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Saha-Union units to shed loss-maker

Saha-Union's two wholly owned subsidiaries in China will sell their shares in Danyang-Union Co-generation, a power company generating 24 megawatts of electricity and 100 tonnes per hour of steam, after it was unable to show a profit.

The two subsidiaries are Union Energy (China) and Saha-Union Investment (China), which own 49.5 per cent and 5.5 per cent of Danyang-Union respectively. Shares will be sold to a third party that has no connections to the parent.

In a statement, Saha-Union said Danyang-Union had suffered continuous losses for the past two or three years. The price of coal, the main raw material, has been rising steadily, while the selling prices of electricity cannot be increased proportionately, an unfavourable trend that will likely continue.

The company said the combined losses of both subsidiaries amounted to about Bt300 million.

Oil Fund will pay

The Energy Ministry will pay out Bt500 million to Bt600 million in compensation to filling stations, in accordance with the government's stimulus package.

Permanent secretary Pornchai Rujiprapha yesterday said the ministry had rushed to complete its stock checks within three days, in order to facilitate the compensation, which will come from the Oil Fund within 90 days.

Border trade 'normal'

The Commerce Ministry yesterday said the controversy between Thailand and Cambodia over the disputed Preah Vihear Temple had not affected border trade.

Deputy Minister Wiroon Techapaiboon said only in Si Sa Ket's Kantharalak district had trading been sluggish but that at border checkpoints elsewhere with Cambodia activity was normal.

Wiroon said Cambodia still needed Thai goods to serve local demand. He believes the dispute will not be protracted, nor will two-way trade be affected.

High expectations

The Commerce Ministry expects its "Made in Thailand" cheap goods and export fair to generate total sales of more than Bt5 billion.

Department of Export Promotion director-general Rachane Potjanasuntorn yesterday predicted "Made in Thailand" would attract more than 1 million shoppers and foreign visitors. The 10-day fair will run from August 8-17 at Muang Thong Thani.

Gold sales glitter

Fluctuating oil prices have prompted consumers to turn towards purchasing more gold, with the commodity increasing in value.

Thai Gold Traders Association president Jitti Tangsithpakdi yesterday predicted the domestic gold price would soon hit Bt16,000 per baht weight (15.16 grams). Yesterday gold was Bt15,200 per baht.

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