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Phuket Business: British Airways – 79 years of service to the Kingdom

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Phuket Business: British Airways – 79 years of service to the Kingdom | The Thaiger

PHUKET: After 79 years of service to Thailand, British Airways (BA) says it still sees the Kingdom as an important market because more executives, especially from small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), will fly out to ink business deals.

The airline will use its strong network to connect local businessmen not only to its home base in London, but also to other parts of the world, especially the US, said Sriram Narayan, BA manager for Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam.

His company is part of the International Airlines Group (IAG), which also operates Iberia and BMI airlines. IAG is one of the world’s largest airline groups with 398 aircraft flying to 200 destinations and carrying more than 50 million passengers each year.

It is the third largest group in Europe and the sixth largest in the world in terms of revenue.

The company operates the only daily Bangkok-London flight. Narayan declined to reveal the cabin factor, but said it is doing “well”. The firm claims to have advantages over rivals in pricing, onboard service and food quality, but most importantly the flight is non-stop, which makes it easier to connect to other parts of the world. And students can get discounted fares.

Airline representatives say they are looking forward to the Asean Economic Community (AEC) in 2015, which should stimulate regional traffic. The airline is working with Bangkok Airways via code-sharing to help its London passengers connect to domestic and regional destinations.

BA will also look for an “opportunity” to launch their own direct flight from London to the Thai region if the right time comes.

Worldwide, it operates 755 flights per day, with 152 destinations and carries 32 million passengers per year. Asia is a growing market for the company, which is launching a new route to Seoul from London.

Even though Southeast Asia offers more opportunity, BA says it has kept a balance for all markets to minimize its business risk at a time of economic uncertainty worldwide.

The firm is trying to strengthen its brand globally, including in Thailand, under the motto, “To Fly. To Serve”.

The airline says it has committed to spending more than 250 million baht on customer products and services over the next five years.

— Bamrung Amnatcharoenrit

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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Governments & old media versus social media – who will win? | VIDEO

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Governments & old media versus social media – who will win? | VIDEO | The Thaiger

We look at the recent changes made by the Australian and Indian governments to except control over the world’s biggest social media platforms. India has issued strict new rules for Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms just weeks after the Indian government attempted to pressure Twitter to take down social media accounts it deemed, well, anti social. There is now an open battle between the rise of social media platforms and the governments and ‘old’ media that have been able to maintain a certain level of control over the ‘message’ for the last century. Who will win?

The rules require any social media company to create three roles within India… a “compliance officer” who ensures they follow local laws; a “grievance officer” who addresses complaints from Indian social media users; and a “contact person” who can actually be contacted by lawyers and other aggrieved Indian parties… 24/7.

The democratisation of the news model, with social media as its catalyst, will continue to baffle traditional media and governments who used to enjoy a level of control over what stories get told. The battles of Google and Facebook, with the governments of India and Australia will be followed in plenty of other countries as well.

At the root of all discussions will be the difference between what governments THINK social media is all about and the reality about how quickly the media landscape has changed. You’ll get to read about it first, on a social media platform… probably on the screen you’re watching this news story right now.

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The social media giants in battle with ‘old’ media and world governments | VIDEO

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The social media giants in battle with ‘old’ media and world governments | VIDEO | The Thaiger

“The rules signal greater willingness by countries around the world to rein in big tech firms such as Google, Facebook and Twitter that the governments fear have become too powerful with little accountability.”

India has issued strict new rules for Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms just weeks after the Indian government attempted to pressure Twitter to take down social media accounts it deemed, well, anti social.

The rules require any social media company to create three roles within India… a “compliance officer” who ensures they follow local laws; a “grievance officer” who addresses complaints from Indian social media users; and a “contact person” who can actually be contacted by lawyers and other aggrieved Indian parties… 24/7.

The companies are also being made to publish a compliance report each month with details about how many complaints they’ve received and the action they took.

They’ll also be required to remove ‘some’ types of content including “full or partial nudity,” any “sexual act” or “impersonations including morphed images”

The democratisation of the news model, with social media as its catalyst, will continue to baffle traditional media and governments who used to enjoy a level of control over what stories get told.

The battles of Google and Facebook, with the governments of India and Australia will be followed in plenty of other countries as well.

At the root of all discussions will be the difference between what governments THINK social media is all about and the reality about how quickly the media landscape has changed. You’ll get to read about it first, on a social media platform… probably on the screen you’re watching this news story right now.

Keep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.

Never miss out on future posts by following The Thaiger.

Continue Reading

Business

Turbulence ahead for Thailand’s aviation industry | VIDEO

The Thaiger

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Turbulence ahead for Thailand’s aviation industry | VIDEO | The Thaiger

When the airlines, in particular, were asking the government to put their hands in their pockets for some relief funding in August last year, it was genuinely thought that international tourists would be coming back for the high season in December and January. At the very least local tourists and expats would head back to the skies over the traditional holiday break. And surely the Chinese would be back for Chinese New Year?

As we know now, none of that happened. A resurge in cases started just south of Bangkok on December 20 last year, just before Christmas, kicking off another round of restrictions, pretty much killing off any possibility of a high season ‘bump’ for the tourist industry. Airlines slashed flights from their schedule, and hotels, which had dusted off their reception desks for the surge of tourists, shut their doors again.

Domestically, the hotel business saw 6 million room nights in the government’s latest stimulus campaign fully redeemed. But the air ticket quota of 2 million seats still has over 1.3 million seats unused. Local tourists mostly skipped flights and opted for destinations within driving distance of their homes.

As for international tourism… well that still seems months or years away, even now.

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