__MAIN_TEXT__
feature-image

Page 1

Free Copy

September – October 2016

ISSUE

#05/2016

a publication of CanCham Thailand


A comm u n i t y ev e n t f o r Ban g kok’s inter nati o n a l res id e n t s . Explore a l l t h e p o s s i bilit i e s for a fun a n d h e a l t h y lif e s t y l e .

Shuttle bus is available from Nana BTS station exit 1.

www.bumrungrad.com/livinginbangkok

Se p te m b e r 10 t h , 9 a m to 5 p m 21 s t f l oor C onf erence C ent er, Bumrungrad C l i ni c Bui l d i ng


Ron Livingston CanCham President

2016 - 2017 CANCHAM Thailand Board Members Patron:

H.E. Philip Calvert Ambassador of Canada to Thailand

Executive Board: President – Ron Livingston Treasurer – John Casella Secretary – John Stevens Vice President – Dean Outerson Vice President - Angus Mitchell Board of Directors:

Surachit (Art) Chanovan Joseph Henry Andrew Kloosterhuis Michael White Lloyd Wilson Sunny Patel Nitipong Boonsong Derek Van Pelt

Embassy Representative: Yvonne Chin

Advisors:

Sean Brady Peter van Haren Dan MacKay David A. F. Macdonald Stephen Janson Don Lavoie Ann Baines Picharn Sukparangsee

Executive Director Kelly Cailes

Thai-Canadian Chamber of Commerce 139 Pan Road, Sethiwan Tower 9th floor, Bangkok 10500 Tel: +66(0) 2266-6085-6 Fax: +66(0) 2266-6087 Email: info@tccc.or.th Website: www.tccc.or.th

The Voyageur is the monthly magazine of the Thai-Canadian Chamber of Commerce, covering all Thai-Canadian business, legal and social news of interest to the members and others who are active in expanding Thai-Canadian bilateral trade. Editor: CANCHAM Thailand Publisher: Scandinavian Publishing Co., Ltd. 211 Soi Prasert-Manukitch 29, Prasert-Manukitch Rd., Chorakeabua, Ladprao Bangkok 10230 Tel: +66(0) 2943-7166-8 Fax: +66(0) 2943-7169 Design: Disraporn Yatprom Email: disraporn@scandmedia.com

Dear CanCham Members and Friends,

I

It is interesting to be writing this short note to you as I sit in my summer home on Wellman Lake in Manitoba. The great Canadian summer is filled with friends visiting, water skiing, fishing and BBQing. The fresh air, clean water and Canadian wilderness has to be cherished. And yes, I will stop by Tim Hortons while in Canada. My first day back reunited me with my son Tirakorn and daughter Grace, who are both going to University at UBC in Vancouver. Our first day was full of fun down at Granville Island, eating fresh rasberries, blueberries and smoked salmon. We also had the taster tray at the Grandville Island Brewery, a fun way to taste some of Canada’s special Kraft beers. The CanCham would like to welcome Donica Pottie who has just been announced as Ambassador to the Kingdom of Thailand. She comes to us with experience from the embassy in China, Jordan and was previously Canadian ambassador to Cambodia in 2004-2007. She is married to Scot Slessor, and they have a daughter, Sophie. With the upcoming referendum in Thailand, our Embassy has supported a letter to the Prime Minister encouraging free and open dialogue among the Thai people: “Foreign governments aspire for Thailand to emerge quickly from the current period of political transition with a sustainable democracy, a thriving economy, and a united vision for the future. “Responsible and robust public discussion is not a threat to stability. The UN recently stated that 'respect for human rights and the rule of law are important elements for sustainable development' and emphasized 'the need for open and inclusive dialogue to promote democracy and support national reconciliation.' Our governments join the UN in stressing the importance of these principles in finding a consensus uniting all Thai people for the future. “Foreign governments urge the Thai government to allow the Thai people to engage in open dialogue, forge common links, and find the consensus needed to build a strong and sustainable future for all.” This editorial has been endorsed by Heads of the EU Member States missions in Thailand – Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovak Republic, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom – Head of the European Union Delegation, Ambassador of Canada, and Ambassador of the United States. Our Canadian identify of diversity, inclusion, transparency and honesty and the desire to bring our innovations to other parts of the world helps to drive us and support our friends here in Thailand. Please contact me at anytime at ron@iem-global.com if you have any ideas and or wish to support CanCham initiatives. Regards, Ron Livingston President CanCham

Advertising Contact: Mr. Finn Balslev, Marketing Director Scandinavian Publishing Co., Ltd. Tel: +66(0) 2943-7166 ext.116 or 08-1866-2577 Email: finn@scandmedia.com

September – October 2016

3


CanCham News

Thai-Canadian Trade Statistics Top 10 Import Partners to Thailand vs. Canada Source: Observatory of Economic Complexity (MIT), (all numbers as of 2014) 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

China: 18.0% ($37.98bn USD) Japan: 16.0% ($33.76bn USD) Malaysia: 6.0% ($12.66bn USD) USA: 5.9% ($12.45bn USD) United Arab Emirates: 5.5% ($11.61bn USD) 6. South Korea: 3.9% ($8.23bn USD) 7. Singapore: 3.8% ($8.02bn USD) 8. Indonesia: 3.4% ($7.17bn USD) 9. Saudi Arabia: 3.4% ($7.17bn USD) 10. Germany: 2.6% ($5.49bn USD) Canada: 0.37% ($0.78bn USD)

Top 10 Canadian Export Destinations vs. Thailand Source: Observatory of Economic Complexity (MIT), (all numbers as of 2014) 1. USA: $331bn 2. China: $18bn 3. UK: $10.6bn 4. Japan: $10.2bn 5. Mexico: $7.81bn 6. South Korea: $4.83bn 7. Hong Kong: $4.03bn 8. Germany: $3.83bn 9. France: $3.61bn 10. Belgium/Luxembourg: $3.52bn Thailand: $0.785bn

Top 10 Thai Imports from Canada 2015 Source: Observatory of Economic Complexity (MIT), (all numbers as of 2014) 1. Potassic Fertilizers: 11.0% (83.6 million USD) 2. Planes and Helicopters: 11.0% (86.1 million USD 3. Sulfate Chemical Woodpulp: 7.0% (54.7 million USD) 4. Dissolving Grade Chemical Woodpulp: 5.3% (41.4 million USD) 5. Integrated Circuits: 4.8% (37.5 million USD) 6. Gold: 4.6% (36.4 million USD) 7. Soybeans: 4.1% (32.2 million USD) 8. Wheat: 4.0% (31.3 million USD) 9. Synthetic Rubber: 2.6% (20.4 million USD) 10. Valves: 2.4% (19.1 million USD)

4

Voyageur


Top 10 Canadian Imports from Thailand 2014 Source: Observatory of Economic Complexity (MIT), (all numbers as of 2014) 1. Computers: 203m USD 2. Telephones: 174m USD 3. Jewelry: 162m USD 4. Processed Fish: 152m USD 5. Radio Receivers: 128m USD 6. Rice: 87.3m USD 7. Video Recording Equipment: 74.8m USD 8. Crustaceans: 72.4m USD 9. Integrated Circuits: 59m USD 10. Processed Fruits and Nuts: 57.9m USD

Canadian FDI in Thailand Source: Library of Parliament

Magna showcases

"Smartlatchs" Magna Automotive (Thailand) Limited recently attended the Manufacturing Expo 2016 at BITEC. Their highlighted product was "Smartlatchs" shown in Thailand for the first time in ASEAN. This technology is currently used in the BMWi8 and will soon be used in other OEMs.

September – October 2016

5


CanCham News

Phoenix Gold Rises Above the Greens By Les Walsh

L

Located 20 kilometres south of Pattaya, the Phoenix Gold Golf Club features 27 holes of superb golf. Home of CanCham’s annual Beaver Invitational, it is just 134km from Suvarnabhumi International Airport and 158km from downtown Bangkok. In designing the course, world renowned golf course designer Denis Griffiths took the more than 1,000 rai (1.6 million sqm/400 acres) of spectacular rolling land and used the natural elevation changes and memorable scenery to their greatest advantage. Three nine-hole courses were created for players of all skill levels, utilizing rolling fairways lined with a wide variety of young and mature trees, colourful shrubbery with flowers, lakes, ponds and bunkers to add spice and challenge. Now under new ownership and boasting an experienced management team, the entire course has undergone a makeover that began in 2014 with an upgrade of the greens complexes, as well as the bunkers, tee tops, fairways and drainage of the Mountain and Ocean nines. Master designer Pirapon Namatra then produced technical improvements, while not significantly changing the look of these nines; for example, he significantly re-routed and toughened up the shorter Lakes nine with the introduction of new lakes, tee boxes and greens, making the new layout much more fun and challenging. Pirapon has also created some of Thailand’s best courses, including the Banyan in Hua Hin, and Nikanti in Bangkok. The last two years has seen Phoenix Gold Golf Club literally rise from the ashes like the mythical bird it is named after to become one of the premier golf destinations in the Pattaya area. The new owner, Ms Chanya Swangchitr, is a keen golfer herself, and her

family also owns a Darren Clarke designed course near Dublin, Ireland. The new owners have invested in a new master plan which aims to have the company listed on the Thai Stock Exchange. After completing the acquisition and consolidation of the 400-acre site, the owners commissioned an extensive and comprehensive renovation and upgrade of the course, and there are also plans to develop luxury homes. New membership programs have been put in place, green fee rates have been revised, and special promotions have been launched to attract regular Pattaya area residents, Bangkokians, and inbound golfers alike. New function rooms, including a Members’ Lounge, have been part of the overall facelift, which will see both the pro shop and the locker rooms upgraded.

The improvements have extended to all parts of the club and its operations. The maintenance team has introduced new procedures for the fairways and greens to improve the playing conditions, and the putting greens in front of the clubhouse will be enlarged as well. Phoenix also plans to host a major new international golf tournament at the course in the second half of 2016. The Course The GolfEast team has been at Phoenix Gold over the past two years working through renovations of the 27-hole course one nine at a time. The Ocean and Ocean Courses were completed in mid-2015 and have seen work done on the bunkers, tee tops, fairways and drainage which have produced technical improvements, while not significantly changing the look of these courses. By comparison, the Lakes course has seen an exciting, major re-design that has seen several holes re-routed and introduces new lakes, tee boxes and greens. The Lakes is the shorter of the three courses, but Namatra's brief was to make it more interesting, and he feels it may become the most fun of the three courses. Major changes to Hole 5 have seen it turned into a teasing little par four, while Hole 6 has been transformed into a sharp dogleg right par 5 over a couple of lakes. As part of the course renovation, the grasses are being entirely replaced to provide the best possible surfaces available. When

6

Voyageur


CanCham News complete, the Tees will be Paspalum, Fairways will be Zoyzia, and the Greens will be Champion Turf Mountain 1-9: The Mountain Course affords the golfer an exquisite view of a famous landmark, with the best vantage point being the fairway of the signature 6th hole. A nearby mountain, with a large sheer-cliff face that is easily seen, has an impressive laser-carved image of Buddha. The 3-dimensional quality of The Mountain Course’s fairways tests the golfers’ interest and judgment of each stroke. The greens are designed to provide opportunities to show the golfers’ putting skills. Ocean 1-9: The Ocean Course is often a favorite with many golfers of all abilities. Many of its fairways are lined with mature trees on both sides. Its recent upgrade has seen much of the lower shrubs and redundant trees being cleared to allow the golfers view to the beautiful distant mountains to the north and the ocean to the east. Also, additional bunkers have been added while existing bunkers have been redesigned with graceful contours. The Ocean Course gradually rises in elevation from holes #4 to #6 and looking back the golfer can catch glimpses of the surrounding countryside. Completing the round from the signature 9th hole is memorable, with a dramatic panoramic view from the tee box over the of the Gulf of Thailand making for a perfect way to end the day.

delicious Thai and continental fare. It’s a great place to get ready or wind down over some great food and ice cold beverages. Golf Practice Facilities The practice facilities are second to none, and are a great place loosen up ahead of a round, or simply do some work on your game. The Driving Range is open from 6am to 6pm daily, offer 12 bays of both mats and natural turf. It’s also where you will find some great instruction from the resident Pro Andrew Scaife. The two practice greens adjacent to the clubhouse have been set up to be used for different aspects of your game – one for chipping and another one for putting. These areas will be expanded in an upgrade that will see new grasses put in place. Golf Club Rental Sets Phoenix features top quality Taylormade and Titleist rental clubs. To ensure that you reserve the set that best suits your game, please contact Phoenix ahead of time with your requirements.

golf as well as Company Functions, Private Parties, Weddings, Product Launches, Seminars, Clinics and other activities. Wifi is available throughout the clubhouse, and PA systems, screens, microphones, and stages or lecterns can be set up in any room. To organize your next event, company lunch, Christmas party or other function, please contact: marketingdirector@ phoenixgolfgolf.com Meet the General Manager Nathawat Aksornchat joined Phoenix Gold Golf & Country Club as General Manager in October 2014, and has already had a very positive impact both on the course and behind the scenes in making changes to membership programs, administration and course management. This friendly 52-year old Thai has already had a very busy and varied career in the golf industry both here in Thailand and in the States. One of the first Thais to study golf management abroad, Nat graduated from the San Diego Golf Academy in California, returning to Thailand where he has worked with Dynasty, Rose Garden, Palm Hills and Thana City.

Lakes 1-9: The Lakes Course challenges the golfers to keep their golf drives on line as well as finding a good layup position for the green and final putt for a well-earned par. Many beautiful ponds, small lakes and few wellplaced trees and bunkers challenge the golfer’s abilities. A reviewed layout with many changes is being completed and should be ready for play soon. The designer promises that the new layout will be more fun and challenging to play. Facilities Clubhouse The spacious clubhouse with its iconic sunshine-colored, tiled roof has become famous as an inviting landmark for both local and international golfers (the GPS coordinates are: 12.819165, 100.952386). Pro Shop Open from 5:30am to 6:00pm, the pro shop is fully stocked with a wide range of brand name apparel and accessories, as well as a number of souvenir items to help you remember your experience at Phoenix. Restaurant The bright air-conditioned coffee shop adjacent to the staging area seats 60 and serves

Golf Carts Phoenix is proud to operate a fleet of 240 Club Car golf carts. While carts are optional for groups of up to four players, with a policy of one player per cart, they are mandatory for groups of five. Caddies The well-trained and experienced team of over 280 caddies are experts at helping you negotiate the course and read the greens, and add a special flavor to the golfing experience in this magical Kingdom. Meeting Rooms The clubhouse is a wonderful place to hold special events of all kinds. We offer four meeting/function rooms of varying sizes that are ideal for a group get-together after

As a professional and accredited golf instructor, he is still a very handy golfer himself and enjoys taking part in some of the tournaments held at the club. Nat added that apart from the upgrades to the course and clubhouse, they club plans to host a major new international golf tournament at the course in the second half of 2016.

Les Walsh Minister M: +66 81 919 7639 E: minister@theministryofgolf.com

September – October 2016

7


CanCham News

Solar Energy in Thailand:

By Mike Thomas, MGA candidate at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Commercial Coordinator at CanCham Thailand

I

In 1979, U.S. President Jimmy Carter stood in front of a solar water heater atop the White House and declared that America could derive 20 percent of its energy from solar power by the year 2000. Thirty-seven years later, the United States remains far from this goal. In a global context, solar power still exists as a runt among the giants of the oil and gas industries. However, over the last decade there have been emerging signs indicating that this will not always be the case. It appears that the world is finally starting to take seriously the benefits of sustainable energy sources in general. While these sources of energy can take on many forms in Thailand and around the world, none may be as sustainable, as efficient, or as cost-effective as solar. This is especially true in the Thai context, where sun and heat are in obvious abundance. A Tale of Two Energy Problems: Security and Sustainability The greatest motivators for countries to increase their use of solar are environmental sustainability and energy security. While both are important in Thailand, energy security presents a greater need for improvement. The country’s energy security issues come mostly from its lack of self-sufficiency (as of 2013, 70% of its primary supply was imported)1 and its growing gap between supply and demand. An increase in the use of renewable resources could tackle both of these issues simultaneously. The Government has recognized energy security as a problem. In response, it has made securing Thailand’s energy supply one of the highest priorities on its energy policy agenda, identifying the increased use of renewable energy sources as a way to do this.2 With

8

Voyageur

regards to Thailand’s sustainability problem, renewables can again provide a solution. Approximately 75% of Thailand’s final energy consumption4 still comes from fossil fuels,3 and natural gas makes up over two thirds of Thailand’s energy consumption. This combination of fossil fuel reliance and lack of energy diversification is another major problem facing Thailand’s energy landscape. Luckily, it is another problem that has been recognized by the government and one that can be solved by an increase in the use of renewables. The Most Promising Option for Sustainable Energy There is little doubt that renewables are the best way to simultaneously increase energy security and environmental sustainability in Thailand, but why should the government and investors be prioritizing solar over wind, waste or biofuels? The answer lies in the potential each source has for energy generation. It is estimated that on an annual basis, Thailand has the potential to generate 631.29 megawatts (MW) of energy from burning solid waste, 4,567 MW from burning sewage and biogas, and 14,141 MW from wind sources. Over the same period of time, solar could generate 42,356 MW,5 more than double that of all the previously mentioned sources combined. Coupled with solar’s status as the fastest-growing source of renewable energy in Thailand,6 this potential is a strong incentive for both the Thai government and investors to increase their promotion of solar. To the government’s credit, they have directed significant focus to supporting the solar industry, announcing plans to have over 30,000 MW of solar energy installed by 2021.7 Investors would be wise to contribute the same degree of support. Along with rapid growth and the potential for high energy generation, the long-run costs of solar serve as a strong argument for its prioritization over other renewable sources. While initial costs for things like installation or research and development are higher for solar than they are for wind or the burning of waste, solar panels typically have no moving parts and can therefore last over 35 years8 without the requirement of any major maintenance. This results in very low post-installation costs. By comparison, windmills often require costly repairs or replacements of parts.

Additionally, the overall cost of solar has fallen dramatically since 2010 and continues to do so. Barriers Facing Thailand’s Solar Industry Growth Despite solar’s promising outlook in Thailand, the industry still faces major issues with securing investment and overcoming inefficient bureaucratic practices. Concerning the former, Tom Griffin, CEO of Baryon, a company specializing in rooftop solar projects, says that securing investment for solar projects can be especially difficult when dealing with residential, off-grid projects. “It can be difficult to convince investors that the risk level is acceptable when they set up a roof-based solar project on private property, since that raises issues of uncertainty,” Griffin says. It is not possible to enter private property to recover panels, so it is difficult to ensure that the solar panels will be recovered if the customer does not keep up with their payments. This could result in lost capital, a major perceived risk for investors. Such risks are impactful to the industry in its entirety, as installing rooftop panels on private property can allow solar companies to avoid certain bureaucratic barriers facing gridconnected solar farms, making rooftop solar a major area of potential growth for the industry. Griffin also states that while at the surface, solar power seems simple, there are many variables that go into establishing solar projects. This creates uncertainty, and uncertainty deters investors. Such deterrence must be overcome by those seeking investment. As solar becomes more mainstream and potential investors become warier of all variables involved, it will at least be diminished. Barriers arising from inefficient bureaucratic practices pertain mainly to solar farms and power plants. Various license requirements must be fulfilled before solar power plants can be constructed and connected with the grid, and the establishment of solar farms by foreign companies can be an issue due to the Thailand Land Code, which prohibits foreign land ownership.9 There is also the issue of securing Power of Purchasing Agreements (PPAs); the long-term contracts for buying electricity generated from independent producers. PPAs are important to the financing of grid-connected solar projects, as they


CanCham News

Sunny Days Ahead provide a long-term revenue stream.10 If the government is to play a sufficiently supportive role in Thailand’s solar industry, it will need to consider the impacts of such factors as the Thailand Land Code and the need for PPAs. Government Support for Solar Successive Thai governments have set some of the most ambitious targets in ASEAN for renewable energy.11 The current government’s goal is to have 25% of Thailand’s energy consumption coming from renewable energy sources by 2021.12 A significant share of this number would come from solar. The challenge now is for the government to turn its ambitions into results by employing effective incentives. Under the 10-year Alternative Energy Development Plan (AEDP), the Ministry of Energy has identified specific incentives, or “strategic initiatives”, that it plans to employ to promote the use of renewable energy.13 It plans to carry these out through several tax-based and non-tax-based incentives. The tax-based incentives include exemptions from or reductions of import duties on machinery and raw materials that will be used in renewable energy projects,14 as well as corporate income tax exemptions and reductions to companies that are undertaking renewable energy projects. Non-taxbased incentives (likely more effective) include permission to bring in foreign workers, permission to own land, and in some cases, the entitlement to majority or total foreign ownership.15 This last

incentive could be especially important for the Thai solar industry, as foreign expertise would benefit Thai consumers while allowing domestic producers to learn from more established companies. How do Canadian Companies fit into the Mix? In keeping with the importance of having foreign solar companies operating in Thailand, it is evident that Canada in particular has the potential to play a significant role here. This is based on the success of Canada’s own solar industry, which is well-established, to say the least. Canada is home to around 650 solar companies, and its renewable sector as a whole employs over 71,000 people. Companies based in Canada can offer mature solar technologies and services to meet varied needs along with well-established links to global supply chains and distribution channels. While there are a few Canadian solar companies such as AMP Solar that are currently active in Thailand, a greater influx of Canadian solar companies into the Thai market would be beneficial to the Thai solar industry. This, in turn, would be beneficial to Thai energy security and sustainability. Moving Forward While the greater adoption of solar is important to tackle the dual issues of energy security and environmental sustainability, an increase in the use of solar energy alone is not enough. Other renewable sources such as wind

and the burning of waste will have to be supported as well if Thailand is to adequately address these major energyrelated problems. Additional consideration must also be directed toward areas of consumption in which solar energy production is not a significant contributor. The transportation sector, currently the largest energy-consuming sector in Thailand,16 is especially important. Another issue that must be addressed for solar energy that is intended for public consumption is the quality of Thailand’s electricity grid. Given the fact that solar energy is intermittent, electricity grid systems will need to be upgraded with new technologies to absorb solar energy.17 Tackling these solar-related issues will need to be the next step in Thailand’s incorporation of a higher degree of solar energy generation. For now, the first step must be the greater adoption of solar generation itself. Looking back at President Carter’s optimistic solar ambitions in 2016, it is clear that they were premature. Current expectations that the golden age of solar is just around the corner may not be as hasty as his expectation was. The leader of the free world discussing the looming glory of solar energy stirred up more image than it did substance in 1979. Today, the substance is there. It will continue to grow as the world turns to solar and other renewables on a more regular basis. Thailand must be a part of that. With proper investment and government support, it will be.

1 http://www.eiu.com/industry/article/1271050911/thailand-pushing-for-renewable-energy/2013-10-15. 2 http://www.renewableenergy-asia.com/Portals/0/seminar/Presentation/04-Overview%20of%20Alternative%20Energy%20 Development%20Plan%20(AEDP%202015).pdf. 3 http://www.renewableenergy-asia.com/Portals/0/seminar/Presentation/04-Overview%20of%20Alternative%20Energy%20 Development%20Plan%20(AEDP%202015).pdf. 4 http://www.slideshare.net/boinyc/thailands-alternative-energy-industry. 5 http://www.renewableenergy-asia.com/Portals/0/seminar/Presentation/04-Overview%20of%20Alternative%20Energy%20 Development%20Plan%20(AEDP%202015).pdf. 6 http://www.eiu.com/industry/article/1271050911/thailand-pushing-for-renewable-energy/2013-10-15. 7 http://www.eiu.com/industry/article/1271050911/thailand-pushing-for-renewable-energy/2013-10-15. 8 http://blog.solarcity.com/the-facts-of-light-how-long-do-solar-panels-last. 9 https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/thailand-solar-energy-projects-dr.-ulrich. 10 https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/thailand-solar-energy-projects-dr.-ulrich. 11 http://www.eiu.com/industry/article/1271050911/thailand-pushing-for-renewable-energy/2013-10-15. 12 http://www.slideshare.net/boinyc/thailands-alternative-energy-industry. 13 http://www.slideshare.net/boinyc/thailands-alternative-energy-industry. 14 http://www.slideshare.net/boinyc/thailands-alternative-energy-industry. 15 http://www.slideshare.net/boinyc/thailands-alternative-energy-industry. 16 Tanatvanit, Somporn, Bundit Limmeechokchai and Supachart Chungpaibulpatana. “Sustainable Energy Development Strategies: Implications of Energy Management and Renewable Energy in Thailand,” Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 7 (2003): 367-395. 17 http://www.adb.org/news/speeches/solar-energy-potential-asia-and-pacific-takehiko-Nakao. September – October 2016

9


Member News

Mandarin Oriental

undergoes comprehensive renovation

I

In this, its 140th anniversary year, the Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok, has completed a comprehensive renovation of the historic Authors’ and Garden Wings. Designed to significantly enhance the facilities and services of this award-winning hotel, the renovation has restored the historic heart of the property to its original splendour. The project comprised a significant rooms reconfiguration resulting in the creation of a selection of spacious suites, including Bangkok’s grandest presidential suite - a six-bedroom, 600 square metre Grand Royal Suite that occupies the entire first floor of the renowned Authors’ Wing, which was the original Oriental hotel, built in 1876 – and twelve brand new suites with balconies in the Garden Wing.

gardens and include a lounge, dining room, pantry, powder room and a balcony. The bedroom features a large marble bathroom with separate bathtub, a walk-in shower, double vanity and a walk-in closet. The suites’ contemporary interior design combines the hotel’s unique colonial inspired heritage and Thai culture. The highly acclaimed Le Normandie French fine dining restaurant has also been rejuvenated with a contemporary interpretation of its original grandeur. The new interior preserves the classic elegance of one of Asia’s

In the Garden Wing, four new spa studios offer exclusive world renowned beauty treatments for the first time in Bangkok, including Bastien Gonzalez PEDI:MANI:CURE and QMS Medicosmetics. “We are delighted to unveil the results of this far-reaching renovation as we celebrate our 140th year of delivering legendary hospitality,” said Amanda Hyndman, General Manager of Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok. “The Authors’ and Garden Wings are the heart and soul of this historic property, and this comprehensive renovation has extended

The six-bedroom, 600 square metre Grand Royal Suite is Bangkok’s grandest presidential suite and occupies the entire first floor of the renowned Authors’ Wing, which was the original Oriental Hotel, built in 1876. The suite has private elevator access and incorporates the one-bedroom, 315 square metre Royal Suite and the adjoining 165 square metre Ambassador Suite with two bedrooms, as well as three further separate guest rooms for family and entourage. There is ample stately meeting and hosting spaces, including a spacious formal lounge, a second living room, a study and a dining room for twelve guests with a fully equipped kitchen and a luxurious bar pantry. A beautiful light-filled Victorian-inspired glass conservatory offers best loved French restaurants, together with striking new features such as handcrafted chandeliers. A new wine cellar featuring top selections of both Old and New World wines, a customized dessert trolley and Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok’s legendary tableside service complete this fine dining experience.

further dining for six guests and relaxed lounge seating. The 140-year-old building’s restored original open balcony affords stunning vistas over the tropical gardens of the Authors’ Wing and the majestic River of Kings. The new 80 square metre Garden Suites, some with split level layout, all boast floorto-ceiling windows overlooking the river and

12

Voyageur

The renowned Authors’ Lounge – a favourite destination for afternoon tea, society weddings and elegant events – has been restored to its classic late-nineteenth-century design and has been further extended to flow seamlessly through to the hotel’s riverside terrace and gardens via four salons named after famous authors who were guests of the hotel: Joseph Conrad, Somerset Maugham, Noël Coward and James Michener. Here the famed hotel’s longstanding affinity with the literary world is exemplified with images of these literary greats juxtaposed with scenes taken at the hotel during those eras, quotations from their books, and in some cases, signed books on display.

Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok’s unique urban resort environment, allowing guests to enjoy the extensive river frontage to its fullest,” she added. Built in 1876 and ideally located on the banks of the Chao Phraya River, Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok has been an inspiration to a host of world-renowned writers from Joseph Conrad, Somerset Maugham to Wilbur Smith and John Le Carre. Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok boasts an international reputation for splendid service, style and grace and facilities including eight restaurants. The hotel’s private teakwood shuttle boats provide daily access to the world famous Thai Cooking School, the hotel’s Thai restaurant, the award-winning Oriental Spa and Health Centre located across the River; as well as the nearest skytrain station (SaphanTaksin) and River City Shopping Centre.


CanCham News

Canada names new Ambassador to Thailand Donica Pottie has become Canada's new Ambassador to the Kingdom of Thailand, succeeding Philip Calvert, who will be returning to Canada. Donica (BA, Asian Studies, St. Mary’s University, 1985) joined External Affairs and International Trade Canada in 1991. She was third and second secretary at the embassy in China (1993 to 1996), served in assignments at the embassy in Jordan as head of the political section (1999 to 2002) and was ambassador to Cambodia (2004 to 2007). She was the director of several divisions: Democracy and Governance Policy (2007 to 2010), Development Policy and Institutions (2012 to 2013) and Peace Operations and Fragile States Policy (2013 to 2015). In 2015, she became director general of consular operations. She is married to Scot Slessor, and they have a daughter, Sophie.

KIS class of 2016 are awarded 1.3 Million US dollars worth of University scholarships and are accepted to top universities worldwide The KIS community congratulates the class of 2016! KIS is very proud to let you know that 32 of its graduating students this year have received 140 offers from 96 universities around the world.

Offers include these from top ranked universities:

University of Michigan, University of Chicago, New York University, Georgia Tech, Boston University, Northeastern University, Northwestern University, Carnegie Mellon, Purdue, Johns Hopkins, Syracuse, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, University of British Columbia, University of Toronto, University College London, Imperial College London, Durham University, Warwick University, Exeter University, Hong Kong University, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Chulalongkorn, and Thammasat. In addition, KIS’s graduating class received more than US$1.3 Million worth of university scholarships. Many of KIS’s graduates have been at KIS for 10 years or more and these wonderful offers are a testimony to the students’ achievements in and out of the classroom, through the IB Diploma, the CAS programs and throughout their education at KIS. KIS wishes them success for the next chapter of their lives and encourage them to inspire and be inspired. More information please visit www.kis.ac.th.

ABOUT KIS KIS International School is an IB World School, offering the International Baccalaureate for children from 3- 18 years old. This academically rigorous and balanced curriculum consists of the Primary Years Programme, the Middle Years Programme and the IB Diploma. KIS is a medium-sized school with a warm and caring atmosphere. The campus, located close to the centre of town, is green and spacious and has elaborate facilities. Our exceptional, vibrant and supportive teachers encourage our students’ love of learning. KIS graduates go to excellent universities around the world.

KIS International School is licensed by the Thai Ministry of Education. It is an active member of the International Schools Association of Thailand (ISAT) and East Asia Regional Council of Schools (EARCOS). KIS is authorised by the International Baccalaureate and is an accredited member of the Council of International Schools (CIS). www.kis.ac.th Contact: Linda Belonje Director of Marketing and Development KIS International School Tel: 02-2743444 ext 4116, Email: linda@kis.ac.th

September – October 2016

13


Member News

The Flow House Bangkok – Experience it!!

B

Beat the heat and traffic with Bangkok’s only urban beach club featuring a FlowRider® simulated wave surfing machine, located in Flow House Bangkok, the complex also features a bar, restaurant & plunge pool – you will get everything you need to chill and relax and get away from all the stresses of chaotic Bangkok in one easy-to-reach downtown location. FlowRider® was developed in San Diego, and there are around 100 machines worldwide, Bangkok’s FlowRider® was opened 3 years ago by Jay Bunnag and his two partners. “We wanted to do something unique and sporty with a positive vibe that could be enjoyed and accessed by a wide cross-section of people, either for sport or leisure,’ says Jay. “We also wanted to create a beach environment that could be enjoyed by families.” “There aren’t many new activities in Bangkok, most are based around the shopping mall, traditional tourist attractions, or expensive sports clubs — there was nothing like Flow House or FlowRider® here before.” At Flow House Bangkok, instruction and equipment are included in the fee, and though you do share the machine with others, Flow House only sells a maximum of twenty tickets an hour, so the queue is never too long and the instructors ensure that everyone gets an equal amount of time on the wave. “Basically, you just need to show up with your shorts and you are good to go,” Jay says. Entry to Flow House Bangkok is totally free and the rack-rate price is Bt750 per hour for access to the wave, there are a variety of passes and daily promotions however that reduce the price considerably.

The company’s retail partner is Rip Curl, which has an official shop on site, and sponsors competitions throughout the year. There are also FlowRiders® in Phuket, Kuala Lumpur (in a water park), Singapore, Saipan and they will soon open in Manila and Bali. There’s even an Asian Flow Tour, so the sport is growing quickly. Jay says most kids get the hang of FlowRider® very quickly, “it’s a perfect introduction to water and board sports, they can pick it up in an hour. We get a lot of positive feedback from parents too because their kids now have somewhere else to hang out other than the mall and something else to do besides staying at home watching TV or playing video games.” The FlowRider® appeals to a variety of board-sports athletes – surfing, snowboard-

ing, wakeboarding, skimboarding, skateboarding – and the learning curve takes time, but is steep as riders progress from riding in a prone position on bodyboards, to standing up on flowboards, to doing ollies and flip tricks. The first ride on a FlowRider® can turn into a life-time addiction, as first-time riders become repeat riders, and repeat riders become lifetime loyalists.

Children’s Parties

Flow House Bangkok is now one of the top destinations for kids birthday parties, the FlowRider can be rented out in either single lane or whole wave configuration so it is perfect for hosting small, medium and large groups of kids! There are also a variety of private rooms to choose from all backed up by professional catering and an in-house party organiser who makes every Flow House Bangkok kids birthday party an event to remember!

School Bookings

International and Thai Schools are now booking their students in for weekly FlowBoarding courses as part of their physical education programs during term-time; during the holiday season Flow House Bangkok also accepts group bookings for School Camps as well as offering an in-house school kids camp programme.

Professional Event Space

Flow House Bangkok provides a totally unique setting for professional planning and execution. If you need help putting together a surprise party, a BBQ with friends, a wedding celebration, an office party, or a specialized menu or banquet function, the experienced sales and F&B team take care of all the planning, preparation and execution leaving you to enjoy the party.

14

Voyageur


Flow House Bangkok is the ideal location for private groups and corporate bookings. The unique environment creates the ideal board sport lifestyle experience; using the FlowRider® as a dramatic backdrop and the Flow House can create a dramatic backdrop and create unique events for you or your company. Facilities include private & secure function room facilities, a private bar and dining areas, secure locker rooms, all fully air-conditioned and wired with full A/V & WiFi support. There is also a generous outdoor shaded recreational area that is perfect for challenging team-building exercises, cocktail parties and presentations. Flow House Bangkok is perfect for: • Professional Meetings • Team Building Exercises • Product Launches • Press Conferences & Campaign Launches • Exhibition Space • Concerts and Fashion Shows • Private Lunches, Dinner events and Cocktail Parties • Wedding Parties and any party!. Chang Surf Bar – the Flow House bar. The Chang Surf Bar shows another side to Flow House Bangkok – delicious homemade Pizza, awesome prime beef Burgers, amazing Hot-Dogs and delicious Thai-Food.

On the first and second floor and offering a jaw-dropping view of the FlowRider is the Chang Surf Bar, multiple flat screen TVs show the latest live sports action from the EPL, NFL, NHL and F1, there’s also a games room featuring a Dartboard, Pool table and Foosball table.

Flow-Motion

Flow House Bangkok’s main private activity room is available for hire for any private events from meetings & seminars space to Yoga and Dance classes.

Location

Flow House Bangkok is open every day of the year including public holidays. It is located downtown on Sukhumvit Soi 26 inside the A-Square community mall; opposite K-Village and Big-C. Hours are MonFri 2pm-11pm; Sat-Sun & Public Holidays 10am-11pm. Contact Info: (+66) 81 348 3304 info@flowhousebangkok.com www.flowhousebangkok.com www.facebook.com/FlowHouseBangkok

September – October 2016

15


Opinion

Canada: an example for others?

I

In recent Voyageur articles, I’ve warned about the worrying signs regarding Canada’s economic prospects: particularly the clear view of an impending bubble burst notwithstanding the impossibility – because of the sheer scale and scope of unprecedented global uncertainties – to forecast when that will actually happen. Canada may arguably be towards the top of the G7 bubble charts, but it isn’t exactly alone in being vulnerable to a future crisis – the US, the EuroZone and the UK are running blindly into a debt deflation crisis. Japan has been trapped there for a quarter of a century. As for China: whether Beijing admits it or not, it is currently engaged in something akin to the economic equivalent of striking matches against a tank full of propane. Despite my concerns for the economy, I still see Canada in a much more positive light than the US and my home country, the UK. In fact, if I hadn’t come over to live here in Thailand, I think I’d be considering living in Canada right now. That thought has partly come to mind because of what I have seen of the UK recently. For a country that prides itself on open-mindedness and tolerance, some of the recent politicking – particularly in the run up to the recent referendum on its membership of the EU – has been deeply embarrassing. I’ll spare you the details of that debate but, suffice it to say, that it has revealed some elements of the British media and political classes that are far from flattering. I’m convinced the UK’s exit from the EU is in fact a first step to global economic normalisation. Even so, amidst the barefaced lies passed on as socio-economic facts, and statistics so exaggerated they’d make an American presidential candidate blush, there emerged one sharp reality: Britain is not as forwardthinking as some would like to think and the great halls of Westminster are seemingly occupied by remnants from the Jurassic era. My thoughts during this time have occasionally turned towards Canada because of an article I came across a couple of months ago in the British newspaper The Guardian, which sug-

16

Voyageur

gested that Canada was a vision of what a progressive Britain could be. Of course it’s easy for someone to discuss the virtues of a certain country when they’ve never lived there. I seem to remember a French doctor praising the UK National Health Service on the radio once and saying how he’d like to see France move closer to that system. Yet many of those who have experienced both systems say the total opposite. Nevertheless, the article spoke of how Canada is living through the same economic and social difficulties as other developed countries: banking crises, recessions, attempted terrorist attacks followed by a shootout in parliament. Yet the response hasn’t been, on the face of it, one of populist protectionism or nationalism. On the contrary, the government has welcomed 25,000 Syrian refugees with open arms – particularly impressive given Canada’s small population in relation to others who have been much more restrictive on refugee numbers. It certainly seems from the outside that Canada remains tolerant even in the most testing circumstances. You may argue that’s because there’s plenty of room, yet there is a large concentration of people in just six cities; four of which have populations over a million people and two are in the 900,000s. In addition to that, Canada came in 6th in the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network’s World Happiness Report. Published in March of this year, the report measures GDP per capita, social support, healthy life expectancy, freedom to make life choices, generosity and trust. The US came in 13th despite lower taxes (and the right to bear arms!). So there probably is some meaning to radio DJ Rob Calabrese’s call for Americans to emigrate to underpopulated Nova Scotian island Cape Breton, if Donald Trump wins the US presidential election. Judging by the number of hits his website has received, there seems to be some genuine interest. Of course the situation can’t be all as rosy as the article suggests. It is incredibly progressive, if not depressingly rare, to see Justin Trudeau select ministers who actually have experience in the area of their portfolios. Although, given

the track record of mainstream economists before, during and after the global financial crisis, appointing Bill Morneau, who has a Master’s Degree in Economics from INSEAD, may not be as wise at looks on paper. Even though the Bank of Canada has resisted temptation to reduce its already negligible base interest rate even further, it hasn’t raised it either: leaving it at just 0.5%. It may be designed to help boost demand by giving people greater access to credit but the whole reason Canada – and other major world economies – are in this mess in the first place, is the huge amount of private debt already out there. So Morneau’s credentials would raise enormously were he to persuade the Bank to erase Canadian private debt, normalize interest rates and asset prices and create conditions where individuals and corporations can expect to increase their income and earnings, enabling them, once again, to consume and spend without a debt overhang.. If that were to happen, we really could hold Canada up as a beacon of hope in an unstable world.

Paul Gambles, co-founder of MBMG Group MBMG Group is an advisory firm that assists expatriates and locals within the South East Asia Region with services ranging from Investment Advisory, Personal Advisory, Tax Advisory, Corporate Advisory, Insurance Services, Accounting & Auditing Services, Legal Services, Estate Planning and Property Solutions. For more information: Tel: +66 2665 2536 e-mail: info@mbmg-group.com Linkedin: MBMG Group Twitter: @MBMGIntl Facebook: /MBMGGroup

Please Note: While every effort has been made to ensure that the information contained herein is correct, I cannot be held responsible for any errors that may occur. My views may not necessarily reflect the house view of MBMG Group. Views and opinions expressed herein may change with market conditions and should not be used in isolation.


ARE YOU INFORMATION FAT?

Evidence shows that the use of paper is on a downward trend and there is now far more dependence on electronic information. Despite this, the paperless office still seems impossible. The processes and cultural change required to accomplish this goal are not as easy as everyone believes. Here are seven tips to kick-off your paper diet campaign: 1. Develop a retention policy Legal or auditing purposes and what paper records can be immediately destroyed. Plan ahead and prepare for upcoming audits.

2. Shred it Unwanted information must be securely destroyed. It’s not only impractical but unnecessary to retain everything no longer required. Crown can help define what should be securely disposed of and provide the means to do it. Secure destruction applies to paper waste, laptops, mobile phones, hard drives and uniforms.

3. Change management and education Employee behavior needs to change and should be encouraged by the leadership team implementing a clear strategy. Appointing paper champions who have an understanding of the new retention and destruction policies can be helpful, so individuals know who to go to with any queries or concerns.

4. Heavy paper to big data Digitize your information so you can access it quickly. A scanning and digitizing solution can be a start, leading to a professional records management programme that will not only reduce risk, but also provide faster access to information.

5. Ownership versus guardianship Whether you own the data or act as a guardian for it, all data is the responsibility of anyone who accesses it. Data duplication is a huge issue as it generally isn’t tracked and can be sat in someone’s inbox, private drive, shared drive, printed out or stuck on an internal server. Utilize your paper champions to drive training and incentives internally to promote the diet.

6. Carry out a print audit You’d be surprised at how much unnecessary print outs take place in your organization. By implementing a print management system that monitors paper used and its cost, money could be saved. This can be done by using password protected printers making users think twice before printing. Alternatively go on a paper diet or a paper fast. This can be achieved by limiting the amount of paper being used or unplugging the printers for a couple of days – the world won’t stop turning.

7. Stay paper light Once paper use is successfully reduced in your office, establish a strategy to maintain it. Everyone needs to take responsibility for the information around them and embrace the new strategy and polices to help govern data and limit paper use. Our paper diet has no fancy memberships and you can set your own paper weight loss target. For more information about Crown Records Management, visit www.crownrms.com/thailand or call +66 2 136 3746.

The power of memory


Take a Bite Out of the Big Mango! Bangkok welcomes hundreds of visitors and new residents every day, all undoubtedly hoping to get the most out of living in this unique and exciting city. When trying to make living in Bangkok an enjoyable endeavor, it’s important to keep in mind that Bangkok is an international city with residents from all corners of the world, many of whom have developed systems and services to help support many of Bangkok’s expat residents. One of the most common threads in the life of an expat is the uncertainty of living in a new place, where the customs and languages may be drastically different from anything you know back home. The question of where to go for what, and whom to seek out for what service, become very daunting tasks. This is why the annual Living in Bangkok event is held at Bumrungrad International Hospital, now in its 18th year. Our goal is to help Bangkok’s many expats and their families connect with the services that will make it easier to carve out meaningful and fulfilling lives within this new culture. This event attracts many major organizations and groups from the Bangkok community to one location, making it that much easier to find the right support without having to run around town collecting information. Create Healthy Routines It goes without saying that a healthy lifestyle is one of the most important things in life, if not the most important. Our lifestyles dictate what will happen to us in the future, whether we will enjoy aging healthy or face the possibility of aging with conditions that might have been prevented with a healthier lifestyle. The things we do every day, especially the habits we form that directly affect our well-being, are some of the most important decisions we’ll ever make. One of the things that people find challenging upon moving to a new place is maintaining the routines they have built for a healthy lifestyle. This catchy phrase of “healthy lifestyle” is of course made up of several steps and a series of choices that we make every day. In addition to eating well and getting plenty of exercise, choices like where to live, how to commute to work, what hours to work, also have an effect on our overall health, especially in the long run. So, knowing that our daily choices have an impact on our health, it’s important to carve out routines that add up to positive gains. Bangkok Living Done Right New residents will quickly learn that Bangkok is a city that lends itself very well to an active lifestyle. The city attracts people from all over the world, therefore the most exciting fitness trends and new diets always arrive on the scene. Of course, it’s also possible to start by making small changes such as going for a walk in one of Bangkok’s parks, or going for a bicycle ride around the city’s bike paths or walking trails. If you’re not sure where to even begin, just browse around the many exhibits that are available at this year’s Living in Bangkok event, all of which are a great start to starting off on your healthy journey, or reclaiming your old routines to get back on track. Never a Boring Day Bangkok is a lot of things, but boring is not one of them. This city has everything going on, sometimes all at once. The smart

resident knows that in the midst of the chaos is a finely tuned machine of a city, with a rhyme and reason for nearly everything. And what’s left as a result is a city of variety, with many choices for everything. The neighborhoods of Bangkok are a testament to this variety, with the riverside offering a glimpse into slow life while the crowds of Silom and Sukhumvit vibrate with the city’s frenetic pulse. Take advantage of this variety, and carve out a lifestyle that is balanced between the right amount of work and play. You can build new routines around your schedule, or shift your schedule to better suit your routines. Perhaps some morning yoga to get the day started right, or an evening run to cap off a productive day. Better yet, join a spin class at one of Bangkok’s many state of the art fitness centers, or challenge yourself by joining a CrossFit or Bootcamp class. There’s plenty more, and this city is teeming with places and opportunities in which to experience it all. Get Out There and Have Some Fun! This concrete jungle sure is congested, and it is often too hot and too loud to seem like an inviting place for some fun in the sun. However, look beyond the congested streets and venture out into the natural respites that are peppered around the city. Public parks are aplenty, and community fitness is a favorite pastime of many people here, including the local community. Nearly every day, people gather at the city parks for free, community-led aerobics classes or team sports like basketball while others walk, run, or ride their bikes around the

park and surrounding area. We are social creatures, and that’s why social connection platforms like Facebook and Meetup are so popular, especially among expats who are trying to find their new friends or build new social circles in their new city. These platforms are of course a great way to find others in your new city who may be interested in perhaps taking the same cooking classes, or going for a workout together. The city’s many fitness centers and recreational clubs are represented at this year’s Living in Bangkok event, ready to answer your questions eager to help provide you with some inspiration. Explore the Possibilities Living healthy in Bangkok is not a lofty goal, even if you’re not accustomed to the high temperature or may have trouble feeling confident among strangers. Take this opportunity to explore the many available alternatives to the traditional gym setting, or join a group that engages in your favorite sport. Of course, food is an important part of life, and especially so when living in Thailand. Bangkok is home to many culinary pioneers, and some of the best and healthiest food is within easy reach. For even more of a social activity, take a healthy cooking class and make some friends while learning a valuable new skill to add to your healthy lifestyle. All of this and more are readily available at this year’s Living in Bangkok event, and it’s a great way to start getting active and build a social life centered on activities that could add quality years to your life.


Eric Kenso Ward, ISB Class of 1979

International School Bangkok Bringing out the superhero in each of us since 1951. www.isb.ac.th

September – October 2016

19


Profile for CanCham Thailand

Voyageur july august final  

Voyageur july august final  

Advertisement