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Thailand News - Our News Blog

We Deliver News Directly from Thailand

We are based in Thailand and want to offer a neutral news blog that describes current events in the country. We will be careful not to focus on personal opinions but instead provide factual news directly from Thailand, together with comments. The goal is to be fast, simple and accurate.

dateiconFebruary 21, 2013

Breaking News

Swedish Suspected of Buying 11-year-old

BANGKOK - A Swedish 65-year old male, currently known only as "Jorgen", is suspected of sexually abusing an 11 year old girl in Bangkok. There are also suspicions that he also abused other children and to have filmed these crimes. Possibly, these movies have spread to other countries.

The man managed to leave the country before the Thai police could arrest him, but they have now contacted their colleagues in Sweden in order to get him identified. Under Swedish law, the man can also be prosecuted in Sweden, if the suspicions prove to be justified.

Two women, a 46-year-old Thai and a 32-year-old Cambodian has been arrested on suspicion of having sold the girl to the Swedish man. They claim they met him at 'Soi Cowboy', one of the three most (in)famous red light district areas for foreigners in Bangkok.

Buying or selling sex with minors (under the age of 18) is strictly forbidden in Thailand. Newsstop

dateiconFebruary 19, 2013

DiCaprio Wants Ban on Ivory Trade

Hollywood Actor Leonardo DiCaprio has stated that he wishes that all ivory trade should be banned and he is currently taking part in a campaign initiated by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). He now hopes that the Thai government and Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra will introduce a total ban on the ivory trade in Thailand. Newsstop

Bangkok Sinking Faster than Feared

BANGKOK - Satellite images indicate that parts of Bangkok's outskirts seem to sink even faster than previously feared. This is partly due to rising sea levels and partly caused by erosion. Newsstop

dateiconFebruary 18, 2013

Our Hotel Tip - Comfortable in Phangan

KOH PHANGAN - Green Papaya Resort is a comfortable mid-range resort next to Haad Salad Beach, one of the most beautiful beaches on the island. I lived here myself a few months ago and was really pleased with the rooms, pool and reception. The breakfast is a little better than average. Perfectly acceptable for a three star resort.

The rooms are spacious and a little "luxury". The Deluxe rooms have a bath and a "outdoor shower", but there are also large pool villas with private small pools. The Green Papaya Resort is located next to the beach and I can personally recommend this place. Newsstop

  Read or book Green Papaya Resort

dateiconFebruary 7, 2013

Alprazolam will be Banned in Thailand

The drug Alprazolam, which is sold under names including Xanax and Xanor, will be prohibited in pharmacies in Thailand from June 17. The reason is a number of cases where the drug has been used as a "date rape drug". Doctors in government hospitals will still have the right to prescribe the drug. Newsstop

2,2 Trillion to Improve Infrastructure

BANGKOK - Thailand's Transport Minister Chatchat Sitthipan today announced that the government intends to invest 12,000,000,000 baht to improve the infrastructure in the country. Leading politicians are also discussing the possibility of upgrading the rail system, including high-speed trains. Newsstop

dateiconFebruary 6, 2013

Honda to Invest 17 Billion in Thailand

Honda plans to build a new car plant in the Prachinburi province, 120 kilometers east of Bangkok. It is estimated that the cost of the plant will be about 17 billion baht. It is expected to produce up to 120,000 cars annually and to initially employ 1,200 people. Newsstop

Five Killed in a Bus Crash i Chumphon

CHUMPHON - This early morning, five passengers were killed and sixteen injured in a bus accident in Chumphon, 380 kilometers south of Bangkok. One of the deceased is a 23-year-old Frenchwoman. Newsstop

dateiconFebruary 4, 2013

Hail Storm in Northern Thailand

CHIANG MAI - The districts of Wiang Haeng, Mae On and San Kamphaeng, in Chiang Mai province, were hit by hail storms yesterday. These damaged flower gardens, rooftops and cars.

This is a rare weather phenomenon in these latitudes. Many of the hailstones were as big as five baht-coins. The cost of the material damage is estimated at several hundred million baht. Fortunately, no people were injured. Newsstop

dateiconFebruary 1, 2013

12 Arrested for Working Illegally

PHUKET - Twelve non-Thai nationals were arrested yesterday in Phuket, suspected of working illegally in the Kingdom. Most of these lacked Thai work permits. You'll need a work permit to be able to work legally in Thailand.

The people arrested are from Russia, Finland, Great Britain, Australia, Indonesia and Burma / Myanmar. The arrests took place in restaurants, travel agencies and massage parlors. Some Thais oppose foreign labor, because they think it might result in higher unemployment among Thais. Newsstop

Economy Growing more than Expected

BANGKOK - The Thai gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 5.3% in 2012, which is slightly more than the five percent that was predicted. Newsstop

dateiconJanuary 24, 2013

Missing Girl Found - In Prison

RANONG - A young Swiss woman was reported missing last week and her worried mother posted a notification of a missing person on the popular travel forum 'Travelfish'. The 22-year-old is an exchange student at the National University of Singapore and was on a holiday in Thailand. One day her frequent contact with her family stopped and after a week her mother made the post on the forum. She then found out the truth - Her daughter is under arrest.

The young woman reportedly refused to pay her three-day "overstay" in Thailand and in an unguarded moment she is said to have stolen a camera in the immigration office in Ranong! She was arrested on suspicion of theft and to have overstayed her visa. Yesterday her mother arrived to Ranong and was asked to pay a bail of 130,000 baht, for her daughter to be temporarily released. Newsstop

Border Police Officers as Teachers?

BANGKOK - Thai Deputy Prime Minister, Chalerm Yubamrung, wants to recruit border police officers to become teachers in the southernmost provinces of the country. This is because of the recent violent attacks against teachers and other officials. Last Wednesday a 51-year-old teacher was shot to death in Narathiwat province. Chalerm Yubamrung would also like to expand the existing number of border policemen in the region. Newsstop

dateiconJanuary 22, 2013

Vanessa-Mae in the Olympics?

The world-famous 34-year-old violinist Vanessa-Mae would like to represent Thailand in the giant slalom (and perhaps also in slalom) at the Winter Olympics next year.

Vanessa's father is Thai and she has Thai citizenship. In addition to playing violin, she has been doing downhill skiing since she was five years old. If she would qualify and allowed into the team, she will becomes the second person in history to represent Thailand in an Olympic Winter Games. Reportedly, she has taken a sabbatical from music to concentrate on practicing skiing in Switzerland.

Below you can see an example of Vanessa's "violin techno-acoustic fusion": Newsstop


Record Sales for the Auto Industry

Car sales in Thailand flourished in 2012. 1,436,335 vehicles were sold, representing a massive increase of over 80 percent! Only Toyota sold over half a million cars in Thailand last year.

The increase in sales is partly due to generous tax rebates (up to 100,000 baht) provided by the Government for the first-time car buyers. Newsstop

dateiconJanuary 21, 2013

Number Plate for 11 Million Baht

A license plate with number "ญญ 9999" is available for sale in Thailand for a 11 million baht (approximately US$ 370.000).

These letters and numbers are considered auspicious in Thailand. Especially number nine. Newsstop

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dateiconJanuary 13, 2013

13-Year Old "Sold" for 2000 Baht

LOP BURI - Earlier this week, a woman invited a 34-year-old man to her home in Lop Buri for drinking. That evening, the man tried to hug the woman's 13-year old sleeping daughter, who started screaming and the man fled from the house.

But the next day he returned to the same house, where he raped the young girl. She told her parents about the horrific incident, but rather than to protect their daughter, they offered the offender to "buy her" for marriage. The price was set at 2,000 baht! Other villagers then contacted the police who later arrested the adults involved and took them in for questioning. The girl was taken to a center for sexually abused children.

Our thoughts: A downright horrible story. I think no single news event has affected me more than this one, since I started with this news blog. One can not help but wonder what is wrong with these cowardly people. Newsstop

dateiconJanuary 12, 2013

Children's Day in Thailand Today

Today, Children's Day is celebrated in Thailand. Various organisations, politicians, the army and companies has organized various activities in most major cities in the country.

We can also mention that the requirement for kids to have super short hairstyles was abolished in Thai schools, a few days ago. Newsstop

Children on a bike

dateiconJanuary 11, 2013

Charged with Murder - Went Home?

A Swedish man in his 40s stabbed a New Zealander to death in Pattaya in August 2012. According to reports in the media and on blogs, he is now back in Sweden, even though he was immediately arrested after the attack and put in custody in Pattaya.

In October he could leave Thailand "due to family reasons" after paying an unknown amount of bail. He did not appeared at the trial in November.

The victim's mother has reacted strongly over the Thai authorities' actions. Newsstop

dateiconJanuary 9, 2013

Criticism of New Minimum Wage

The minimum wage in Thailand was raised to 300 baht at January 1. But now, many companies say they can not afford to pay their employees. Some have even been forced to lay off staff.

One example is the fishing industry in Chonburi. About twenty boats fishing boats had to stay ashore, as the boat owners claim it's unprofitable to fish and pay the applicable minimum wage. Five-six crew members are required per boat.

Companies within the textile industry, food industry, construction and agribusiness are among those affected by this reform. Newsstop

dateiconJanuary 8, 2013

Weaken Thai Exports in 2013?

BANGKOK - The Center for International Trade Studies (CITS) predicts that the Thai exports will expand only marginally in 2013. One of the reasons is thought to be the minimum wages that have been raised to 300 baht per day, will increase the production costs in the country. Also higher prices on agricultural products and a stronger baht, are considered to be other contributing causes.

It is predicted that exports of rice and clothing might suffer this year. Newsstop

dateiconJanuary 4, 2013

Guns to be Banned in Phangan?

SURAT THANI - Stephen Ashton died of his injuries from a stray bullet on Koh Phangan during the New Year celebration and now the authorities are discussing an arms ban on the island.

The bullet that killed the 23-year-old Englishman came from a home-made ​​gun. According to the arrested Thai shooter, he used it to defend himself against a Thai gang of youths, who attacked him. It was never his intention to hit the Englishman.

Thai authorities held meetings yesterday in Surat Thani because of the tragic incident. They discussed the possibility to ban on firearms on Koh Phangan. Newsstop

dateiconJanuary 3, 2013

Prosecuted for False Accusation

PHUKET - A Danish 19-year-old citizen has admitted that he reported a crime that never occurred, to receive insurance money in Denmark. Yesterday he walked into the police station in Kamala and claimed that a Thai gang had robbed him during the New Year's night. He stated that he lost his Omega watch, an iPhone 5 and a gold chain.

But the police became suspicious about his story. The tide was so high at that time, that he couldn't have been on the beach at the time. In addition, a surveillance camera recorded that he still wore his watch when he arrived at the hotel in the early morning.

The young Dane has admitted that the alleged assault did not occur. Newsstop

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A Few Words about me

My name is Jens and I was born in the early seventies in Södertälje, Sweden. I traveled for the first time to Thailand in 1989-1990 and already then started to have strong (positive) feelings for the country and it's people. During subsequent trips, it was mainly beach-life and Muay Thai training on the agenda but as time has gone by a strong interest regarding Thailand's history, community and culture has emerged within me. In early 2004, I moved here permanently.

My wife Rawadee is indirectly involved in the writing and contributes with knowledge, facts and inspiration. We try to alternate daily news from the country with our own reflections. The news and blog are illustrated with some photos, both my own and others. I hope you'll find the reading somewhat useful and I am of course open to your comments, suggestions and criticisms.

We are full-time geeks. Jens is working with web development, search engine optimization, graphic design and photography. Rawadee had a computer shop before, but is now also working with web development.

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