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NBTC WORKS TO ENSURE PUBLIC HEARING

The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission has a backup plan in case the public hearing on May 28 for the auction of bandwidth on the 1,800-megahertz spectrum cannot be held at the Imperial Queens Park hotel as planned because of some accident.

Korkij Danchaivachit, deputy secretary-general of the NBTC, said yesterday that its telecom committee had considered sending mail directly to people as part of the hearing.

The NBTC has to devise a Plan B in response to the uncertain political situation in Thailand.

Settapong Malisuwan, chairman of the committee, confirmed that the plan to auction 1,800MHz licences in August and 900MHz licences in November were still on track and were not affected by this week's declaration of martial law.

INDUSTRY UNDER-SPENDS

The Industry Ministry's disbursement of its investment budget is below target, at only 11 per cent of what it should be at this stage in the fiscal year.

The projection for the whole year is about 60 per cent at best.

The prolonged political impasse was blamed as the major factor hindering procurement and hiring approvals. The ministry expects the economy to suffer greatly if those approvals cannot be achieved by next year.

As of April, disbursements amounted to 42.67 per cent of the total fiscal-year budget of Bt6.58 billion. Most were for routine expenditures. However, only 11.6 per cent of the Bt334.25-million investment budget was disbursed, Nattapol Nattasomboon, director-general of the Industrial Works Department, said yesterday.

State agencies of all ministries disbursed 54.0 per cent of the overall Bt1.84-trillion budget, of which routine expenditures were 57.25 per cent of their Bt1.44-trillion allocation. Disbursement of the Bt400-billion investment budget was 42.1 per cent.

As for the state agencies under the supervision of the Industry Ministry, the Office of the Cane and Sugar Board disbursed 75.8 per cent of its Bt735-million budget, with routine expenditures accounting for 76.0 per cent and capital expenditures for 62.3 per cent.

The Board of Investment disbursed 51.4 per cent of its Bt857.50-million budget, with routine expenditures at 51.3 per cent and investment expenditures at 54.6 per cent.

POWERBUY EXPO STARTS TOMORROW

PowerBuy Co, Thailand's largest electronics retailer, has joined forces with its allies, the owners of more than 200 world-renowned brands, to organise "PowerBuy Expo 2014".

It has invested more than Bt60 million to enable the exposition to reach its target customers and provide discounts of up to 40 per cent and special offers from 13 leading financial institutions.

The expo will cover more than 5,500 square metres at Hall 102 of the Bangkok International Trade and Exhibition Centre (Bitec) in Bang Na district of Bangkok from tomorrow (May 23) to June 1.

Turnover during the 10-day event is expected to exceed Bt400 million. State-of-the-art electrical appliances and information-technology products will be the highlights of the event.

The exposition is expected to attract more than 100,000 visitors.

PowerBuy expects total sales to increase by 10 per cent this year. Sales were flat in the first quarter but are expected to rebound this quarter, driven by various positive factors including the transition from analog to digital television, the upcoming broadcast of the World Cup soccer tournament, and the current hot weather, which helps boost air-conditioner sales.

NOK AIR BUYING 15 BOEINGS

Boeing and Nok Airlines has finalised an order for eight Next-Generation 737-800s and seven 737 MAX 8s. Nok Air also announced that it intended to convert one of the 737-800s into a 737 MAX at a later date.

"The 737 is the backbone of our fleet and has fuelled our growth over the past 10 years," said Patee Sarasin, CEO of Nok Air. "This order is a key part of our disciplined fleet strategy. These 737s ensure that Nok continues to operate the most reliable and fuel-efficient aircraft on the market today and in the future."

The order, first announced as a commitment at the Singapore Air Show in February, is valued at US$1.45 billion (Bt47 billion) at list prices and will establish Nok Air as the first airline in Thailand to operate the 737 MAX. While Nok Air currently operates a fleet of 15 Next-Generation 737s, this marks the airline's first

DHL AIRBORNE IN LA

DHL, a leading provider of international express services, is using helicopters to guarantee early-morning delivery in Los Angeles, regardless of traffic gridlock.

DHL Express has introduced the helicopter service into its Los Angeles operation as a way to guarantee 9am delivery service regardless of traffic bottlenecks. Initially used by specific financial-services customers, this service will expand to include additional customers in the Los Angeles area.


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