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Senators want debate on rice pledging

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Eighty-one senators have submitted a motion to Senate Speaker Nikhom Wairatpanich seeking a general debate without a vote on the government's rice pledging scheme under Section 161 of the constitution. 

Paithoon Nitiwan, an appointed senator and core member of the Group of 40, said the cabinet had approved a total budget of 405 billion baht for the rice-pledging scheme during the 2012-2013 harvest.

The last approval on Oct 4 allows the Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives (BAAC) to additionally seek loans of 105 billion baht to 120 billion baht from state and private financial institutions, guaranteed by the Finance Ministry.

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