Thailand

Teachers threatening to stop repaying loans from the Government Savings Bank are risking bankruptcy and disqualification from government service, deputy justice permanent secretary Tawatchai Thaikyo warned on Tuesday. He was responding to the announcement by leaders of a network of professional teachers' organisations meeting in Maha Sarakham on Saturday that their 450,000 members would stop paying off debts to the state-owned bank next month in protest at increasing interest rates, the Bangkok Post reported. "Be prepared to become bankrupt if you owe more than 1 million baht...
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Thailand's Central Bankruptcy Court has approved a business plan for Sahaviriya Steel Industries Pcl (SSI), Thailand's biggest steel maker, to restructure debts worth 69.2 billion baht ($1.94 billion), Reuters reported. The court cleared SSI to implement the restructuring plan after some 91.90 percent of its creditors voted in favour in September, SSI said in a statement on Thursday. Progress on restructuring SSI's debt will be positive for the Thai banking sector as bank creditors will be able to reduce reserves related to SSI loans.
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Thai hotel group Minor International has made its biggest ever acquisition with a 294 million euro ($320 million) deal to buy 14 Tivoli chain hotels that belonged to the collapsed Espirito Santo Group, Reuters reported. The purchase of the properties in Portuagl and Brazil is part of Minor's aggressive eoverseas expansion plan. The group said last year that it wanted to have 190 hotels by 2019. The Tivoli deal lifts its tally to 145.
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Thailand’s newly-minted central bank governor said Monday that the country’s economy is entering a difficult transition, and that he stands ready to tailor the bank’s policies to support more growth while strictly managing price pressures, the Wall Street Journal reported today.
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Britain's second-biggest steelmaker SSI UK said on Monday it plans to mothball its Redcar plant in northeast England and axe about 1,700 jobs, calling its future into question and deepening a crisis in the British steel sector. The loss-making company, a unit of Thailand's biggest steelmaker Sahaviriya Steel Industries (SSI), has been hit by a slump in steel prices this year ST-CRU-IDX, which it expects will continue in the short term. The Redcar plant, SSI's only British operation, employs 2,000 people directly, meaning it plans to axe nearly its entire workforce.
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SSI Reaches Debt-Restructuring Pact

Sahaviriya Steel Industries has reached an agreement with its creditors to enter debt-restructuring for the massive Bt50 billion it owes them and has pulled the plug on its upstream plant in Britain as part of its strategy to keep its core business in Thailand afloat, The Nation reported. "The huge loss of the UK base is crimping the cash flows of SSI in Thailand, so we had to keep the hot-rolled coil steel business in Thailand going by opening negotiations with lenders," Win Viriyaprapaikit, president of SSI, said yesterday.
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A nasty consumer debt hangover awaits Thailand, as recently highlighted by EM Squared. Over the past decade, Thais have binged on auto financing and unsecured loans, to the extent that nominal household debt doubled between 2008 and 2014, and debt has reached 80 per cent of GDP*. Consumption growth has stalled, and neither consumers nor the country’s banks can stomach much more. Yet for many in Thailand, the situation is even more precarious than official figures suggest.
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Multinational companies drawn to Southeast Asia by hopes of a long consumption boom are witnessing a reversal of fortunes in its three biggest economies as shoppers lose their mojo, the Financial Times reported. Household debt, sluggish wage rises and political uncertainties are dragging on spending growth in Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia.
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Thailand's military-led government has approved a restructuring plan for Thai Airways International PCL in a bid to restore profitability to the national carrier's operations, a senior government official said on Monday, Reuters reported. State-controlled Thai Airways is one of the major state companies to undergo reform after the military seized power from an elected government in a May coup. The restructuring includes measures to cut operating costs, boost revenue and sell some non-core assets, said Kulit Sombatsiri, director general of the State Enterprise Policy Office.
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Din Ruenmeesang spends about half his monthly income making minimum payments on his seven credit cards and multiple bank loans. That isn’t stopping the 33-year-old from borrowing again to buy a new car next year. Spenders like Din are making it hard for Thailand’s central bank to cut interest rates even as Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy struggles with weakening growth. Thai household debt has more than tripled in a decade to a record high 83.5 percent of gross domestic product, and lower borrowing costs may exacerbate that.
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