Quick News

Economy February 17, 2014 00:00

By The Nation

PTT sells 45% stake in Vietnam LPG to PetroVietnam


PTT’s board has approved the sale of its 45-per-cent stake in Vietnam-based LPG Co Ltd to PetroVietnam Southern Gas Joint Stock Company for about US$3.85 million (Bt125 million).

PTT is responsible for the relevant taxes and duties arising from the sale of LPG, which has continued operating.

The value of the stake was based on arm’s length negotiations between PTT and PetroVietnam, and PTT has received a reasonable amount.

On Wednesday, PTT and PetroVietnam executed a capital transfer agreement.

The sale of PTT’s entire stake in LPG is in line with its restructuring policy, and the sale does not affect the international expansion of its oil business and the PTT Group.

Thaicom profit soars |to Bt1.1 billion

Thaicom made a consolidated net profit of Bt1.1 billion in 2013, an increase of 548 per cent over the previous year.

The satellite company’s standalone profit rose to Bt802 million.

Chief executive Suphajee Suthumpun said 2013 was the second year in a row in which Thaicom posted a net operating profit.

The company’s core satellite operations contributed 88 per cent to its total revenues of Bt7.89 billion.

Near-term areas of growth include this year’s scheduled launch of Thaicom 7 and potential sales growth in Africa now that Thaicom 6 has been launched to serve that market.

14 foreign firms suspected of FBA breaches

The Business Development Department said 14 companies oper?ating in Thailand were suspected of breaching the Foreign Business Act (FBA) during last fiscal year (September 2012-October 2013), while so far this fiscal another 61 firms have been marked for further investigation.

Court proceedings are under way for the 14 companies fingered last fiscal year, nine of them in Chon Buri, three in Surat Thani, and two in Prachuap Khiri Khan.

Firms suspected of breaching the FBA are investigated by officials of the department to clarify whether they have allowed foreigners to hold majority shares for businesses that are reserved for Thais.

“The department will deepen its investigation into all 61 companies by questioning their directors and examining documentation,” said Pongpun Gearaviriyapun, director-general of the department. “If any of the businesses have committed offences, their cases will be forwarded to state agencies for prosecution.”

Of those 61 companies, 29 operate in Bangkok, and 32 are in other provinces such as Chiang Mai, Phuket, and Chon Buri.

Most businesses that are found likely to breach the act are involved with property development, land and tourism, in which Thais must hold majority shares under the FBA Annex III.

To ensure that foreign businesses are operated under the law, the department investigates the structure of shareholders, proportion of shares held by Thais and foreigners, certification documents issued by the department, account balances, and total sales revenues.

Under Article 36, companies found guilty of breaching the FBA are subject to three years in jail and/or fines of Bt100,000 to Bt1 million. A company that is found in breach of the act must adjust its shareholdings, or could be instructed to close down its operation. If a company it fails to do so, it will be subject to fines of Bt10,000-Bt50,000 a day.