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Thursday, February 14, 2008

Thai FM denies rumor about former premier Thaksin's immediate return

BANGKOK, Feb. 14 (Xinhua) -- Thailand's Foreign Minister Noppadon Pattama on Thursday denied rumors that ousted premier Thaksin Shinawatra is scheduled to return to Thailand on Valentine's Day.

"From what I know, he will not return today," Noppadon, former chief legal adviser of Thaksin and his family said in a radio program.

However, he did not elaborate Thaksin's exact schedule for return to Thailand.

Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Surapong Suebwonglee also denied the rumor. The former government spokesman of Thaksin government said the deposed prime minister has not contacted him about the return.

Earlier, local newspapers reported Thaksin, who was ousted during a military coup in 2006, is currently in Singapore and will take a morning flight to Suvarnabhumi Airport of Bangkok on Thursday.

Saprang quits AoT board, others follow

Saprang: `Under no pressure to quit'

All but one member of the Airports of Thailand (AoT) board tendered their resignations yesterday, paving the way for the Samak government to appoint a new executive board. Fourteen members led by board chairman Gen Saprang Kalayanamitr requested that their resignation take effect today.

Only AoT president Chana U-sathaporn remains as a board member and a general assembly of shareholders will be held on March 14 to select a new board.

Gen Saprang insisted he had not been under pressure to step down as board chairman, saying his resignation was good timing and that it did not affect the agency.

''I do not regret anything I did in my capacity as board chairman over the past year,'' he said.

He defended the slump in revenues of AoT, saying it was not a failure of management. He said the decrease was partly due to the conflict with King Power Plc, the operator of duty-free shops and commercial areas at Suvarnabhumi airport. ''My decisions have not been based on any negative attitudes towards the company. I do not have the power to tamper [with the AoT's and the firm's operations],'' he said.

Chirmsak Pinthong, AoT board member and spokesman, yesterday warned the next board against making changes to the Saprang board's decisions.

He said the outgoing board has tried to correct the wrongs and has agreed to a proposal to impose noise charges upon the airlines using Suvarnabhumi airport.

Mr Chirmsak asked the new board to study the proposal which is aimed at encouraging airlines to switch to low noise-emitting aircraft and setting up a fund to compensate residents affected by aircraft noise.

He said there are two options for noise charges imposed on airlines _ the charges will depend on the amount of aircraft noise or on the period of take-off and landing.

Vice ACM Chana said the board has approved the noise charges in principle, and that AoT's management has yet to work out the details for submission to the new board.

Meanwhile, Transport Minister Santi Prompat said the ministry will speed up construction of a third runway to accommodate traffic following repairs of the eastern runway.

A 2,000-metre length of the eastern runway is being closed for repairs for 50 days as surface damage over a long distance has been found.

The damage stretches for 600 metres out of the total 4,000 metres of the eastern runway.

Mr Santi added that Finance Minister Surapong Suebwonglee has volunteered to work to shore up the image of Suvarnabhumi airport.

''We will use every means we can including marketing to erase the bad image. The airport has a lot of advantages,'' said Mr Santi.

The third runway project worth 7.1 billion baht is part of the second phase of Suvarnabhumi airport's development which covers five years under a budget of 48.12 billion baht.

Spa experience @ swimming pool at Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel

The Vous Spa at Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel now offers a new experience “Spa at Swimming Pool”, the outdoor pool located on the 2nd floor of west wing in magnificent view of skyline with its form surrounded by a lush tropical garden style and state-of-the-art pool bar service which make feeling like being at the resort.

The Vous Spa is a luxurious originally urban spa from France, provides professional standard services along with the DeclĂ©or product. Vous Spa is located on the second floor of west wing, offering a wide huge of traditional Thai massages for your preference include body massage, body treatment relaxing with aroma therapy. There are 7 private rooms with individually a double bed, Jacuzzi and shower also in room. Open service daily 7.30am–midnight.

‘Spa at Swimming Pool’ is a new service offering the most popular types of Thai massage therapy including body massage, foot massage and back & shoulder massage. Our therapist will make you feel aligns the energies of the body using pressure on specific points, includes compressions and stretches. It is also reduces stress and improves flexibility and range of motion.

  • Thai massage 60 minutes is Baht 1,200++
  • Thai foot massage 60 minutes is Baht 1,000++
  • Back & shoulder massage 30 minutes is Baht 800++

Bring yourself relax, restore & revitalize with massage therapy at swimming pool. Time available from 2.30pm to 6.00pm.

Friday, February 1, 2008

King Power back in business

Chiang Rai _ The Civil Court has ordered Airports of Thailand (AoT) to let King Power International Group resume business at Suvarnabhumi pending a decision on their dispute.

AoT earlier cancelled its contracts with King Power, the operator of duty-free shops and commercial areas at the airport, for alleged irregularities in the contracting process. The firm filed a counter lawsuit with the Civil Court and sought damages of 68 billion baht.

The court's injunction, issued on Wednesday and released yesterday, said the firm must be allowed to operate until a ruling is made in their dispute.

It also prohibited AoT and its executives from giving press interviews that might affect King Power's operations.

AoT has ordered King Power's eviction from duty-free outlets and commercial shopping space at the airport.

The contracts ran into problems early last year after the AoT board accused King Power of breaching the public-private joint-venture law.

It said King Power had concealed information to keep the official investment in each of its two commercial developments at the airport under one billion baht to avoid proper scrutiny.

The court also instructed King Power to pay about three billion baht to the AoT, which has not received any revenue from the company since the airport opened.

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