Thai south Muslims mourn death of rebel 'spiritual leader'

Sapae-ing established a leading Islamic school and became a folkloric figure for many Malay-Muslims in Thailand's culturally distinct far south despite being in self-exile since 2004. Mosques have been packed across the south for special prayers since his death was confirmed. In the Malay-speaking south, for example, Thai language and script has been enforced for decades, fuelling anger and resentment. An end to the fighting remains distant despite peace contacts. The Thai junta remain coy on ceding powers and do not believe the rebel groups they have command-and-control over the militant foot soliders.

January 18, 2017 06:12 UTC

Many happy returns for birthday girl Kerber

As an impromptu rendition of "Happy Birthday" rang out, Kerber, who will next play Czech Kristyna Pliskova, said she was still getting to grips with being world number one. Kerber joined Venus Williams and Svetlana Kuznetsova in round three as the Grand Slam-winning veterans enjoyed smooth progress in sunny conditions on day three. France's Tsonga, who is seeded 12th and was runner-up to Novak Djokovic in 2008, beat Serbia's Dusan Lajovic 6-2, 6-2, 6-3 to go through. In the women's draw, 36-year-old Williams continued her smooth progress when she beat qualifier Stefanie Voegele 6-3, 6-2 to set up a meeting with China's Duan Yingying. Zero, like zero," Williams said of Duan.

January 18, 2017 06:02 UTC

Fishing boat sunk by storm off Chumphon, 7 missing | Bangkok Post: news

CHUMPHON -- Thung Tako and Lang Suan districts have been hit by floods following a heavy rainstorm that also sank a fishing boat in the sea off Chumphon, leaving seven crew missing. According to local media, from about 10pm on Tuesday a flash flood inundated Highway 41 between kilometre markers 47 and 48 in front of Thung Tako police station in Thung Tako district. In Lang Suan district, water flowed into Lang Suan Hospital, which was heavily flooded on Jan 5-7, to flood an old out-patient building. Narong Ponla-iad, the Chumphon governor, instructed Lang Suan district chief Kittipop Roddon to quickly pump water out of the hospital. About 8.28am on Wednesday, a car skidded off a curve and plunged into the Lang Suan River while it was heading from tambon Pak Nam Lang Suan to Lang Suan market.

January 18, 2017 05:59 UTC

SET rises 2.22 to 1,569.06 at midday | Bangkok Post: business

The Stock Exchange of Thailand main index went up 2.22 points or 0.14% to close at 1,569.06 points at the end of trading session this morning. The trade value was 21 billion baht, with 4.53 billion shares traded. The SET50 index ended at 977.43 points, up 0.61 points or 0.06%, with trade value of 10.37 billion baht. The MAI index went up 3.52 points, or 0.55%, to close at 640.99 points, with total transaction value of 2.12 billion baht.

January 18, 2017 05:50 UTC

China tells local meteorological bureaus to stop smog alerts

China's Meteorological Administration notified local bureaus Tuesday to "immediately stop issuing smog alerts", according to a photo of a notice posted on China's Twitter-like social media platform Weibo. Instead, the local departments can issue alerts for "fog" when visibility is less than 10 km, according to the notice. "A joint alerting mechanism will be formulated to consult how to and who should issue alerts for smog," the representative said. One single department will now be responsible for issuing smog alerts, The Paper reported. The Chinese government has a colour-coded system of smog alerts, topping out at red when severe pollution is likely to last more than 72 hours.

January 18, 2017 05:48 UTC

KBank net profit rises 1.77% in 2016

Predee Daochai, president of the KBank, said it had set aside a high allowance for loan loss provisions to be prepared for uncertainties due to the economic slowdown. The bank and its subsidiaries set aside an allowance of Bt33.75 billion, up by 27.96 per cent from Bt26.37 billion in the year before. KBank, the country’s fourth-largest bank, reported gross non-performing loans of 3.32 per cent in 2016, up from 2.70 per cent in 2015. Lending growth supported net interest income, for which the bank recorded growth of 5.5 per cent to Bt89.67 billion. Non-interest income increased slightly, by 1.96 per cent, to Bt63.72 billion mainly on a significant drop in net income from insurance premiums.

January 18, 2017 05:44 UTC

Audiobooks see boom in digital, multitasking age

Some 35,574 audiobook titles were released in the United States in 2015, according to the Audio Publishers Association, an eight-fold increase over five years. According to the Author Earnings website, Amazon largely dominates the market -- even more so than for the print book industry -- with around 119,000 audiobooks sold per day in January 2016. A favorite in the carIn the United States, audiobooks have long been serious business -- simply because Americans on average spend so much time in their cars. When audiobooks became available in digital format, people started using them during other activities -- when out shopping or jogging, performing household tasks or crafting. Most celebrities who recently published autobiographical works in the United States also provided recordings of the volumes, including Bruce Springsteen, Carrie Fisher and Bernie Sanders.

January 18, 2017 05:39 UTC

HP Enterprise buys US software startup for $650 mn

Founded in 2009, the Massachusetts-based Simplivity sells "hyperconverged" systems that combine computing, storage and networking. HPE, based in Palo Alto, California, was the result of the November 2015 breakup of computing giant Hewlett-Packard. The group was split between its enterprise unit, HPE, and the personal computer and printer business HP Inc. that became a household name but faced increasingly fierce competition. Whitman has dismantled some of the company as the world increasingly turns to mobile devices and cloud-based computing. The price paid by HPE would indicate that the company had left the unicorn herd.

January 18, 2017 05:39 UTC

Village security booth attacked in Yala | Bangkok Post: news

YALA - Militants opened fire at a village security booth in Krong Pinang district early on Wednesday but there were no casualties, police said. District police chief Pol Col Rakchart Ruangcharoen said the attack occurred about 4.30am. Two militants riding on a motorcycle opened fire at the security booth manned by five members of a self-defence team of Talo Hana village in tambon Purong. The attack left many bullet holes on the booth, but none of the village security team were hurt. Police were investigating.

January 18, 2017 05:10 UTC

Four pupils hurt in school bus-truck crash | Bangkok Post: news

Four of the 20 kindergarten and primary school students on the bus were hurt. (Photo by Nujaree Raekrun)NAKHON SI THAMMARAT - Four students were hurt when a school bus they were travelling in rammed into the rear of a truck in Na Bon district on Wednesday morning. Bus driver Sathit Rattanaburi, 51, told police that his bus was on the way to the school. He tried to overtake it, but the truck driver applied the brakes at close range, causing his bus to ram into it. Truck driver Narong Dakaew, 55, said he noticed the school bus was behind so he tried to keep left to let it overtake his vehicle, but the bus rear-ended his truck.

January 18, 2017 05:09 UTC

Demand for professional property management thriving | Bangkok Post: business

As the real estate market in Thailand evolves, demand for professional property management services in the country has been rising rapidly, according to international property services firm JLL. Besides a greater number of property developments, the increased awareness of property owners and investors regarding the necessity to secure professional management of their properties is a major factor that has driven this demand. Due to the same reason, a higher level of property management offering more sophisticated technical and engineering support is needed. Due to these reasons, JLL foresaw more property owners outsource property management functions to independent service providers. As the country's real estate market has become more mature, the firm also expects the growth of demand for professional property management to be more apparent.

January 18, 2017 05:03 UTC

Privy councillor Chanchai Likitjitta dies at 70 | Bangkok Post: news

Chanchai Likitjitta, a privy councillor and former Supreme Court president, died at Chulalongkorn Hospital at 8.30am Wednesday morning at the age of 70, according to media reports. Privy councillor Chanchai Likitjitta dies on Tuesday. (Bangkok Post file photo)Born on April 25, 1946, Chanchai finished his secondary education from Wat Songtham School. He first served in the judicial service as an assistant judge and later became a judge at many courts. Chanchai became the 36th president of the Supreme Court in 2005 before his retirement in 2006.

January 18, 2017 04:22 UTC

TechStar aids IT job hunt with Line app | Bangkok Post: tech

TechStar Thailand, a Bangkok-based IT job search website, has introduced a Line app to serve social media users. "Having the Line channel enables us to reach job seekers among Line's 33 million users," said Chuladej Machimanond, general manager of TechStar Thailand, an online marketplace for skilled workers. Job seekers can add the @TechStarTH account, then type keywords such as "Java" (the programming language) in Line chat. Line provides an alternative channel for job seekers aside from the website and mobile site. TechStar is targeting job seekers aged 25-35 years for 1,200 positions posted by 400 organisations.

January 18, 2017 04:08 UTC

Delegation visits Myanmar | Bangkok Post: news

Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak is scheduled to lead a Thai delegation to Myanmar on Feb 2-3, seeking to expand bilateral trade and investment as well as border trade. Isara Vongkusolkit, chairman of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, said the delegation will include 40 representatives who will meet Myanmar businesspeople to discuss possible partnership on investment and financial and capital market development. The Thai delegation is also due to meet Myanmar's leader Aung San Suu Kyi. Thailand is also in dire need of proactive approaches to expand trade with neighbouring nations and border trade, said Mr Isara. Adul Chotinisakorn, deputy director-general of the Foreign Trade Department, said recently border trade prospects remained promising as the economies of those four countries are expected to continue growing by 6-7% a year.

January 18, 2017 04:08 UTC

Thai AirAsia adds Mandalay flight | Bangkok Post: news

Thai AirAsia (TAA) is to introduce a second daily flight from Bangkok to Mandalay to meet stronger demand. The additional service will commence on March 17, expanding the low-cost carrier's (LCC) footprint in the emerging travel market. The additional Mandalay flight kicks off TAA's 2017 intention to strengthen its network in the CLMV subregion: Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam. TAA's new route, FD 246, leaves Bangkok for Mandalay at 3.35pm and arrives at 4.55pm, with the return flight FD 247 departing Mandalay at 5.30pm and touching down in Bangkok at 7.50pm. Pursuing its tradition in launching new services, TAA is offering a promotional fare starting at 1,290 baht one-way between now and Jan 29 for travel from March 17 to Oct 28.

January 18, 2017 03:58 UTC

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