Integrity Legal

Archive for November, 2013

12th November 2013

It was recently announced that the President of the Tourism Council of Thailand Piyaman Tejapaibul met with Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra at Government House on 12 November 2013 in order to discuss matters pertaining to tourism in the Kingdom of Thailand. This recent meeting was held as Bangkok and other areas of Thailand have seen demonstrations which seem to be causing concern for Thai officials. Although many in Thailand feel that the demonstrations should be monitored, they are unlikely to adversely impact the tourism sector so long as the demonstrations remain confined to specific relatively small geographic areas. Over 26 million tourists are expected to travel to Thailand in 2013 and are also expected to bring in revenue well over 1.5 trillion Thai baht to the local economy. This being the case, it  is little wonder that officials in the Thai government as well as the industries which thrive upon tourism related activities are concerned about the possible negative consequences stemming from recent political demonstrations (regardless of affiliation).

The Thai government appears committed to a policy non-violence towards demonstrators as, so long as demonstration remain peaceful, they are not prohibited by law. Meanwhile it currently appears that these demonstrations are confined to only a few areas of the City of Bangkok, namely: Phan Fa Bridge, Makkhawan Bridge on Ratchadamnoen Avenue, and Democracy Monument. At present, increased security measures have been undertaken in these locations as a precautionary measure while traffic police in the city work in earnest to ensure that these activities do not interfere with normal traffic flow in Bangkok. That being stated, some roads and facilities near demonstration sites may be temporarily closed due to demonstrations occurring close by so travelers are advised to research their traffic route prior to traveling in certain parts of the city so as to forestall unnecessary delays.

As of the time of this writing, nearly 20 countries have issued travel warnings to their citizens urging them to try to avoid areas where demonstrations may be taking place. In the recent past, demonstrations have led to significant disruptions in Bangkok as parts of the city were, at one time, virtually impenetrable to ingress and egress. However, under the current circumstances it would appear that such a situation will be unlikely to come about in the near future.

Tourism is a substantial aspect of the Thai economy and it is rather impressive to see government officials as well as civil servants making efforts to see to it that tourism is not affected by recent political activities. Moreover, it would appear that demonstrators are making a conscious effort to keep demonstrations peaceful and confine their activities to certain areas.

more Comments: 04

5th November 2013

In recent postings throughout the internet, speculation regarding the future of Southeast Asian economics abound. Meanwhile, further analysis of the Thai economy in particular is rife. In a recent article on Forbes’ official website evidence has been cited which would appear to point to the possibility that Thailand may experience an economic bubble burst akin to the crash of 1997. Various Thai government officials as well as Thai businesspersons were quoted as saying that certain aspects of the Thai economy are troubling. Notably, inflows of foreign capital specifically targeting the Thai property market as well as signs that Thai people are engaged in what could be described as conspicuous consumption are leading some experts to believe that Thailand could be headed for a new economic downturn.

Concurrently, the article went on to note that Thailand, ever susceptible to negative economic consequences arising from nations which maintain significant trade relationships with the Kingdom, may see problems in export sectors resulting from decreased demand in both China and the other nations which comprise the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Should there be an economic problem in one of these countries then there could be a sort of negative ripple effect in the export sector in Thailand.

The points made in the article are compelling and certainly there may be cause for concern that the Thai economy may be placed in a difficult position in the future, especially if Thailand’s main export markets experience an economic downturn. However, the situation may not be as dire as some are predicting. Instead, this blogger would argue that Thailand’s economy may be simply in something of a state of flux due to changes in the ASEAN region and China. The dynamics of global economics are changing. American monetary policy along with economic problems in Europe have caused many to look toward Asia as a beacon of possible future growth.

In a recent article on the official website of Bloomberg it was noted that there appears to be a “boom” of sorts occurring in the Eastern province of Rayong and the region of Northeast Thailand known as Isan. As automobile manufacturing has increased in Rayong, so too has the purchasing power of residents of that province. Meanwhile, Isan is experiencing an upsurge economically as a result of increased domestic income and also concomitant demand for consumer goods from the local population. All of this news comes closely upon the heels of announcements that Thailand, Laos, and China will one day be connected via a high speed rail system. In fact, China has recently noted their commitment to that project and Thai officials have asked China to assist in the design of a rail system between Bangkok and Udon Thani (a city of 400,000 which sits close to the border and capital of Laos). There is an argument that should this rail system go into place the resulting economic boon to Thailand, particularly Northeast Thailand, could be tremendous as there could be a substantial increase in trade and tourism from China via this rail link. Moreover, Thailand could see itself becoming the entrepot for trade between South China and the rest of the ASEAN jurisdictions.

Presently, it is difficult to say whether Thailand will continue a trend of uninterrupted prosperity. However, there is strong evidence to suggest that increased economic integration with ASEAN as well as new, less logistically difficult, trade opportunities with China could usher in an era of prosperity and counter some of the negative factors currently worrying experts analyzing the current state of the Thai economy.

more Comments: 04

The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely on advertisement. Before you decide, ask us to send you free written information about our qualifications and experience. The information presented on this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.