What's new in business news: May 19, 2014 | Bangkok Post: learning

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What's new in business news: May 19, 2014

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Thai gold imports plunge, as 2G ends True may lose millions of customers & recession looms with GDP forecast cut to 1.5%. 

Thai economy appears to be in freefall, the same as this giant figure of Spiderman appears to be doing, hanging above shoppers at a shopping mall in Bangkok. Thailand may need a superhero if growth is to exceed 2.5% this year. (EPA photo)

GOLD 

Thai gold imports plunge

Bloomberg News

Gold shipments to Thailand are forecast to contract by as much as half this year, a sign the unprecedented Asian demand that helped stem last year’s rout in prices is weakening. Thailand’s purchases may fall to 150 to 200 metric tonnes because of falling prices and the country’s political crisis. Prices fell 78% in the first quarter from a year earlier and totalled 314 tonnes in 2013, valued at about US$13 billion (422.5 billion baht).

Consumption across Asia reached a record in 2013 even as some investors in the United States and Europe lost their faith in bullion as a store of value. Prices snapped a 12-year bull market, the longest in at least nine decades. Holdings in exchange-traded products backed by gold are still contracting and Goldman Sachs Group says prices will keep retreating.

Investors have a reduced appetite for gold as prices are expected to fall further this year, while returns are much lower than investing in equities Gold consumption in Thailand, the biggest user in Asia after China and India, expanded 73% to 140.1 tonnes last year. Imports were higher than local consumption in 2013 as some bullion was re-exported, including jewelry. World consumer demand rose 21% in 2013 as usage in China surged 32 %, an all-time high. Across all Asian countries, including India, China, Japan and Southeast Asia, consumption expanded 25%.

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MOBILE PHONES 

As 2G ends True may lose millions of customers

19/05/2014

True is bracing itself for the possible loss of several million customers because the country's third-largest mobile operator is unlikely to meet a deadline to move its 2G subscribers to other networks by September 15th. The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC), the regulator, insisted that signals for True 2G SIM cards on mobile networks will be cut off after Sept 15th, as the regulator plans to hold an auction to sell two licences for 4G mobile broadband services.

True still has 6 million customers using 2G service, down from 17 million last September. It would be difficult to migrate all 2G users to other networks by the deadline, based on the company's customer migration capacity of up to 300,000 customers per month. Migration cannot be done without customer consent as it violates customer rights. True's concession expired last September. The NBTC allowed the company to retain its customers for another year but they were not allowed to acquire new subscribers.

Last month, True asked the NBTC to use a faster method involving sending SMS to targeted customers requesting permission to switch their service from 2G to 3G/4G systems. But the regulator rejected the company's proposal.  TrueMove is facing accumulated losses of 3 billion baht due to the NBTC's regulation that it retains its existing 2G customers for another year after its mobile concession expires.

Read full story here 

ECONOMY 

Recession looms, GDP forecast cut to 1.5%

Reuters News agency

Thailand's economy shrank more than expected in the first quarter as exports remained weak and domestic activity was battered by months of political unrest — which could put the country into recession. There was a 2.1% contraction in January-March, compared with the previous three months, while the first quarter shrank 0.6% from a year earlier. The National Economic and Social Development Board (NESDB) chopped its 2014 GDP growth forecast to a range of 1.5% to 2.5% from 3% to 4%. The economy has seen the worst performance during the year since the end of 2011, when the economy shrank 8.9% due to devastating floods.

Thailand, the second biggest economy in Southeast Asia, is the only regional economy to be contracting. Malaysia reported annual growth of 6.1% in the first quarter while Indonesia, the largest economy, this month announced its slowest growth in years, but January-March's annual pace was still 5.21%. Given the lack of a functioning government and the worsening economy, there may be increased pressure on the central bank to cut its benchmark rate.

Consumer confidence in Thailand is at a 12-year low, tourists are staying away from Bangkok and government spending has been delayed.  The political turmoil is also hurting Thailand's big auto sector, which accounts for 11% of GDP and is the largest in Southeast Asia. Domestic car sales are falling and some 30,000 industry jobs have been lost his year. Thai Airways also reported a quarterly loss and tourism which accounts for about 10% of GDP has a low forecast for 2014 tourist arrivals at 26.3 million, the lowest in five years. More than 60% of Thai GDP comes from exports, and some analysts expect these to start to pick up on the back of a global recovery but the projection for export growth this year has been cut to 3.7%, down from an earlier 5-7% despite the fact that the unrest has had a minimal impact on shipments and most exporters are still confident about the export sector

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Vocabulary:

accumulate: to get more and more of something over a period of time - เก็บสะสม, สะสม, สั่งสมมานาน

acquire: to get; to obtain - ได้มาซึ่ง

activity: a thing that you do for interest or pleasure, or in order to achieve a particular aim - กิจกรรม

allow: to let somebody/something do something; to let something happen or be done - อนุญาต, ยอมรับ

analyst: a person whose job involves examining facts or materials in order to give an opinion on them - นักวิเคราะห์

announce: to tell people something officially, especially about a decision, plans, etc - ประกาศ, แจ้ง, แจ้งให้ทราบ

annual: happening every year - ทุกๆปีด, ประจำปี

appear: to seem - ดูเหมือนจะ, ดูเหมือนว่า

appetite: a strong desire for something - ความอยาก, ความปรารถนา

auction: a usually public sale of goods or property, where people make higher and higher bids (= offers of money) for each thing, until the thing is sold to the person who will pay most - การขายโดยการประมูล, การขายทอดตลาด

backed: supported - ให้การสนับสนุน

battered: badly damaged - ที่ถูกทำลายยับเยิน

benchmark: a standard that other things can be compared to, for example, to calculate prices - ตัวเปรียบเทียบ; การวัดเปรียบเทียบสมรรถนะเกณฑ์มาตรฐานหมายถึง การทดสอบเพื่อวัดความสามารถในการประมวลผล หรือการทำงานของ โปรแกรมใดโปรแกรมหนึ่ง หรืออุปกรณ์คอมพิวเตอร์ชนิดใดชนิดหนึ่ง โดยเทียบเคียงกับเกณฑ์มาตรฐาน

brace: to get ready for something unpleasant - เตรียมใจ

bull market: a long period during which the prices of stock shares and other financial assets are rising and many people are buying them -

bullion: gold or silver in the form of metal bars - ทองแท่ง, เงินแท่ง, แท่งเงินหรือทองจำนวนมาก

capacity: the amount of something that can be produced or done - ความสามารถในการ (ระบาย, ผลิต etc.)

central bank: the main government bank in a country that controls the supply of loans (credit) and the supply of money in the country and provides financial services to the government and other banks - ธนาคารแห่งชาติ

chop: to cut something into pieces with a sharp tool such as a knife - สับ, หั่นเป็นชิ้นๆ, ตัดเป็นชิ้น

concession: a right that is given to a person or group to do a particular activity - สัมปทาน

confidence: being certain of your abilities or of having trust in people, plans, or the future - ความมั่นใจ

confident: being certain of your abilities or of having trust in people, plans, or the future - มั่นใจ

consent: to give permission to do something - ยอมให้ทำ, อนุญาต

consumer: someone who buys and uses goods and services - ผู้บริโภค

consumption: the act of using energy, food or materials; the amount used - การบริโภคพลังงาน, การใช้หมดไป

contract: to get smaller - หดตัว

contraction: when something becomes smaller or shorter - การหดตัว

crisis: a situation that has reached and extremely difficult or dangerous point - ช่วงวิกฤต

cut off: to not communicate with someone any more; to refuse to communicate with someone - เลิกการติดต่อ

deadline: a time or day by which something must be done - เส้นตาย

decades: periods of ten years - เป็นสิบๆปี

demand: the need and desire of people to buy goods - อุปสงค์

devastating: damaging badly or destroying - ทำลายล้าง

domestic: inside the country being talked about - ภายในประเทศ

due to: because of - เนื่องจาก

equity: stock shares - หุ้นทุน

exceed: to be more than something; to go beyond a limit - เกินกว่าที่กำหนด

expand: to make or become larger - ขยาย เพิ่ม

expire: to come to an end or stop being in use - หมดอายุ

export: something sold and transported to another country - สินค้าออก

faith: trust in somebody's ability or knowledge; trust that somebody/something will do what has been promised - ศรัทธา

figure: a shape, especially of a person - รูปร่าง, รูปทรง

forecast: a statement about what will happen in the future based on information available now - การพยากรณ์, การคาดการณ์

forecast: to say what you think will happen in the future based on information that you have now - ทำนาย, ทาย, พยากรณ์

freefall: the movement of an object or a person falling through the air without engine power or a parachute - การเคลื่อนไหวของวัตถุหรือบุคคลล้มผ่านอากาศโดยไม่มีเครื่องยนต์หรือร่มชูชีพ

function: to perform the action or the job of the thing or person mentioned - ทำหน้าที่

GDP: gross domestic product, the total value of all goods and services produced in a country in a year, except for income received from money invested in other countries ผลิตภัณฑ์มวลรวมภายในประเทศ -

global: throughout the world - ทั่วโลก

growth: economic growth, an increase in economic activity - การเติบโต

holdings: the stock shares and part ownership in a company that someone owns or "holds" -

impact: an effect or influence - ผลกระทบ

import: to buy or bring in products from another country - นำเข้า

insist: to keep saying very firmly that something is true - ยืนกราน ยืนยัน

invest: to spend money on something in order to make it better or more successful - ลงทุน

investor: a person or organization that invests money, i.e., uses money with the aim of making a profit from it, for example by buying property or buying shares in a company - นักลงทุน

licence: an official document that gives someone permission to do or use something - ใบอนุญาต

local: in the country being discussed -

method: a particular way of doing something - วิธีการ,วิธีดำเนินการ

migrate: moving from one place to another or from an old technology to a new technology - อพยพ

migration: moving from one place to another or from an old technology to a new technology - การอพยพ

minimal: very small in amount - น้อยที่สุด, น้อยมาก

mobile (technology): of devices, especially telecommunication devices, that can easily be moved around, e.g., mobile phones, tablets, notebook computers - อุปกรณ์ซึ่งเคลื่อนที่ได้ง่าย

National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC): the independent government agency which oversees and regulates the Thai telecoms and broadcasting industry - สำนักงานคณะกรรมการกิจการกระจายเสียง กิจการโทรทัศน์และกิจการโทรคมนาคมแห่งชาติ

National Economic and Social Development Board (NESDB): NESDB (National Economic and Social Development Board or "Sa-pa-pat") - Thai government planning agency for economic development, creates five year plans with an agenda of: 1. Alleviation of Poverty and Income Distribution problems, 2. Enhancing Thailand’s Competitiveness, 3. Promoting Social Capital Development, 4. Promoting Sustainable Development (Source: Wikipedia) - สำนักงานคณะกรรมการพัฒนาการเศรษฐกิจและสังคมแห่งชาติ

network: a large system of connected parts, organisations, people, etc. - เครือข่าย

operator: a person or company that runs a business - ผู้ดำเนินกิจการทางธุรกิจ, ผู้ประกอบธุรกิจ

pace: the speed at which something happens or is done - อัตรา

performance: how well someone does some task or activity; how well they achieve their goals - การปฏิบัติงาน, การทำให้บรรลุผลสำเร็จ

permission: allowing someone to do something - การอนุญาต,การอนุมัติ,การยินยอม

pressure: to try to make someone do something by forcing, threatening, or persuading them in a determined way - กดดัน

previous: happening or existing before the event or object that you are talking about - แต่ก่อน, เมื่อก่อน

projection: a calculation or guess about the future based on information that you have - การคาดคะเน

proposal: a plan or suggestion for a group to consider - ข้อเสนอ

purchase: to buy something - ซื้อ

quarter: three months of the year on the official calendar of the government or companies -

range: to have an upper and a lower limit in amount, number, etc - ผันแปรภายในขอบเขตหนึ่ง

rate: an amount of money that is paid or charged - ราคา, อัตรา

re-: to do again - อีก

recession: a period when trade and industry are not successful and there is a lot of unemployment - ภาวะเศรษฐกิจถดถอย

record: the best or most ever achieved - สถิติ

recovery: the process of becoming normal and healthy again - การฟื้นตัว, การฟื้นฟู

reduce: to make something smaller or less in amount, size, importance etc - ลดลง

regional: of or relating to a region - เกี่ยวกับภูมิภาค

regulation: an official rule that controls the way that things are done - กฎระเบียบ

regulator: an official who makes certain that the companies who operate a system work effectively and fairly - ผู้มีอำนาจควบคุม

reject: to not accept something - ปฏิเสธ ไม่ยอมรับ

retain: to keep - รักษา

retain: to keep, continue to have, or to store something - เก็บไว้, สงวนไว้

retreat: to move back or away - ถอยกลับ

return: the amount of profit that you get from something; the amount of money you earn - เงินรายได้

right: a moral or legal claim to have or get something or to behave in a particular - สิทธิ

rout: a complete defeat of an opponent in a battle, competition, or election - การทำให้พ่ายแพ้ราบคาบ, การทำให้พ่ายแพ้กระเซอะกระเซิง

sector: a part of a country’s economic or business activity - ภาค (เศรษฐกิจ)

shipment: a load of goods that are sent from one place to another - ปริมาณสินค้าที่ขนส่งในครั้งหนึ่ง ๆ

shrink: to become smaller, or to make something smaller - หดตัว, เล็กลง

sign: a piece of evidence that something is happening or that something exists - ร่องรอย

signal: a mobile phone, TV or radio transmission -

stem: to stop something from increasing or spreading - หยุดยั้ง,ยับยั้ง,สกัด

store: to put and keep things in a special place for use in the future - เก็บ

subscriber: someone who pays money to an organization in order to receive a product, use a service regularly or support the organisation - ผู้ใช้บริการ

surge: a sudden increase in something - การเพิ่มขึ้นอย่างรวดเร็ว

switch: to change - เปลี่ยน

target: a particular number or amount that you want to achieve - เป้าหมาย

trade: the amount of goods or services that a business buys and sells - การค้าขาย

unprecedented: never having happened before - ที่ไม่เคยเกิดขึ้นมาก่อน

unrest: angry or violent behaviour by people who are protesting or fighting against something - สถานการณ์ที่ไม่สงบ

usage: how much someone uses a service, measured in minutes, for example -

value: how much something is worth in money or other goods for which it can be exchanged - มูลค่า

violate: to do something that is against a law, rule or agreement - ฝ่าฝืน, ละเมิด

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