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It's not just visas

Re: "Cabinet approves visa changes to woo wealthy foreigners", (Online, Jan 18). I read with interest the article on the front page today regarding cabinet approval for the new long-term residence (LTR) visas for wealthy foreigners.

As a long term (32 years) foreign resident of the kingdom, who has also invested a not unsubstantial amount of money here, I applaud the government for its initiative -- especially since Thailand was recently rated the best place for retirement in Asia.

It may be of interest to any foreigner who is intending to apply for these new visas if further clarification was provided as regards:

a) There is a 10-year "cap" on the renewability of the LTR Visa.

Where is the logic in this?

How will wealthy foreigner workers or retirees deal with a cap, after 10 years? Does it mean these people can only live in Thailand for 10 years?

Why limit the length of the validity for wealthy people?

What happens after 10 years?

b) Will the legal system be reviewed so as to protect these "wealthy'' foreigners?

I for one and as the plaintiff, have been fighting legal cases for eight years in Thai courts against unscrupulous individuals who stole my assets.

To date there is no end in sight to these cases, and the defendants remain free to this day. Whilst enjoying their freedom those defendants have attempted on many occasions to have me deported by Thai Immigration, claiming I am the one causing them harm.

The cost of these cases is significant, millions of dollars, and yet it is apparent that there is no mechanism in the law which protects foreign complainants while they await justice. These deficiencies need to be addressed if more wealthy foreigners are indeed to be enticed to this wonderful country.

Visas are only one part of the process of living in Thailand as a foreigner. Please address the entirety of the process to prevent problems in the future.

JOHN LAW


Insufficient comfort

Re: "Be self-sufficient", (PostBag, Jan 18).

On the same day as the Bangkok Post reports the cost of papaya has risen from "100-120 baht per 10 kg to 250-280" and pork prices have "soared from 150 baht per kilogramme to 210/240 baht/kg" -- it seems odd that Darius Hober would choose to regurgitate the old mantra citing the virtues of "self- sufficiency economy". This may not be much comfort for those currently struggling for survival. It is interesting how such sound advice always seems to be directed at the impoverished classes whilst emanating from the upper windows of the so-called "elites".

YANNAWA DAVID


Putin wants more

Re: "Will Russia opt to play the 'Cuban card?", (Opinion, Jan 19).

Gwynne Dyer forgets that a man with a Kalashnikov doesn't need a flintlock muzzle-loading rifle.

During the 1962 Cuban missile crisis, Russia had no hypersonic missiles and nuclear sea drones and then even in Siberia my relatives saw soldiers carrying gas masks.

Now we have them, with our president issuing an ultimatum demanding Nato's withdrawal. Before him Stalin did it to the Nazis in 1943 in Stalingrad and in 1945 in Berlin.

Mr Putin announced our development of the Doomsday devices four years ago and now we must have mass-produced them to be able to launch them into the seas and the skies around the planet.

That's the name of the game. And it's rather amusing that the West thinks we want Ukraine only.

MERGEN MONGUSH


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