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April 2015 : Government Accomplishment after 6 Months

  • Government accomplishment after 6 months
  • Martial Law revoked - Section 44 to be exercised
  • Cabinet approved a 2.72 trillion Baht 2016 Budget Bill
  • Fishery Act revised to combat IUU fishing
  • Marine and Coastal Resources Management Act commenced
  • Mendicant Bill approved by Cabinet
  • Dusit Poll revealed general approval for government efforts
  • Baht 8,556 million farmers debt revoked
  • Strong earthquake 7.9 Richter hit Nepal
  • In-season rice crop insurance program
  • Cabinet approved to pay interest for rice mills
  • Economy is recovering
  • Summer storms swept countrywide
  • Temperature rose to 42.2 degree on 20 April

    Government 6 months accomplishment revealed

    On 17 April 2015, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and his cabinet members presented the governments 6-month performance focused on national security, the Southern crisis, and the reduction of social inequality and the stimulation of the economy.

    Gen Prayut affirmed that an election will be held according to the reform roadmap, providing that no new conflicts arise.

    Deputy Prime Minister M.R. Pridiyathorn Devakula, an economic advisor to the Thai government, addressed economic achievements that the countrys gross domestic product (GDP) for the fourth quarter of last year expanded by 2.3 percent while foreseeing a 3 percent GDP expansion in this years first quarter due to budget disbursements and new factory openings. He added that economic growth from the return of tourists to the Kingdom has greatly offset the drop in overall exports.

    Deputy Prime Minister Yongyut Yuthavong addressed the governments social related achievements particularly on reducing inequality and human development while revealing the governments plans on establishing an Education Super Board and to cultivate a lifetime learning mentality in Thai citizens.

    Deputy Foreign Minister Don Poramatwinai has detailed his Ministrys agenda on the development of quality personal in order to be competitive in the international arena.
    In addition, Minister to the Prime Ministers Office Suwaphan Tanyuwattana, talked about the governments effort to cut administrative costs and stimulate the wellbeing of small to medium enterprises through new sources of credit.

    Pamphlets containing government achievements in 11 policies; include the protection of the monarchy, national security, social equality, education, healthcare, economy, the role of Thailand in ASEAN, science and technology, natural resource preservation, anti-corruption efforts and the justice system, have also been distributed to the media.

    Martial Law revoked-Section 44 to be exercised

    On 20th May, the imposition of Martial Law was revoked and the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) would exercise their power accordingly to Section 44 of the Interim Constitution.

    Section 44 : For the sake of the reforms in any field, the promotion of love and harmony amongst the people in the nation, or the prevention, abatement or suppression of any act detrimental to national order or security, royal throne, national economy or public administration, whether the act occurs inside or outside the Kingdom, the Leader of the National Council for Peace and Order, with the approval of the National Council for Peace and Order, may issue any order or direct any action to be done, irrespective of whether the order or action would produce legislative, executive or judicial effect. Those orders or actions, as well as their observance, shall be deemed lawful, constitutional and final. After the exercise of such power, the President of the National Legislative Assembly and the Prime minister shall be informed thereof without delay.

    Deputy Prime Minister Wisnu Krau-Ngam remarked the revocation of Martial Law enable all cases proceeding in the military court to petition to the appeal and/or supreme military court. Censorship and ban on news and information remain but summon and detention are limited to a maximum of 7 days and authorized officers are restricted to commissioners only.

    Cabinet approved 2016 Budget Bill

    On 28th April, the cabinet resolved to approve the 2016 Budget Bill of 2.72 trillion Baht. The Bill anticipated total revenue of 2.33 trillion Baht but has a deficit of Baht 390 billion. 77.2% or Baht 2.1 trillion of the expenditure was allocated for regular expenditure and the most, Baht 520 billion goes to the Education Ministry. The Education Ministry fiscal budget is 3.8% increase to last year. The second most, Baht 402 billion, goes to the central budget and it is 7% higher than the previous year, too.

    Fishery Act revised to combat IUU fishing

    On 28th April, the revised 2015 Fishery Act was promulgated with principles to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing in Thailand. The law improves official oversight of Thai fisheries to better reflect current industry realities, establishes a fisheries management scheme and improves port-state measure in line with international standard. The fishery zone would be determined in three; the Coastal Marine Fishery Zone ; the offshore/Commercial Marine Fishery Zone ; and the Inland Fishery Zone.

    Marine and Coastal Resources Management Act commenced

    On 26th March, the Marine and Coastal Resource Management Act B.E 2558 were commenced with principles to protect marine and coastal resources. Committees on national and provincial levels would be established and the later shall comprises of relevant agencies officials and representatives from civil and community societal. They are dutiful to supervise resources management and to designate measures and criteria to protect and solve problems from coastal erosion. The Department of Marine and Coastal Resources Management officials have authority to urgently solve the severe and critical problems. Violations are subjected to 1-2 years imprisonment and Baht 100,000 -200,000 fine.

    Cabinet approved Mendicant Bill

    On 20th April, the cabinet resolved to approve the Mendicant draft Bill submitted by the Social Development and Human Security Ministry. The Bill has principles to define and restrict practices of begging while the performing of music and other plays in public area in exchange of free-will money are excluded. However, the performers shall inform officials in advance and act in line with criteria given by local officials.

    Dusit Poll reveals general approval of government efforts

    On 19th April, the poll conducted by Suan Dusit Rajabhat University on What do Thai families think of Gen Prayuts government? between April 6 12, with 1,278 respondents disclosed 81.22 percent have agreed that his administration has swiftly addressed the countrys problems, 79.5 percent that the country has successfully resumed peace and order, and 76.84 percent that General Prayut has successfully cracked down on corruption.

    Meanwhile, 85.05 percent have agreed with the governments policies to restore happiness, 64.24 percent with anti-graft policies, 59.15 percent with reconciliation policies and 57.28 percent with the governments societal restructuring efforts.

    Regarding their list of expectations, 82.94 percent of respondents included justice and transparency, 80.83 percent included a decrease in commodity prices, 78.33 percent included progress and stability, and 77.46 percent included prosperity.

    Meanwhile, 88.74% of the respondents were displease with the increased cost of living and consumers goods, 84.16% on the restriction of freedom of speech in public places and 79.69% think there were too many regulations issued by this government.

    Baht 8,556 million farmers debt revoked

    On 31st March, the cabinet resolved to annul a Baht 8,556 million debts in the agricultural household sector. A Baht 4,000 was owed by the Bank of Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives (BAAC) and another, Baht 4,556 million, owed by 9 funding units under the Agriculture Ministry. However, besides this Baht 4,000 million debt, BAACs has lent a total of Baht 116,000 million to 818,000 debtors.

    The revocation was a result from a survey conducted nationwide that agricultural household debts has recently increased after their income decreased at an average of Baht 600 per unit.

    7.9 Richter earthquake in Nepal

    On 25th April, a big earthquake of 7.9 Richter scale took place 80 kilometers from Gorkha the second largest city in Nepal. The intensity was felt in its neighboring countries India and China. The quake was the most powerful in the last 80 years and more than 6,600 death and 14,000 injuries were reported. Rescue operations could hardly reach many remote areas particularly the Everest Mountains where an avalanche has killed at least 19 people.

    Thai government immediately sent USD 200,000 to Nepal along with some basic supplies. Many private agencies also set up relief funds to aid the victims.

    Cabinet approved in-season rice crop insurance scheme

    On 28th April, the cabinet resolved the year crop rice insurance scheme that covers 7 kinds of natural disasters; flooding or heavy rain, draught, rain-shortage or dry spell in monsoon season, cold or frost, hail, fire and plague. The scheme covers a total agricultural area of 1.5 million rai and the insurers who paid Baht 60-100 per rai receive Baht 1,111 per rai upon damages from 5 natural disasters and Baht 555 per rai for damages from pest and epidemics. The government would add a subsidiary of Baht 64.12 to 383.64 per rai to the insurance premium. It was anticipated that Baht 476.4 million would be used for subsidiary.

    Cabinet approved to pay loan interest for rice mills

    On 8th April, the cabinet resolved to allocate a budget of Baht 582 million to pay interest of loans occurred from 9 state programs. Previously, the government had encouraged rice mills to buy the 2015 off-season rice crop. The programs commenced between 16 February to 31 May 2015 and a total loan of Baht 38,769.54 million was provided by state and commercial banks to 140 rice mills in 34 provinces at a 3% interest rate.

    Economy is recovering

    On 21st April, the National Economic and Social Development Board disclosed economy in the last 6 months, from 12 September 2014 to 12 March 2015, was recovering due to political stability in the nation. The minus 0.5 GDP in the first quarter of 2014 had risen to plus 3% and if export sector improves, a 3.5-4.5 % increase could be anticipated by the end of 2015.

    Summer storms swept countrywide

    On 7-8 April, several areas countrywide were hit by sever summer storms. Casualties were reported from Chantaburi province where the storms swept through hundreds rai of Durian orchard. In Nong Bau Lampoo and Chainart provinces, thunderstorms and strong wind blew for more than two hours ripped off large cutouts, big trees and buildings along the highways for more than 15 km. In Mae Hong Sorn, big trees fell down and blocked traffic for hours.

    In Nakorn Pathon province, many streets and building in the municipal were flooded and the water was high until inaccessible for cars in some areas. In Sattahip district, Chonburi province traffic stuck several kilometers for hours after three electricity posts fell over roofs and cars. Fortunately, no one was injured in the incident.

    In Bangkok, off-season rain poured down heavily making traffic standstill in many major roads. Some few big trees fell in several residential areas including Rama 9 neighborhood.

    20 April the hottest day

    The Meteorology Department announced 20th April would be the hottest day in several north, northeast and central regions and the hottest spot is in Loei province in the northeast where the temperature would reach 42.2 degree Celsius. Sukhotai province could be the second hottest. The Department warned summer storms could happen in several areas between 21-26 April.

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