late 1990s was a wa es to increase the be the kesol cal up ved wo l for in rld cri Ba , the region that pp wealth from tra ir has turned eig led by a mix of acute sover- kok to mitigate the impact ngde in goods an out to be of the n debt, young climate change services at a tim a blessing in d retire dis e on States and Europ when the United nearly 15 years later, as the guise high ratios of pension ment ages, a study by multin flooding, says region’s ers an ers to worke ational agencies financial sec Full story at htt are... d . p://goo.gl/S65D6 able to sus tor is now strong and study poor pension take-up, a The conclusio showed. tain a certain n de is gre contained in of shocks from e Grow with th a rep ort the entitled “Clim e flow Western Hemi fallout in the The Allianz ate Risks and Ad of cycles sphere, accord ing sion Susta Global Investors Pen- Megac aptation in Asian Coastal to a panellist at a recent As inability Index, ities”, jointly con ‘There is a tid ean conference. ducted by the which Asian De tracks the rel e velop ati men, which, tak in the affairs of ity of nationa ve sustainabil- Internation ment Bank, the Japan l al leads on to for en at the flood, “There wi in 44 countries pension systems and the Wo Cooperation Agency ll be more crises tune”, wrote Wi around the wo rld Bank in 201 l- future, an in the showe rld, 0. d the Asian crisis in tirees d the number of Greek reThe report recom to people of wo rking age reFull story at htt mended a... p://goo.gl/20yMD Sponsored by

...

Pfizer’s local boss likes prospects for pills

Pfizer (Thailand), a biopharmaceutical company, remains optimistic Ch. Karnchang about its healthcare business despite signs of declining purchasing powready for third General manager Krit Matatratip Laos power project er. said the distributor of Caltrate calCh. Karnchang Plc, Thailand’s third- cium tablets is confident its prodlargest contractor by market value, ucts will continue to enjoy greater is set to sign a development agree- growth than the industry as a whole. ment for the 17-billion-baht Nam Bak power project in Laos. The sign- First-half sales were weak in seving with the Laotian government in eral categories, but Mr Krit sees Vientiane on Aug 8 will pave the many factors that can benefit the way for a concession agreement, company’s health-care operations. with construction due to begin later He cited the rise in middle-income this year. The 160-megawatt plant earners, especially in the provincwill be the third hydropower project es, and growing urbanisation due of holding company CK Power Plc to the property and retail boom in Laos following the Nam Ngum upcountry. The upcoming Asean 2 and Xayaburi projects. With a single market in 2016 is expected capacity of 1,285 MW, Xayaburi is to ease the regional drug business scheduled to operate in 2019. since member countries tend to rely on the same rules. “As Thailand is CKP managing director Supamas located in a strategic location, the... Trivisvavet said the company is Full story at http://goo.gl/7Bo3I studying the possibility of investing in new power projects in neighbour- Honda begins ing countries with a combined ca- construction of pacity of 1,000 MW. It plans to have new plant in capacity of 2,300 MW in the next Prachin Buri 5-6 years and more than 4,000... Full story at http://goo.gl/sCP06 Honda Automobile (Thailand), Honda’s automobile production Thailand likely and sales joint venture company in to miss out on Thailand, will see its annual production capacity rise to 420,000 units in bioplastics plant 2015 through new investment in its Setting up a bioplastics plant in Ma- existing and new plants. laysia would be more financially feasible than in Thailand due to bet- “Thailand has long been one of our ter government subsidies and tax key markets and an important R&D holidays, says an executive from a and production base for Honda in polylactic acid producer. Although the Asia/Oceania region. Honda US-based NatureWorks, the world’s will continue to create high-quality leading bioplastics company, decid- automobiles that meet customer ed to set up a regional office in Thai- needs and to fulfil our strong enland, the source admitted Thailand’s vironmental commitment to leave Board of Investment is less flexible ‘Blue Skies for Our Children’ while than Malaysia’s in negotiating for continuing to grow our business incentives. “Thailand has an ad- along with the growing prospervantage in terms of the variety and ity of Thailand,” said Takanobu Ito, quantity of feedstock, but these ad- president of Honda. Ito was in Thaivantages cannot offset the financial land to join the ceremony marking costs,” said the executive. the beginning of the construction of a new plant. The ceremony was preNatureWorks, with annual capac- sided over by Prime Minister Yinity of 150,000 tonnes at its first and gluck Shinawatra. The new plant, to only bioplastics plant in Nebraska, be located in the Rojana Industrial is looking to build a second plant in Park in Prachin Buri province, reAsia. Last year, the SET-listed PTT quires an investment of Bt17.15 bilGlobal Chemical Plc, Thailand’s lion, including land acquisition and largest petrochemical producer,... construction costs. The latest... Full story at http://goo.gl/W1a57 Full story at http://goo.gl/vjnD1 http://goo.gl/UrVpE

...added that the set aside a signi company had budget of Bt20 ficant investment million for over0 million to Bt300 seas expansion Full story at http: . //goo.gl/bH6PF


6

BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF

Briefs Retail/Services

http://goo.gl/QyrTE

Advertisers move to digital screens, transit displays Amid stagnant growth of out-ofhome media in the first half of this year, transit and digital screen media appeared to be big gainers while conventional outdoor and in-store media lost favour. Surachet Bumrongsuk, manager of Kinetic Worldwide (Thailand), a leading planner and buyer of out-of-home media, said that local advertisers and product owners had changed their ways of spending via out-of-home media, which include outdoor, transit, in-store and digital screen media. They tend to relocate budgets for conventional billboards to cuttingedge media such as digital screens and moveable media including urban rail. Though big billboards in Bangkok’s prime locations are ex-

www.BBBrief.com

Mid-August/September 2013

To read the full article of a story brief, enter the short code at the end of the story into your browser: posed to high traffic – commuters on jammed roads – their returns remain limited mainly because of low utilisation from long-term clients in line with the high cost of... Full story at http://goo.gl/ECLjO3

Nok Air adds fresh route to Yangon

Nok Air is intensifying its foray in Myanmar, its first foreign country upon resumption of its international services, with a route from the Thai border town Mae Sot to the former capital Yangon. The daily Mae Sot-Yangon flight is due to commence on Oct 1, one month after the inauguration of its Myanmar service, also daily, from Mae Sot to Mawlamyine, formerly known as Moulmein. Mae Sot-Yangon was not previously planned by the Thai budget carrier, but it saw an opportunity for traffic on Myanmar’s secondary routes, said executives of the SET-listed airline.

...added that the company had set aside a significant investment budget of Bt200 million to Bt300 million for overseas expansion. Full story at http://goo.gl/bH6PF

prop, capable of carrying 34 passengers, chartered from Nok Mini, an affiliated airline with different ownership. Nok Air’s previously announced plan to offer BangkokYangon service in the... Full story at http://goo.gl/ZhG0HN

Flight of fancy

The 21-metre-long fore section of a real Boeing 737 that greets children at the entrance of KidZania Bangkok in Siam Paragon shopping mall is not there solely for children’s flight of fancy after its retirement from Thai AirAsia. The fuselage, which was cut off from an aircraft at Bangkok’s old Don Mueang airport a year ago, has found a new home and new duties at the edutainment centre, with a primary mission of embedding the airline’s brand in the minds of children as young as four.

Its secondary role is to inspire youngsters to become future pilots and cabin crew, demand for which The two Myanmar-bound routes will skyrocket over the next couple of originating from Mae Sot will be decades as airlines around the world operated by a Saab 340B turbo- take delivery of tens of thousands of new commercial jetliners. Boeing, the US plane maker, projects a need for 460,000 new commercial airline pilots worldwide by 2031. It expects Asia-Pacific will continue to present the largest growth in pilot demand, requiring 185,600 new ones during that period. The fuselage’s cabin and cockpit have been largely carried over from the real... Full story at http://goo.gl/CjZzE

We Fitness set for Thai debut

Angel Chan, who heads a chain of well-known fitness centres in Hong Kong, Taiwan and Thailand, will open her latest centre, We Fitness Society, with the intention of mak-

goo.gl/bH6PF

ing fitness part of Thai people’s everyday lives. Chan, who is COO of We Fitness Company, said that the first centre would officially open next month at Major Cineplex Ratchayothin. The team, comprising 50 staff – including personal trainers, sales and office administrators – was formed in January. “We plan to open four We Fitness Society clubs this year at Major Cineplex Ratchayothin, Major Cineplex Ekamai, Major Cineplex Pinklao, and Esplanade Ratchadaphi-sek, at a total cost of Bt600 million,” she said. Including this year’s outlay, the company expects to invest about Bt1.5 billion to open 10 fitness centres at Major Cineplex complexes and other malls over the next three... Full story at http://goo.gl/5v1H1

Ten new Villa Markets this year

Villa Market JP Co plans to accelerate its expansion this year, with a budget of 300-400 million baht. Director Pisit Poosanakhom said 10 new Villa Markets will open this year compared with only two last year, when it felt the impact from the floods in late 2011. Each supermarket will cost 30-40 million baht to open and have saleable space of 1,000 square metres. Each new store will create 40-50 new jobs. By yearend there will be 32 Villa Markets. The company opened three outlets in the first half of this year including the latest one, its 25th branch, in Phuket. More Villa Markets will be opened in new tourist destinations in the second half of this year. Several new retail chains are branching out into supermarkets, but Villa Market will maintain its sustainable strategy, said Mr Pisit. “We move at a slow pace, but each move is,... Full story at http://goo.gl/RCbZgz

www.juslaws.com

Looking to setup a new company but don’t know where to start?

• Thai Limited Company • Formation of a Foreign Company – Amity Treaty Company – FTA-Thai Australia Company – JTPEA Thai Japanese Company – Foreign Business Act

free consultation Bangkok Office: 1104/157 Noble Cube, Pattanakarn Road Tel: (66) 02.187.2640 - 1 • Email: Bangkok@juslaws.com Phuket Office: The Royal Place, 96/14 Chalermprakiet Ror.9 Rd Tel: (66) 076.304.353 – 5 • Email: Phuket@juslaws.com


2

BANGKOK BU SINESS BRIEF

Briefs

www.BBBrief.com

General Inte

Use the QR Code reader in your smartphone to see all the stories in a certain category.

Tourism

http://goo.gl/fxE4d

Centara to add new luxury hotel in Pattaya Centara Hotels & Resorts is preparing to open a new luxury hotel in Pattaya. The new-build, five-star Centara Grand Phratamnak Resort Pattaya will soft-open in September 2013, featuring 165 rooms and suites, all with private balconies, Nespresso coffee machines, LED flat-screen TVs, DVD players and free Wi-Fi. The property will also feature the Ruffino’s Restaurant & Bar, a rooftop outlet with sea views, plus a rooftop swimming pool with pool bar, a beach house and spa. There will also be meeting facilities for up to 80 people. “Phratamnak Hill is… the city’s most prestigious address, and in creating our new five-star resort hotel we have been very much aware that it will form a centerpiece and a landmark for the district,” said Chris Bailey, Centara’s senior VP for... Full story at http://goo.gl/KZ800

Travellers want cinemas, sleeping pods, libraries

rest

December 20 11

To read the fu ll article of a story brief, 2013 BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF enter thMid-August/September e short code ...added that the at the end set aside a signi company had the story into budget of Bt20 ficant investment goo.gl/bH6P your browser: of million for over0 million to Bt300 seas expansion F liam Shakespe Full story at http: . //goo.gl/b are

ist arrivals to Thailand to reach 5.4 million in 2014, compared to the projected 4 million this year. The Guangzhou office will also cover Shenzhen. At present, per-capita revenue for Guangzhou people is on par with that of Beijing and Shanghai, at around 100,000 yuan, while Shenzhen is 150,000 yuan.

7

Authority of Thailand. Mr Sansern said Beijing is expected to offer multiple-entry visas or triple the period of stay to 90 days for Thai tourists. “Visa waivers not only stimulate tourism but also help to build... Full story at http://goo.gl/mwD5B

H6PF Nature and life in JuliusCaesar. 1997-98 wa are cyclical _ the impact of s a blessing, as the mains seasons of the yea 2008 would ha above the Europ the phases of the r, life and death, far worse ve been ean average. for the region, http://goo.gl/o ” Azman In Caught up in da moon, the tides. Mokhtar, zbNM India, China the managing ily details, we eas and Thailand, ily forget that dir ect of or Kh Asia stands to rou aza ghly 12 percent nah the business wo of has cycles, too. rld told the CI Nasional of Malaysia, tion contribute to a the populaWe are all fam MB Asean Confe gain from W pension, while iliar with the econo rence. the we es t mi ak c ne bu sse sin s ess of cycle His com slowdown of expansion, con sion system are Thailand’s penments were... ... covery. Howe traction and re- Full story Full story at htt The shift of eco ver, other cyc at http://goo.gl/d nomic growth p:/ /goo.gl/rtpH3 lic ph al fu2 en u om ena affect... momentum to the Thailand near Preventing up numerous East has opened Full story at http://goo.gl/fJ to p opportunities olr of list of wor that Asian countries Bangkok from out, suggests an should not miss Panel: Asia bett weakest pensld’s sinking bigges economist. io off, not immun er n t systems: stud challenge The robust eco y from global cr e, no Greece, India, Ch Land subsidence China and em mic growth of is es ina and Thailand erging economi caused by groun are home to the water losses top will open a ne es KUALA LUMPUR : The As d weake w s ian cri- pensi on systems in st national lems that must the list of probAsian economi opportunity for sis in the late 1990s was a wa es to increase the be the kesol cal up ved wo l for in rld cri Ba , the region that pp wealth from tra ir has turned eig led by a mix of acute sover- kok to mitigate the impact ngde in goods an out to be of the n debt, young climate change services at a tim a blessing in d retire dis e on States and Europ when the United nearly 15 years later, as the guise high ratios of pension ment ages, a study by multin flooding, says region’s ers an ers to worke ational agencies financial sec Full story at htt are... d . p://goo.gl/S65D6 able to sus tor is now strong and study poor pension take-up, a The conclusio showed. tain a certain n de is gre contained in of shocks from e Grow with th a rep ort the entitled “Clim e flow Western Hemi fallout in the The Allianz ate Risks and Ad of cycles sphere, accord ing sion Susta Global Investors Pen- Megac aptation in Asian Coastal to a panellist at a recent As inability Index, ities”, jointly con ‘There is a tid ean conference. ducted by the which Asian De tracks the rel e velop ati men, which, tak in the affairs of ity of nationa ve sustainabil- Internation ment Bank, the Japan l al leads on to for en at the flood, “There wi in 44 countries pension systems and the Wo Cooperation Agency ll be more crises tune”, wrote Wi around the wo rld Bank in 201 l- future, an in the showe rld, 0. d the Asian crisis in tirees d the number of Greek reThe report recom to people of wo rking age reFull story at htt mended a... p://goo.gl/20yMD

Sponsored by

...

Khiri named Thai agent for space tourism venture

Bangkok-based Khiri Voyages has been appointed as exclusive Thai- For the Indian market, TAT projects land agent for Space Expedition the number of visitors from India Corporation, which will hold its will reach... Asia-wide media launch in Hong Full story at http://goo.gl/HlsPD Kong on Monday. The first flights into space will be late this year or Taiwan, China eye early 2014. The cost per trip is ap- easier visas proximately Bt4.2 million. Exclu- China and Taiwan will likely be the sively for the Thai market, the price next countries after Japan to relax includes the training mission to the visa rules to woo foreign tourists, esNetherlands and the space jour- pecially Thais, say industry experts. ney from the Spaceport in either Visa facilitation has become a new Curacao – a Dutch-controlled is- marketing tool for the tourism inland in the Caribbean – or the US, dustry, said Charoen Wangananont, business-class flights from Bangkok an adviser to and former president to both destinations, transfers, and of the Thai Travel Agents Associadeluxe accommodation for two tion. Japan’s recent visa waiver will people. Additional modules of pre- definitely put pressure on China flight training, such as zero-gravity and Taiwan, the other two markets flights, are available, at extra cost, favoured by Thai travellers, he said. if the space traveller wants to subDream GYM A5_c.pdf 1 27/3/2555 14:17:26 scribe to these. Sharing his view was Sansern Ngaorungsi, the deputy governor for inSXC says space travel is no longer ternational marketing in Asia and the exclusive domain of govern- the South Pacific at the Tourism ments. It is now coming into reach for private individuals and organisations. SXC will facilitate space adventure travel for Thai nationals who book through Khiri Voyages, which has an introductory Thailanguage website up at www.spacevoyages.asia. After booking through Khiri Voyages, Thai space travellers will undergo training in the Netherlands, which includes a flight in an... Full story at http://goo.gl/HRxIa

An international survey has revealed 10 complimentary features that travellers want to see at a dream airport. About 49% of more than Three promising 10,000 travellers interviewed in 25 markets for Thai countries excluding Thailand by tourism in 2014 travel search site Skyscanner nominated cinemas like those at Singa- China, Russia and India will be the pore Changi Airport. fastest-growing markets for Thai tourism in 2014, according to the Shuteye also scored highly, with Tourism Authority of Thailand. 36% of respondents voting for However, the three markets are sleeping pods, which Abu Dhabi In- mostly in the medium- and low-end ternational Airport unveiled in May segments. To expand these markets, at about 375 baht per hour. the TAT will try to attract mediumto high-end tourists as their econoVoted in third place by 32% of re- mies have a positive outlook, said spondents in the poll was a library Pongsathorn Kessasamli, deputy that allows travellers to borrow their governor for policy and planning. holiday reading, showing that the traditional paperback is still a popu- To boost the Chinese market, the lar choice for travellers despite the TAT opened its fifth office in China rise of e-books. in Guangzhou by the end of the year to cover South China. The first Outdoor space is also a highly de- four offices are in Beijing, Kunming, sired feature, with a park the fourth... Shanghai, and Chengdu. TAT exFull story at http://goo.gl/vMyE8 pected the number of Chinese tourC

M

Y

CM

MY

CY

CMY

K

Erawan branches into budget hotels

The Erawan Group is spending Bt2 billion on expanding its network into the budget-hotel segment with 30 openings through 2015 under its new Hop Inn brand. The first opening will be during the second or third quarter of next year and the brand’s launch will make it the first Thai-owned budget chain in the Kingdom, competing head-on with the Tune chain from Malaysia. Kasama Punyagupta, CEO of The Erawan Group, said the budget-hotel segment had big potential, with low risk and a high return. Twenty-five of the planned Hop Inn hotels will be located in Thailand, and the other five elsewhere in Asean. The first five properties are under construction, and nine openings in total are scheduled by the end of next year. Each hotel will have 79 rooms and guests will... Full story at http://goo.gl/2SO9I


8

BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF

Briefs Real Estate

http://goo.gl/hPK52

Promotions aplenty at upcoming shows Home-buyers will benefit from a host of special promotions offered by developers and others at major property-related exhibitions being held over the remainder of the year. The main events are being held from August 22-25 at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre, and the Business Housing Association’s show from August 29 to September 4 at CentralPlaza Lat Phrao. The organiser of the “Home Buyers Expo 2013”, said more than 300 new residential projects worth over Bt100 billion would be showcased at the show.

www.BBBrief.com

Mid-August/September 2013

To read the full article of a story brief, enter the short code at the end of the story into your browser:

...added that the company had set aside a significant investment budget of Bt200 million to Bt300 million for overseas expansion. Full story at http://goo.gl/bH6PF

than 3,000 non-performing assets on its books. The lure is zero interest for the first year of a loan taken out to purchase one of the NPAs.

second half of this year, following greater investment in Amata City in Rayong by foreign companies, particularly those from China, which have relocated production bases Meanwhile, property firms them- after facing trade barriers to their selves also plan to run special pro- exports from some trade partners. motional campaigns in a bid to China is also expected to experience boost sales during the rest of the... a decline of economic growth to 7.5 Full story at http://goo.gl/7IVq5 per cent this year from the previously estimated 8.5 per cent, encouragAmata expands ing investors to look to overseas industrial estates markets, a move supported by the Chinese government. as Chinese flock in Amata Corp, Thailand’s major developer and manager of factory estates, is set to expand its industrial zones to cater to Chinese investors, who are expected to set up 300 to 500 plants in its zones in the next five years. There are around 60 Chinese factories in Amata zones currently. The firm’s zones are expected to have 100 plants by the end of this year.

goo.gl/bH6PF

Border provinces attract foreigners Thailand’s border provinces and those along main transport routes and future economic corridors are drawing interest from foreign investors who bought land plots for trade and industrial expansion. Surachet Kongcheep at property consultant Colliers International Thailand said potential destinations in the North are Tak’s Mae Sot district and Chiang Rai’s Chiang Khong district.

“We’ve prepared the land plots to serve rising demand for business establishments. We will expand phase by phase, each comprising between 1,000 and 2,000 rai,” Viboon added... Full story at http://goo.gl/lBQDc

In Mae Sot, on the Myanmar border, hotels and condominiums are being developed. The area will become more attractive for investment after the cabinet approved the development of 5,600 rai south of the Moei River to support new investment. In Wooden prefab Chiang Khong, Chinese investors shops on sale are buying land to develop... Prize of Wood Industry Co, a Full story at http://goo.gl/mbxjsX wooden products and flooring The Government Housing Bank manufacturer, expanded its prefab- Strong demand is also launching a special promo- Viboon Kromdit, chief marketing ricated wooden houses to include for campus condos tion on July 20 at all branches with officer, expects the company to see karaoke and coffee shops, and plans Campus condominiums are the lata view to sharply reducing the more better operating performance in the to launch two-storey units in three est trend for property firms seeking months. MD Khomwit Boontham- to develop new market segments, as rongkit said these karaoke and they face a period of intense comcoffee shops can be customised, petition in traditional parts of the removed and reassembled as re- residential market that is expected quired, all quite speedily. Cafe Ama- to continue well into next year. zon is the first customer, locating its Developers are trying to find new first prefabricated shop near Thai segments with reliable purchasing Chamber of Commerce University. power, and have been focusing in The unit size is 30 square metres particular on university students, and it is scheduled to be completed many of whose families can afford to buy a condo located close to where in 15 days priced at 780,000 baht. their child is studying. For example, Bangkok Thailand @Atrium Bangkok hotel “Our prefabricated wooden house is Pruksa Real Estate plans to introbased on a Lego system. It can be as duce its latest condominium on small or large as desired,” he said. “A Phaholyothin Road, located close to and International Property Specialist Certification resort owner does not need to invest Kasetsart University. Property Per“Certified International Property Specialist (CIPS)” a huge sum of money. He can spend fect, meanwhile, has introduced two maybe 5 million baht for five units... Uniloft campus condominiums, at... of the Best Business opportunity Full story at http://goo.gl/OHpCu9 Full story at http://goo.gl/t2p0N

THAILAND CIPS ���� October �-�� International Real Estate Network Event

Best

for Real Estate business in Thailand!!!

We are ready for AEC ���� and without a doubt licensing of

real estate agents in Thailand is sure to come!!!

� days course and Business network event including Exclusive business network party

Organised by RESAM

(Real Estate Sales & Marketing Association of Thailand)

Apply for joining Thailand CIPS ���� please contact:

(�)�� ��� �� �� , (�)�� ��� ����

Email: info@cips.in.th www.cips.in.th

www.juslaws.com

Looking at purchasing property in Thailand but don’t know where to start? • Acquisition Methods • Contract Review • Title search on the property • Assistance with Transfer • Due Diligence • Banking Assistance

free consultation Bangkok Office: 1104/157 Noble Cube, Pattanakarn Road Tel: (66) 02.187.2640 - 1 • Email: Bangkok@juslaws.com Phuket Office: The Royal Place, 96/14 Chalermprakiet Ror.9 Rd Tel: (66) 076.304.353 – 5 • Email: Phuket@juslaws.com


2

BANGKOK BU SINESS BRIEF

Briefs

www.BBBrief.com

General Inte

http://goo.gl/VwYn9

To read the fu ll article of a story brief, 2013 BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF enter thMid-August/September e short code ...added that the at the end set aside a signi company had the story into budget of Bt20 ficant investment goo.gl/bH6P your browser: of million for over0 million to Bt300 seas expansion F liam Shakespe Full story at http: . //goo.gl/b are

He acknowledged that while some web-based videocalling services such as Google Hangouts are offered free of charge, they are designed specifically for... form, TrueVisions believes it can Full story at http://goo.gl/90upTe maintain its position as the “King of IT firm turns focus Sports” with a variety of sports... Full story at http://goo.gl/2t3XU to TV-network

Use the QR Code reader in your smartphone to see all the stories in a certain category.

IT / Comms

rest

December 20 11

...

Challenging About 10% of social- environment limits media users now growth prospects shop online of Asian Internet Thais are spending more time on- firms: EIU report line and amid boom times in social media, fewer than 10 per cent of social-media users shop online. Pawoot Pongvitayapanu, president of the Thai E-Commerce Association, confirmed the 10-per-cent figure of 19 million Facebook users in Thailand. Surangkana Wayuparb, director of the Electronics Transaction Development Agency, said the social commerce tends to grow further. The agency’s annual survey showed that almost all participants used social media and almost half of those who did (49.7%) had purchased items via those platforms, defined as social commerce. The survey also found that more women conduct social commerce than men. The top three goods purchased via social media were clothes, shoes or bags; information-technology gadgets, computers or mobile phones;... Full story at http://goo.gl/MbjD1

TrueVisions: new channel for Man United fans

TrueVisions partnered with the Manchester United Fan Club to launch the MUTV Channel as a part of its customer-retention plan, particularly for soccer fans, before the new season of the English Premier League kicks off on arch-rival CTH. “We are now happy with the churn rate, which is still below our estimate. We also expect that our existing subscribers who want to watch live EPL matches will opt to stay with us and buy a new settop box provided by the EPL rights holder,” said Ong-ard Prapakamol, chief commercial officer. In the past several months, the leading subscription-based TV operator has rolled out marketing events to introduce new packages, relaunch a mobile application called “TrueVisions Anywhere”, and premiere this new soccer channel, which aims to attract the more than 14 million Manchester United fans in the country. With MUTV on its plat-

per cent in the second year, 90 per cent in the third and 95 per cent in the fourth. Chatree Chatreekul, vice president for digital broadcasting at International Research, estimated that the overall investment cost... Full story at http://goo.gl/K9Sqa

H6PF Nature and life in JuliusCaesar. 1997-98 wa are cyclical _ the impact of s a blessing, as the mains seasons of the yea 2008 would ha above the Europ the phases of the r, life and death, far worse ve been ean average. for the region, http://goo.gl/o ” Azman In Caught up in da moon, the tides. Mokhtar, zbNM India, China the managing ily details, we eas and Thailand, ily forget that dir ect of or Kh Asia stands to rou aza ghly 12 percent nah the business wo of has cycles, too. rld told the CI Nasional of Malaysia, tion contribute to a the populaWe are all fam MB Asean Confe gain from W pension, while iliar with the econo rence. the we es t mi ak c ne bu sse sin s ess of cycle His com slowdown of expansion, con sion system are Thailand’s penments were... ... covery. Howe traction and re- Full story Full story at htt The shift of eco ver, other cyc at http://goo.gl/d nomic growth p:/ /goo.gl/rtpH3 lic ph al fu2 en u om ena affect... momentum to the Thailand near Preventing up numerous East has opened Full story at http://goo.gl/fJ to p opportunities olr of list of wor that Asian countries Bangkok from out, suggests an should not miss Panel: Asia bett weakest pensld’s sinking bigges economist. io off, not immun er n t systems: stud challenge The robust eco y from global cr e, no Greece, India, Ch Land subsidence China and em mic growth of is es ina and Thailand erging economi caused by groun are home to the water losses top will open a ne es KUALA LUMPUR : The As d weake w s ian cri- pensi on systems in st national lems that must the list of probAsian economi opportunity for sis in the late 1990s was a wa es to increase the be the kesol cal up ved wo l for in rld cri Ba , the region that pp wealth from tra ir has turned eig led by a mix of acute sover- kok to mitigate the impact ngde in goods an out to be of the n debt, young climate change services at a tim a blessing in d retire dis e on States and Europ when the United nearly 15 years later, as the guise high ratios of pension ment ages, a study by multin flooding, says region’s ers an ers to worke ational agencies financial sec Full story at htt are... d . p://goo.gl/S65D6 able to sus tor is now strong and study poor pension take-up, a The conclusio showed. tain a certain n de is gre contained in of shocks from e Grow with th a rep ort the entitled “Clim e flow Western Hemi fallout in the The Allianz ate Risks and Ad of cycles sphere, accord ing sion Susta Global Investors Pen- Megac aptation in Asian Coastal to a panellist at a recent As inability Index, ities”, jointly con ‘There is a tid ean conference. ducted by the which Asian De tracks the rel e velop ati men, which, tak in the affairs of ity of nationa ve sustainabil- Internation ment Bank, the Japan l al leads on to for en at the flood, “There wi in 44 countries pension systems and the Wo Cooperation Agency ll be more crises tune”, wrote Wi around the wo rld Bank in 201 l- future, an in the showe rld, 0. d the Asian crisis in tirees d the number of Greek reThe report recom to people of wo rking age reFull story at htt mended a... p://goo.gl/20yMD

Sponsored by

providers

Determined to cash in on the transition to digital terrestrial-TV broadcasting, International Research Corp, a leading IT company, plans to diversify into broadcasting business by providing hardware and software for national digitalnetwork providers. Amid intense competition from key rivals such as Loxley, Samart Corp, Cisco System (Thailand) and Planet Communication Asia, the listed company aims to secure a transmission-installation project with a state media agency that has already obtained a licence to provide a network for digital broadcasting.

Asia’s Internet businesses, notably those outside of North Asia, continue to face a challenging business environment that prevents them from growing to the scale of their counterparts elsewhere, according to new research from The Economist Intelligence Unit. The report, “Good to grow? The environment for Asia’s Internet businesses”, notes that while Asia accounts for nearly 50 per cent of the world’s Internet users, it has yet to produce an Internet giant on the scale of an Amazon Under a key condition of these lior a Facebook. cences, a digital-TV network provider must build and expand its The report, which was commis- service area for digital broadcasts to sioned by the Asia Internet Coali- 50 per cent of the nation’s 22 million tion, examines why this is the case. households within the first year, 80 Among the main findings of the research is that online payment channels are fragmented and underdeveloped, hindering business. Improving the payments landscape is a pressing issue for many Internet entrepreneurs in... Full story at http://goo.gl/kGrsV

Conferencing shifts from boardrooms to smart gadgets

Polycom Inc, the California-based maker of videoconferencing equipment, is tapping cloud-based conferencing software to help firms capitalise on the growing influence of social networking. Thep Ritrangkla, the regional manager of Polycom Thailand, said the increasing popularity of social media and smart wireless devices is reshaping demand for conferencing. Polycom’s real-presence cloud software lets users bring their social media contacts from Skype, Facebook, Google Talk and business email into the company’s video communications system, he said. Mr Thep said users can expand videoconferencing to any IP telephony connection with suppliers, partners or customers rather than using video communications within the internal system as in the past.

9

Specialised websites now main channel for job recruitment

About 91% of employers now rely on online recruitment websites as their main channel for job advertising, indicating that social media networks and other job posting channels can longer meet their needs, according to JobStreet.com. Eric Sito, regional GM, said that one of the challenges facing most companies is how to engage and convince top talents to work for them. Many firms are focusing on image making or brand building to be more attractive, while job candidates want more information. To make it easier for employers to find qualified candidates via online recruitment, JobStreet.com has introduced new features such as salary matching, location map and company insights. Candidates can now easily see which companies match their salary range, the first... Full story at http://goo.gl/ZotlJ


2

10

BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF

BANGKOK BU SINESS BRIEF

December 20 11

B www.BBBrief.com riefs

Mid-August/September 2013

The Chambers

General Inte

rest

liam Shakespe are Nature and life ar seasons of the yea the phases of the r http://goo.gl/o Caught up in da m zbNM ily ily forget that Asia stands to the b has cycles, too. We gain from W with the econo mi slowdown est of expansion, con c tra cov ery. However, The shift of eco o no mentum to the mic growth mo- phenomena affect... up numerous East has opened Full story at http://go op Asian countries portunities that out, suggests an should not miss Panel: Asia b economist. off, not immu The robust eco fr om global c nomic growth China and em of erging economi will open a ne es KUALA LUMPUR : Th w opportunity sis in the late 1990 for Asian economi s wa es wealth from tra to increase their call for the region that de in goods an out to be services at a tim a blessing i d e States and Europ when the United nearly 15 years later, as t e financial sec Full story at htt are... p://goo.gl/S65D6 able to sus tor is now tain a cer of shocks from the ta Grow with th fallo e fl ow We ste rn Hemisphere, of cycles to a panellist at a rece ‘There is a tid con ference. e men, which, tak in the affairs of leads on to for en at the flood, “There wi ll be more cris tune”, wrote Wi l- future, an d the Asian Sponsored by

Use your smartphone’s QR Code scanner or enter the short code to go directly to AMCHAM’s website.

...

The American Chamber of Commerce in Thailand (AMCHAM) 7th Floor, GPF Witthayu Tower A, 93/1 Wireless Road, Lumpini, Pathumwan, Bangkok 10330 Tel: +66 (0)2 254 1041 Fax: +66 (0)2 251 1605 Website: www.amchamthailand.com Email: service@amchamthailand.com

TWO NATIONS, ONE FRIENDSHIP In 2013, AMCHAM is celebrating Two Nations, One Friendship 180 years of Thailand-U.S. relations. The Friendship officially began in 1833 with the signing of the Treaty of Amity and Commerce, but the first U.S.-Thai (then Siam) encounter occurred 12 years before, when an American ship commanded by a “Captain Man” sailed into Bangkok.

http://goo.gl/mbUpG

And adventurous Americans, such as Jim Thompson, stayed in Thailand after World War II and began notable local businesses.

With the intention to establish an entity dedicated to furthering American business interests in Thailand, eight companies and 24 other members registered The American Chamber Of Commerce In Thailand (AMCHAM) in February 1957. AMCHAM’s stated objectives were to pro-mote commerce between the U.S. and Thailand, maintain a high level of civic and commercial reputation, As a gift to King Rama III, the American captain presented His promote American interests in Thailand, and give legal and business Majesty with 500 flintlock guns. In return, the king bestowed the opinions within the American community. title of “Khun Pakdiraja” upon Captain Man and granted a partial tax exemption on the ship’s cargo. By 1965, U.S. exports to Thailand totaled U.S.$128 million and during the 1960s and 1970s many of America’s largest companies Treaty of amity and commerce opened Thai based operations, including Dow Chemical (1967), In 1833, King Rama III received a more significant American visitor, Johnson & Johnson (1970) and Bristol-Myers Squib (1972). U.S. President Andrew Jackson’s appointed envoy, Ed-mund Roberts. The two men exchanged gifts, and more importantly, negotiated 1960S and 1970s: a changing business and political environment the Treaty of Amity and Commerce, which included a free trade Diplomatically, the 1960s began on a high note. His Majesty King agreement between the two countries, except in rice, firearms, and Bhumibol visited the United States and was welcomed with a tickeropium. The treaty was the United States’ first with an Asian nation. tape parade in New York City. In 1966 President Lyndon Johnson In 1856, U.S. diplomat Townsend Harris and King Rama IV became the first American chief executive to visit Thailand and a negotiated a revised ‘Treaty of Amity, Commerce, and Naviga-tion,” new ‘Treaty of Amity and Economic Relations” was agreed upon and which placed limits on import duties and export taxes. That same the reformed treaty granted both Thais and Americans, with some year, the J.W. Parker Company became the first Ameri-can firm to exceptions, “national treatment” to make investments and conduct open in Bangkok, followed by the American Rice Mill in 1858. By business activities in the partner country. 1910, Standard Oil and Singer Sewing Machine had entered Thailand and Ford had begun importing automobiles. In 1941, American President Johnson’s visit coincided with a surge in travel between the imports to Thailand were an estimated U.S.$8 million annually. two countries. A greater number of young Thais were going to the U.S. for their studies and they returned with more than simply a degree, but World War II: A test of friendship also a taste for American fashions and consumer goods. The start of World War II and Japan’s cap-ture of French Indo-China [...to be continued next issue] halted U.S.-Thailand trade. On December 8, 1941, Japan invaded Thailand and in January 1942, Prime Minister Field Marshal Phibun signed a mutual defense pact withja-pan and declared war against the United States. Many Thais considered the war declaration invalid and the Thai ambassador to the U.S.. M.R. Seni Pramoj refused to deliver the document, believing that it did not represent the will of the Thai people. Throughout the war, the United States refrained from declaring war on Thailand. Growth of American businesses in Thailand America’s private sector recognized post-war Thailand as an appealing investment destination. Pan American Airways started flights to Bangkok in 1947, helping to grow Thailand as a tourist destination. Bank of America opened their first Thailand branch on New Road.

To re enter the sto

H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej, flanked by U.S. Ambassador to Thailand John E. Peuritov, and members of the royal staff, after inspecting the Chevrolet Corvette at the American exhibit at Constitution Fair in Bangkok in 1954.


2

BANGKOK BU SINESS BRIEF

December 20 11

Briefs 11

www.BBBrief.com

Mid-August/September 2013 BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF

The Chambers

General Inte

rest

liam Shakespe are Nature and life ar seasons of the yea the phases of the r http://goo.gl/o Caught up in da m zbNM ily ily forget that Asia stands to the b has cycles, too. We gain from W with the econo mi slowdown est of expansion, con c tra cov ery. However, The shift of eco o no mentum to the mic growth mo- phenomena affect... up numerous East has opened Full story at http://go op Asian countries portunities that out, suggests an should not miss Panel: Asia b economist. off, not immu The robust eco fr om global c nomic growth China and em of erging economi will open a ne es KUALA LUMPUR : Th w opportunity sis in the late 1990 for Asian economi s wa es wealth from tra to increase their call for the region that de in goods an out to be services at a tim a blessing i d e States and Europ when the United nearly 15 years later, as t e financial sec Full story at htt are... p://goo.gl/S65D6 able to sus tor is now tain a cer of shocks from the ta Grow with th fallo e fl ow We ste rn Hemisphere, of cycles to a panellist at a rece ‘There is a tid con ference. e men, which, tak in the affairs of leads on to for en at the flood, “There wi ll be more cris tune”, wrote Wi l- future, an d the Asian Sponsored by

Use your smartphone’s QR Code scanner or enter the short code to go directly to AustCham’s website.

...

The Australian-Thai Chamber of Commerce (AustChamThailand) 20th Floor, Thai CC Tower, 889 South Sathorn Road, Yannawa, Bangkok 10120 Tel: +66 (0)2 210 0216-8 Fax: +66 (0)2 675 6696 Website: www.austchamthailand.com Email: admin@austchamthailand.com

Charles Jack General Manager of The Westin Grande Sukhumvit, Bangkok

Charles Wrightman General Manager of Natural Ville and Lenotre

http://goo.gl/N47Gg

Michal Zitek General Manager of the Imperial Queen’s Park Hotel

An Unbeatable Mix: Thai and Australian Hospitality By James Illes

Charles Jack has been General Manager of The Westin Grande Sukhumvit since 2009; Charles Wrightman has been General Manager at Natural Ville managed by Accor since 2003; and Michal Zitek has been General Manager [Below is an exert from the lead article in the August edition of at the Imperial Queen’s Park Hotel from 2010. Advance magazine, the Chamber’s monthly publication. The article is based on a video produced by Mufasa Co., Ltd. for AustCham All three are career hoteliers who have been through the ranks, studied for highlighting three leading Australian hoteliers in Bangkok. Please visit appropriate qualifications along the way and have a thorough grounding in www.mufasa.co.th for more information about Mufasa. The video will all aspects of running a hotel. be available for viewing online on the AustChamThailand YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/AustChamThailand and on the website at www.austchamthailand.com] Join us for September Sundowners Hospitality is big business in Thailand, and forms a major contribution to the country’s economy: the Ministry of Tourism and Sports reported over 22 million tourists visited Thailand in 2012 and with literally thousands of hotels throughout the country, it is a highly competitive business. Three Australian General Managers of leading Bangkok hotels spoke about their recipes for success in this high-profile industry and their enthusiasm and optimism was infectious. All three particularly stressed the complementarity between the Australian and Thai perspectives on life: there are differences and similarities, but the two, particularly in their approach to hospitality, come together perfectly to deliver a standard which is second to none.

Sundowners is AustCham Thailand’s monthly business networking function. It is a great opportunity for members and guests of the Chamber to meet, network and exchange views in a social environment. Date: Time: Cost: Location:

To re enter the sto

Wednesday, 4 September 2013 18:00 - 21:00 (last drinks served at 20:30) Baht 550 for members Baht 1,000 for non-members Sambal Bar, Royal Orchid Sheraton, Bangkok


2

12

BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF

BANGKOK BU SINESS BRIEF

December 20 11

B www.BBBrief.com riefs

Mid-August/September 2013

The Chambers

General Inte

rest

liam Shakespe are Nature and life ar seasons of the yea the phases of the r http://goo.gl/o Caught up in da m zbNM ily ily forget that Asia stands to the b has cycles, too. We gain from W with the econo mi slowdown est of expansion, con c tra cov ery. However, The shift of eco o no mentum to the mic growth mo- phenomena affect... up numerous East has opened Full story at http://go op Asian countries portunities that out, suggests an should not miss Panel: Asia b economist. off, not immu The robust eco fr om global c nomic growth China and em of erging economi will open a ne es KUALA LUMPUR : Th w opportunity sis in the late 1990 for Asian economi s wa es wealth from tra to increase their call for the region that de in goods an out to be services at a tim a blessing i d e States and Europ when the United nearly 15 years later, as t e financial sec Full story at htt are... p://goo.gl/S65D6 able to sus tor is now tain a cer of shocks from the ta Grow with th fallo e fl ow We ste rn Hemisphere, of cycles to a panellist at a rece ‘There is a tid con ference. e men, which, tak in the affairs of leads on to for en at the flood, “There wi ll be more cris tune”, wrote Wi l- future, an d the Asian Sponsored by

Use your smartphone’s QR Code scanner or enter the short code to go directly to the BCCT’s website.

...

British Chamber of Commerce Thailand (BCCT) 7th Floor, 208 Wireless Road, Lumphini, Pathumwan, Bangkok 10330 Tel: +66 (0)2 651 5350-3 Fax: +66 (0)2 651 5354 Website: www.bccthai.com Email: Greg@bccthai.com

News for UK expats In June Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt announced cross-government plans to ensure legal migrants make a fair contribution to key public services such as the National Health Service (NHS). The proposals include giving expatriate UK citizens access to free NHS care after they have paid up to 10 years of National Insurance contributions. Currently British expatriates do not necessarily qualify for free NHS care. Many stopped regular national insurance contributions when they moved overseas but have at some time worked in the UK. Therefore, a key issue is how to check how many years’ contributions have already been made. BCCT Executive Director Greg Watkins contacted the Department of Work and Pensions via their website and received a reply within 24 hours including a form to apply for a state pension statement.

To re enter the sto

http://goo.gl/Vav3Q

under additional services. Further reports on these two issues will be available in the next BCCT rebranded magazine The Link. Investment by Thais in the UK continues to grow With all the activity around UKTI’s outsourcing of new functions to BCCT, the Chamber has been delving deeper into the market for UK businesses in Thailand market.

Of importance to note is that an increasing amount of business is also going from Thailand into the UK. A seminar on UK investment organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in late July re-emphasised this point. The Many BCCT members wish to send their Thai employees to the UK for seminar highlighted the strong trend of Thai businesses to look to the UK training, work experience, conferences, business meetings, and so on. There as an investment destination. are many myths and much rumour and hearsay about problems securing UK visas. The standard advice of applying well in advance particularly if it A panel consisting of prominent Thai business leaders who have made is the applicant’s first visit and studying the information on the UK Visas successful investments in the UK shared their views on the attractions of and Immigration website remain valid. In addition, last year the UK Border investing in the UK, citing in particular the quality of life, technological Agency introduced a Priority Visa Service. For an additional fee of THB infrastructure and the rule of law. The business potential of the UK as a 3,000 the visa application processed can be fast tracked. Further details may mature market in itself and as a base for investing in and trading with the be found on the the UK Visas and Immigration website’s Thailand section rest of Europe and elsewhere was another important factor. The UK is the largest offshore FDI market for Thailand in Europe and ranks second amongst Thailand’s trade partner in Europe. The strategic dialogue initiated by Prime Minister Yingluck and Prime Minister David Cameron aims to double trade from the current level of GBP 5.5 billion in the next 5 years. This will involve each side exporting from their home bases, as well as Thais exporting from the UK and Brits exporting from Thailand back to their mother countries. BCCT will continue to assist our members on both sides of this equation. Companies wishing to join BCCT to benefit from our services should contact BCCT Deputy Director at Sarinthorn@bccthai.com. Joining the BCCT before the end of August will still allow time for your company profile to be included in the 2013/2014 of the Annual Handbook & Directory.


BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF Mid-August/September 2013

13

Read today’s business news briefs about Bangkok, Thailand, and Asean every weekday at www.BBBrief.com

The rise of Isan

Story continued from Page 1.

market, as wages are on par with wages in the capital. With increased wages, the people of Isan, all 21 million of them, now have more disposable income. According to a report by research firm GfK, sales of smartphones in the first quarter this year have quadrupled (344%) in the region, while the rest of the country only saw 11-17% growth. Thailand’s retailers and consumer product manufacturers are taking notice. CP Group, SCG, and other major companies are increasing their presence in the region. New malls and supermarkets are being built, with even high-end retailers like Central and Villa Market expanding in the region. In April, Central Pattana Group opened a 2.75 billion baht mall in Ubon Ratchatani, while the 168 Platinum Mall in Udon Thani is currently under construction, and more shopping malls are being planned. And property developers like Sansiri are planning a number of multimillion-dollar condo projects in Khon Kaen. According to the Bank of Thailand, in 2012, overall investment in Isan jumped to $2.3 billion. Actually, this growth has been happening for a number of years now. Between 2007-2011, Isan’s economic growth was 40%, while Bangkok recorded just 17% growth and the rest of the country was at 20%. On top of that, household income in Isan has risen 40% over the same period. To illustrate how dramatic the shift of focus from Bangkok to Isan has become, just look at the Bangkok government’s refusal earlier this year to sanction the staging of an F1 race in the capital. That refusal has opened a door for Isan, according to the U.S.-based sports network ESPN, which recently floated the possibility of Isan hosting an F1 event sometime in the future. With all of the infrastructure improvements planned for the next seven years, the idea doesn’t sound too far-fetched. But much of Isan’s continued economic growth will depend on those infrastructure improvements. The Thai government is planning to spend $71 billion (2.2 trillion baht) on rail, highway, and seaport projects between 2014-2020. If the government can push this ‘Thailand 2020 Bill’ through parliament, Isan will be one of the main recipients of these new projects. At a recent presentation at an American Chamber of Commerce Thailand luncheon, Minister of Transport Dr. Chadchart Sittipunt called the past ten years “the lost decade.” He noted that with all of the political upheaval and natural disasters in Thailand since 2004, there have been no new major infrastructure developments approved by the government in this period. As a result, Thailand has lost momentum in its pursuit of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), dropping from second in Southeast Asia in 2004 (behind Singapore), to fourth in the region behind Singapore, Indonesia, and Malaysia. He also pointed out that Thailand was only ranked 49th in the 2012-2013 rankings of global competitiveness on infrastructure, with Singapore ranked second and Malaysia ranked 29th. With the implementation of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) scheduled for 2015, Isan can take advantage of its prime geographical location and benefit from the relocation and establishment of regional distribution centers and facilities. Isan would also be part of the proposed AEC East-West Corridor, a highway and infrastructure trade route that would run from Vietnam – through Laos, Thailand (via Khon Kaen), and Myanmar – to the Andaman Sea. Isan could also become the ‘entrance to Thailand’ and the rest of Southeast Asia for trade from China. But if Isan’s economic boom is to continue, the proposed infrastructure projects will have to be approved by parliament and implemented faster than the major projects of the past. If not, Isan’s miraculous transformation to prosperity will start to stall, and will jeopardize Thailand’s overall economic growth for many years. As the Bangkok Post columnist, Khun Voranai Vanijaka, wrote in a recent column about the booming northeast, for now “where Isan goes, so goes Thailand….”

Bangkok Business Brief www.BBBrief.com Mango Mango Ltd. Part. 124 Sukhumvit 38 Prakanong, Klongtoey Bangkok 10110 • Thailand

Tel. 02 712 4052

Publisher and Managing Director (Thai Sales) Pavinee Chaymanee • 084-147-5550 thailandmagazine@gmail.com

Managing Director & Creative Director Reid Nixon • 080-246-9000 reid@bbbrief.com

Business Development Manager (English sales) Andy Hyde • 080-814-9080 andy@bbbrief.com

Delivery

Anan Boonma

In cooperation with Siam Gazette Co., Ltd. Alan Verstein • 081-761-9302

Volume 2, Issue 9 • Mid-August/September 2013 Copyright 2011-2013. All rights reserved.


14

BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF

www.BBBrief.com

Mid-August/September 2013

The Calendar

For event details, enter the short code below the event into your browser:

18

19

Sept.

Aug.

Sunday

25

goo.gl/6ngBg

Tuesday

Monday

26

AMCHAM: Lao Chapter – U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act http://goo.gl/JlLf0k AMCHAM: U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act http://goo.gl/vwKPCS

1

2

8

9

15

16 AMCHAM: Legal Cmte – Extradition and International Crime http://goo.gl/MvWOMZ

22

Bangkok Trader Networking Party http://goo.gl/6ngBg

23

20

27

AMCHAM: Business Economics Cmte – 2H13 Outlook http://goo.gl/pBdAAT BCCT / Bangkok Entrepreneurs: Evening Presentation (Bitcoin) http://goo.gl/QhmzAj http://goo.gl/JihG3

3

AMCHAM: Board of Governors Meeting http://goo.gl/yaa7B4 AMCHAM: SME/F&A http://goo.gl/pZwcJF Bangkok Trader / Mango Metro Networking http://goo.gl/EnNbR

10

AMCHAM: BOT Directors Meeting http://goo.gl/7rZOV4 AMCHAM: HR Cmte http://goo.gl/KK9UX PPI Professional Hour http://goo.gl/EbSqX

17

AMCHAM: ICT Cmte http://goo.gl/Moj5dW BCCT Board Meeting http://goo.gl/44oWYz AMCHAM: Professional Women Cmte http://goo.gl/lEwwod

24

BCCT: Membership Mtg http://goo.gl/7MCDgO AMCHAM: Bus. Eco. Cmte http://goo.gl/TVMCOK Joint: Chambers Lunch with Dr. Mechai http://goo.gl/1HLi0T http://goo.gl/tHLDdT


www.BBBrief.com

Mid-August/September 2013 BANGKOK BUSINESS BRIEF

15

Send us your event details for the Mid-September/October issue by September 9th to reid@bbbrief.com Wednesday

Thursday

21 AustCham: AustralianAlumni Healthy Living Presentation http://goo.gl/VdPEd3

28 AMCHAM: Professional Women Cmte – DRINKiQ by Diageo Moet Hennessy http://goo.gl/U9H0Fn

Friday

22 WebMob Thailand http://goo.gl/dEu8F

4 AMCHAM: Transportation & Logistic Cmte http://goo.gl/UiJNJp AustCham: Sundowners http://goo.gl/jmttPv

11

AMCHAM: Ambassador Coffee Briefing http://goo.gl/SZhL0l AMCHAM: New Member Orientation http://goo.gl/NocjSY AMCHAM: Social Network. http://goo.gl/tDHoNt

18

25

BCCT: European Pavilion in Clean Energy Expo Asia http://goo.gl/YxzVkA BCCT: Evening Presentation (Intellectual Property Law) http://goo.gl/IPXyCE

5 AMCHAM: Joint Travel & Tourism / Security & OSAC Committees http://goo.gl/LZKCMR

12 BCCT: Board Meeting http://goo.gl/za6V91

24

30

31

BCCT: EABC/Chiang Mai Business Group Seminar & Networking http://goo.gl/k1oqY5

TFI Charity 80s Night http://goo.gl/e6OU0z

6

AMCHAM: Joint Energy & Food & Agri-Business Cmte – Mitrphol Biomass Plant http://goo.gl/6bNLhW AMCHAM: Greater Phuket Chapter http://goo.gl/Thfia4

19

7 Living in Bangkok http://goo.gl/nJCdV3

13

14

20

21

BCCT: Ice Breaker ‘TEDxChiangMai Experience’ http://goo.gl/sfyij9 Movers & Shakers Pattaya http://goo.gl/fYXvN Joint: Eastern Seaboard Networking Evening http://goo.gl/Qcyvsv

AMCHAM: Customs & Excise Cmte http://goo.gl/q8OV6J AMCHAM: Tax Cmte – BOI Tax Changes http://goo.gl/I8gBYU BCCT: Third Thursday http://goo.gl/DeqTzA

AustCham: Voluntary English Teaching http://goo.gl/dwpy2M

26

AMCHAM: Adopta-School Dedication http://goo.gl/LTpxF8 AMCHAM: Santa Fe ChariBowl Tournament http://goo.gl/xN2BMg BCCT: Prof.Women’s Group Speed Networking http://goo.gl/Y0lLLU

23

AMCHAM: Joint Legal & Myanmar Task Force: FCPA Compliance http://goo.gl/ptcbIJ AMCHAM: Government Appreciation Night Celebrating 180 Years http://goo.gl/Q3NB3g

29

AMCHAM: CSR Cmte http://goo.gl/dNBb0S AMCHAM: US Rep. Tammy Duckworth Brief http://goo.gl/04Y0WW Movers & Shakers http://goo.gl/xOfWr

Saturday

27 Movers & Shakers http://goo.gl/xOfWr

28 AustCham: The Coffee Club 2013 AFL Grand Final Family Day http://goo.gl/krLdnP



Bangkok Business Brief - Volume 2, Issue 9 - Mid-August/September 2013