1. EC: Election likely on Feb 24. The general election will likely be held on Feb 24 next year, according to the roadmap set by the Election Commission (EC). Natt Laosisavakul, deputy secretary general of the EC, presented in Pattaya the draft plan on the senator and the MP elections on Saturday. (Bangkok Post, 16/08/18)
  2. Public debt in fiscal 2019 for infrastructure to be B100bn. Public debt for big-ticket infrastructure projects in the next fiscal year will be 100 billion baht, 20-30 billion baht lower than previously expected, due to a delay in certain projects, says a Finance Ministry source. (Bangkok Post, 17/08/18)
  3. Industries’ sentiment index at 5-year peak for July. The Thai Industries Sentiment Index (TISI) hit its highest point in 62 months in July, driven by local purchasing power and exports, The Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) said on Monday. FTI chairman Supant Mongkolsuthree said the TISI survey for July stood at 93.2 points, up from 91.7 in June. (Bangkok Post, 20/08/18)
  4. July car sales jump 25.7%YoY: FTI. Domestic car sales in July rose 25.7%YoY to 81,946 units, after a 25.9% increase in June, the Federation of Thai Industries said on Monday. Sales were lifted by economic growth, launch of new models and higher farm prices. Auto exports in July rose 0.15%YoY, after June’s 2.36% increase. Thailand is a regional vehicle production and export base for the world’s top automobile manufacturers. (Reuters, 20/08/18)
  5. MoF reports tax revenue in 10MFY18. Miss Kulya Tantitemit, inspector general of the Finance Ministry, reported collections in 10MFY18 (Oct 2017 – July 2018) of Bt2.03trn, 3.4% or Bt67.3bn higher than estimated and growth of 6.3%YoY. Key areas for the beat to estimates was tax revenue from the petroleum tax, automobile tax and tobacco tax. (IQ Biz, 21/08/18)
  6. Thai trade with FTA partners rises 14%. Exports to Japan soar, Peru the only decline. Thailand’s trade with free-trade agreement (FTA) partners rose by 14.2% year-on-year in the first half of the year. Auramon Supthaweethum, directorgeneral of the Trade Negotiations Department, said the trade value between Thailand and 17 trading partners under the 12 effective FTAs amounted to US$148.2 billion, with exports contributing $73.79 billion, up 13.3% year-on-year, with imports valued at $74.41 billion, up 15.2%. The top five FTA partners that Thailand exported to for the period were Asean, China, Japan, Australia and India. (Bangkok Post, 22/08/18)
  7. Farm income up in July. Farmers’ income rose by 6.38%YoY in July as production increased overall by 7.37%, but prices fell 0.93%, according to the Office of Agricultural Economics. OAE secretary-general Vinaroj Supsongsuk said on Thursday that production of rice, natural rubber, cassava, pineapples, oil palm nuts, meat chicken and white shrimps increased. (Bangkok Post, 23/08/18)
  8. Turkey’s Erdogan says to challenge ‘games’ on the economy. A day after two major ratings agencies downgraded Turkey closer to junk status amid a currency crisis, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said he would challenge those playing “games” on the economy. Both Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s ratings agencies cut Turkey’s sovereign credit ratings deeper into “junk” territory late on Friday. (Reuters, 18/08/18)
  9. Malaysia to shelve China-backed projects worth US$22bn. Malaysia will shelve three China-backed projects worth a total $22 billion until the debt-laden Southeast Asian nation can afford to pay for them, Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said Tuesday during a visit to Beijing. The projects include a railway connecting Malaysia’s east coast to southern Thailand and Kuala Lumpur, and two gas pipelines. (AFP, 21/08/18)
  10. US enforces tariffs on another US$16bn of Chinese goods. The United States on Thursday imposed steep import tariffs on another US$16 billion of Chinese goods over what Washington has called rampant theft of American technology, even as trade negotiators were in talks to avert further confrontation. The latest action completes the first round of $50 billion in products that President Donald Trump targeted, after $34 billion in goods were hit with punitive duties on July 6. (AFP, 23/08/18)

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