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INDUSTRIAL SENTIMENT INDEX RISES IN JULY

The Thai Industries Sentiment Index (TISI) rose for the third consecutive month in July, attributed to a clearer political situation and gradual business recovery.

July's figure rose to 89.7 from 88.4 in the previous month on improvements of overall purchase orders, production and performance, said Supan Mongkolsuthee, chairman for the Federation of Thai Industries. The index is based on a survey conducted on 1,147 companies in 42 industries.

Supan said the improvements were particularly strong in small and medium-sized enterprises.

He said many business operators were active in border trade, and had reduced production costs. However, export-oriented operators were concerned over the European Union's upcoming cancellation of the Generalised System of Preferences and this had prompted them to make themselves more competitive.

CRITERIA FOR

VOUCHER SCHEME

The board of the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) yesterday approved the eligibility criteria for set-top box companies that want to take part in the voucher giveaway to help people buy the boxes so they can receive digital TV signals.

Participating companies must have registered capital of at least Bt5 million and must place a deposit equivalent to 5 per cent of Bt690 (the value of each voucher) times the number of boxes they intend to sell.

Meanwhile, NBTC member Supinya Klangnarong urged Bangkok Entertainment Co (BEC), which operates the analog Channel 3, to simulcast it on the company's high-definition digital channel from September 1, so Channel 3 could reach audiences via the cable and satellite platforms.

If BEC fails to do so, the cable and satellite operators will not be able to carry Channel 3 after that date, as they will be restricted to digital channels, according to the NBTC "must carry" rule.



CITY OFFICE RENTS UP

As Bangkok was hit hard by anti-government protests, the office market saw a slowdown in demand in the first half of the year, after robust leasing activity in 2013. However, rents continued to rise to a new high, according to Jones Lang LaSalle, a professional-services firm specialising in real estate.

"Political tensions that Thailand experienced between and May 2014 dampened economic and business sentiments over the first half of 2014," said Suphin Mechuchep, managing director of JLL Thailand.

"However, fundamentals in most of the property sectors in Bangkok have remained strong. "

VMPC PLANS 2015 PROJECTS

Property firm VMPC Co plans to develop two residential projects worth Bt8.2 billion next year to boost its revenue growth to double digits, chief executive officer Prinya Tieanworn said.

The first project is a townhouse on Rama II worth Bt2.2 billion and the other is a 1,000-room serviced apartment/hotel complex worth Bt6 billion.

The company is targeting total sales of Bt400 million this year.

CORRECTION

A story on page 1B yesterday incorrectly reported that AP (Thailand) targeted total presales of Bt12 billion and revenue of Bt12 billion this year. In fact, AP (Thailand) targets total presales of Bt21 billion and revenue of Bt21 billion.


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