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Fri, October 07, 2005

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SUBWAY EXPANSION: French technology to cut costs

Firm’s design could shave 20 per cent. The Transport Ministry will modify the design of parts of the mass transit network to accommodate the pioneering viaduct technology of France-based Systra, which promises to lower the construction cost of the Purple and Red lines by 20 per cent and speed up construction work. The modifications are likely to delay the bidding for the two lines from late this year probably to February 2006, said Transport Minister Pongsak Ruktapongpisal.

SPECIAL: Australian firm’s gold gamble pans out

A crowd stands around a gas furnace in silence as a masked worker pours a hot glowing liquid into a metal bar mould. Some of the molten metal splashes outside of the mould and is caught by a sink. Here every drop counts. Then, the worker lifts the bar mould out of a water container and taps the metal mould with a long metal bar on a large table. The silver-bronze bar’s surface looks rough, like a sponge, but this 11-kilogram ore bar contains around three kilos of pure gold – the rest is silver ore.

NTC relaxes telecom import restrictions

The national telecommunications regulator yesterday relaxed its rules for imports of radio equipment used in telecoms networks.

Kingdom on track for ‘digital economy’

Thailand has set a goal of transforming itself into a “digital economy” by 2008, but it must first strengthen itself in three areas – broadband infrastructure, Web services and content and services – says the permanent secretary for the Information and Communications Technology Ministry.

Kantana to keep links with iTV regardless of equity decision

Local television producer Kantana Group Plc may not acquire a stake in iTV, but the company will maintain a strong business relationship with the station by supplying programming.

STREET WISE: Abhisit’s fame taken in vain

Democrat Party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva is undeniably handsome. The first time he emerged on the political scene as a candidate for the party, he immediately charmed voters with his good looks as well as strong academic background – both strikingly different traits from most politicians.

MARKET SURVEY: SET to end year on a high note

Securities houses forecast that economic woes will have minimal impact on stocks

Strength in numbers

Finansa Wealth Management will form an alliance with at least five other local asset-management companies to act as agents in selling mutual-fund unit trusts, said executive chairman Teera Phutrakul.

MONETARY POLICY: Central bank signals repo rate to rise

The Bank of Thailand (BOT) has sent a signal that the 14-day repurchase rate will rise by a total of at least 75 percentage points over the next nine months.

New senior exec at KGI, new strategy

KGI Securities (Thailand) recently introduced its new chief operating officer, William Fang, who said strategy would now be focused on research, marketing and new products in a bid to boost market share.

Thanong wants more to pay tax

Finance Minister Thanong Bidaya yesterday assigned the Revenue Department to consider providing tax incentives for private investment and encouraging more workers to enter the tax system.

FRIDAY BUG: Executive turns heads

Journalists have become used to seeing groups of cute young cheerleaders dance around to brighten up the scene as press conferences get under way.

DTAC stock sale expected to generate Bt2 billion

Firm still waiting for SET approval to list

Kingdom to remain net exporter of polymers

Thailand’s exports of major polymers are expected to reach 1.9 million tonnes in 2009, up from 1.6 million tonnes last year, recent research by the Petroleum Institute of Thailand (PTIT) indicates.

UK importer bullish about Thai shrimp following new GSP regime in Europe

Fusion Foods Co Ltd, a major UK importer of Thai chicken and shrimp, predicts that under the new generalised system of preferences (GSP), European Union shrimp imports will reach 110,000 tonnes this year, up from 90,000 tonnes in 2004.

COMPANY REPORTS

CH KARNCHANG forecast an operating profit of at least Bt500 million for this year, and expects to record additional gains of at least Bt50 a share from the sale of 2.95 million shares, or a 9.8-per-cent stake, in its wholly owned unit Thai Tap Water Ltd.

TT&T taps cellular allies to boost users

TT&T Plc has teamed up with Advanced Info Service Plc (AIS) and Loxley Plc to launch a heavy marketing campaign to increase its subscriber numbers.

Cold water poured on faucet sales

Siam Hansa Co Ltd is realigning its distribution channels after sales of European sanitary ware grew 15 per cent, short of its target of 20 per cent.

Minor Food to fatten up its franchise revenues

The Minor Food Group Plc expects to double its revenue - currently at Bt500 million annually - from franchisees of The Pizza Company and Swensen’s in the next two years.

Thaniya spends Bt700m upgrading

Thaniya Real Estate is in the midst of a Bt700-million renovation of its properties.

Airlines return to Phuket

The Pacific Asia Travel Association has welcomed the news that many international airlines will resume or increase direct services to Phuket by December.