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November 2019 : Cabinet Endorsed Declaration to Combat Transnational Organized Crime

  • Cabinet endorsed declaration to combat transnational organized crime
  • Southern Pracharat schools get baht 3.4 billion subsidy
  • Cabinet approved 3 economic measures
  • CC ruled Thanathorn guilty on media shares holding
  • Government loosed Section 44 votes
  • Toxic committee prolongs substances ban
  • Cabinet approved regulations on special local administrators
  • Cabinet approved Chim-Shop-Chai phase 3
  • Cabinet approved no single use plastic bags in 2021
  • EC ordered FFP to submit documents on party loans
  • BMA will start underground cable project

    Cabinet endorsed declaration to combat transnational organized crime

          On 26 November, the cabinet resolved to endorse seven declarations on the combatting of transnational organized crime, previously agreed by the ASEAN ministers during the 13th symposium held in Bangkok during 25-29 November.

          Transnational organized crime (TOC) is organized crime coordinated across national borders, involving groups or markets of individuals working in more than one country to plan and execute illegal business ventures such as conveying drugs, conveying arms, trafficking for sex, toxic waste disposal, mineral theft and poaching.

    Southern Pracharat schools subsidy baht 3.4 billion

          On 26 November, the cabinet resolved on a principle to allocate 3,416.54 million baht to 64 schools in the southernmost provinces; Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat and Songkla. The schools have a total of 5,049 students. The budget will be divided for educational media, building construction and equipment, and school meals, 1,361 mb, 1,031.37 mb, and 2,252.36 mb. respectively.

          The program named Pracharat Schools is initiated since 2017 to make district schools to full board for students without parents/supporters or affected from violence.

    Cabinet approved 3 economic stimulations

          On 26 November, the cabinet approved 3 economic stimulation measures, as follow:
    1. The strengthening of grass root economy; Upgrading 71,742 villages infrastructure with maximum allocation 200,000 baht each total budget 14,348.4 million baht. Community loans project through the Bank of Agriculture and Cooperatives total budget 50,000 million baht 0.01 interest rate 3 years term and Moratorium for village and community loans.
    2. Rice Farmers subsidy of 500 baht per rai, maximum 20 rai per household or not exceed than 10,000 baht per household. Farmers must registered with the Agricultural Promotion Department.
    3. A discount of 50,000 baht each on house mortgages to family having less than 100,000 baht monthly income, or 1,200,000 annually. Registration opens on 11 December, 2019.

    Government loosed Section 44 votes

          On 27 November, the House of Representatives voted with 234 to 230 and 2 abstentions to set up a panel to study impacts of orders issued under Section 44 of the National Council for Peace and Order. The motion was proposed by the opposition Future Forward Party secretary-general

    CC ruled Thanathorn guilty of media shares holding

          On 20 November, the Constitutional Court ruled Future Forward Party leader Mr. Thanathorn Jungroongruangkit guilty of violating the Constitution by still holding shares in a media company when he registered to run in the March election.

          Thanathorn was accused by the Election Commission of still holding 675,000 shares in his family-owned V Luck Media Company when he registered to run in the March general election. In his defence, Tanathorn insisted that despite its name, the company was not a mass media entity in the general sense as it published only an in-flight and a glossy lifestyle magazines. He also tried to prove that he had transferred all the shares in question to his mother prior to registering to run I the election.

          Article 98 of the constitution prohibits proprietors or share-holders of media companies to run in elections out of fear they would have undue political influence.

          The court dismissed Thanathorns defence on both points and ordered his MP status revoked effective as of May 23 when he was suspended from active duty as MP.

    NHSC extends ban on 3 chemical toxics

          On 27 November, the National hazardous Substances Committee ( NHSC) revoked the ban of three toxic farm chemical, paraquat, glyphosate and chlorpyrifos, effective on 1 December 2019 to 1 June 2020.

          The committee assigns the Agriculture Ministry to find alternative substances or other means including measures to lessen impact on related sectors including on public health within 4 months.

    Regulations on special local administrator approved

          On 19 November, the cabinet approved on two ministerial regulations, proposed by Interior Ministry, on local administrator of special zone and on political position in the local administrative authority.

          The regulations are forwarded to the Council of State.

    Cabinet approved Chim-Shop-Chai phase 3

          On 12 November, the cabinet approved the Chim-Shop-Chai phase 3 for registration on 14 November.

          More 2 million new registrars, 500,000 privilege allocates to the elderly, will receive cash back refund into electronic purses, 1.15% and 2.20%, from their expenditures, on tour packages, accommodations, domestic travel land and air and other related services, of 30,000 baht and 30,000-50,000 baht respectively, maximum 8,500 baht, starting from mid-December.

          The scheme is also extended to until 31 January 2020.

    Cabinet approved to ban single use plastic bags

          On 12 November, the cabinet approved the Natural Resources and Environment Ministrys proposal on to reduce and ban single use plastic bags, starting from 1 January 2021.

          The ministry and 43 private business partners, including department stores and convenience stores agreed to launch a pilot project campaign - no single use plastic bags on 1 January 2020 and no plastic bags on 1 January 2021.

          These 43 associates accounted for 30 percent or 13,500 million plastic bags annually. The rest 70% or 30,000 million came from local grocers, fresh markets and others. They are the next target to be included in the campaign.

          It is anticipated the campaign can reduce approximately 780,000 tons per year, saving waste disposal cost baht 3,900 million per year and reduce emission 1,200,000 ton-carbon dioxide per year.

          The Pollution Control Department is trying to enforce a law on no plastic bags. According to the draft bill, plastics are divided into 7 categories; Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET or PETE), High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE), Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC), Low-Density Polyethylene (LDPE), Polypropylene (PP), Polystyrene or Styrofoam (PS), and Miscellaneous Plastics. Single-use plastic bags-cups/ containers will be replaced with eco-friendly materials while plastic wastes and containers will be 100 percent re-use and recycle.

    EC orders FFP to submit documents on party loans

           On 27 November, the Election Commission (EC) orders Future Forward Party (FFP) to submit documents on its leader Thanathorn Juangroonruangkit lending money to his own party, which may be a violation of election and political party law according to article 66 of Political Party Act B.E. 2560.

          The law prohibits the donation of money, assets or any benefits to a political party exceeding baht 10 million per year.

          A petition was launched to the EC citing the politicians asset list, published on 26 May 2019, that Mr. Tanathorn and his spouse have total asset of baht 5,632,536,266 million and baht 683,303 liability. Among his asset, a total of baht 191.2 million is loans to the FFT. The contract was signed by Tanathorn, as lender, and FFT bookkeeper Mr. Nitipat Tampairote, as borrower, on behalf of the party leader.

          The first contract was made on 2 January 2019, total loan baht 161.2 million with 7.5% interest rates. The second one, on 11 April 2019, baht 30 million with 2% interest. Repayment will be made within one year after contract signed.

          On 15 May 2019, during his speech to the foreign news correspondents, on What is the Future for FFP, Tanathorn ensure the partys bright future due to he has lend baht 110 million for financial liquidity.

          Regarding to this issue, FFP speaker Ms. Panikar Wanij reaffirmed the political party can receive loans.

          On 29 November, Mr. Tanathorn resigned from the 2563 Fiscal Budget scrutiny panel. In regards to this, Ms. Panikar confirmed Mr. Tanathorn has no pressure but prefers to launch political campaigns with the public.

    BMA will start underground cable project

          On 28 November. Deputy PM Gen. Prawit Wongsuwan said the Pracharat Internet Project is progressing and Bangkok Metropolitan Authority (BMA) will reinstall overhead telecommunication cables underground.

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