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50 tonnes of dodgy durian seized and destroyed in China

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50 tonnes of dodgy durian seized and destroyed in China | Thaiger
PHOTO: Sanook.com

In a move that will attract thanks from 1000s of westerners, China has destroyed nearly 50 tonnes of illegally imported durian, valued around 5.5 million baht. The durians had been smuggled into China. Shiokou, a border town in Cao Bang Province in Vietnam, was where the dodgy durian was intercepted. The land port has been operating since 1792 and plays a major role in terms of trade between Vietnam and China. 16,266 tonnes of fruit have been imported into the China through the Shuikou land port since the start of 2020.

“Only durians officially imported from Thailand and Malaysia are allowed into the country.”

Chinese custom officials destroyed the fruit that had been smuggled into Nanning in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, in Southern China. The durians were seized by the Chinese Anti-smuggling Agency from the Shuikou Customs. Officials found 49.58 tonnes of smuggled durians and seized 9 delivery trucks. They arrested 5 suspects allegedly connected to the smuggling of the illegal durian.

Shuikou Customs report that the durian had to be destroyed because they had arrived from an “unknown source”. Chinese customs state that they only allows durians to be imported from Thailand and Malaysia.

Lua Huachueng from the Chinese Anti-smuggling Agency commented that many durian importers have attempted to bring in durian grown in other nations, other than from Thailand or Malaysia.

“Officials are now on strict watch for smuggled durian, mainly because consumer’s health can be affected as the source is unknown.”

The illegally imported durians were to be converted into organic fertiliser rather than simply being thrown away.

“The durians need to be destroyed because they are not subjected to necessary quarantine and formalities placed. The durians have no sanitary certificates required for food safety with no information on the health risks posed.

SOURCE: Xinhua | Sanook

PS. We recognise that there are plenty of you that actually enjoy eating durian.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Avatar

    J.C.

    Friday, September 4, 2020 at 1:04 pm

    By “destroyed” they mean handed over to well-connected distributor for 100% profits.

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Thailand

New Covid-19 wave could cause the Thai economy to lose 100 billion baht per month

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New Covid-19 wave could cause the Thai economy to lose 100 billion baht per month | Thaiger
Photo via National News Bureau of Thailand

With more than 18,000 Covid-19 cases in 22 days, the new wave of infections may have a dramatic impact on the Thai economy… possibly a 100 billion baht loss per month, according to the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce.

They say the outbreak is likely to primarily impact the service sector and the number of workers is expected to drop. With pay cuts and layoffs due to the outbreak, household debt could rise to 92% of GDP, according to the university president Thanavath Phonvichai. At the end of 2020, debt hit a record high of 89.3% of GDP.

Thanavath says gross domestic profit is expected to drop by 1.2% to 1.8%, but with economic stimulus measures, the economy could grow 1.2% to 1.6% this year.

“If there will be economic stimulus measures, the economy may grow 1.2% to 1.6% this year.”

The number of active cases making up a third of Thailand’s total reported cases since the start of the pandemic last year. The new wave of cases is expected to be under control within the next 2 to 3 months.

SOURCE: Reuters

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Economy

8% March growth for Thai exports in promising recovery

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8% March growth for Thai exports in promising recovery | Thaiger
PHOTO: Thailand's exports are recovering with 8% growth last month.

An 8% increase in exports is expected for March fueled by online officials connecting foreign buyers with Thai exporters. Commerce Minister Jurin Laksanawisit touted the success of this plan to have officials working as salesmen to promote Thai products worldwide, the results of which produced 14.4 billion baht in exports last year. The Trade Policy and Strategy Office will release official numbers tomorrow, but the Commerce Ministry and key business groups painted a positive picture, leading to the 8% estimate.

An upward path is predicted, contrasting with sales figures nearly a year ago, when Thai exports were down 22% in May and 23% in June as much of the world went into Covid-19 lockdown. The freefall ended, but figures still inched downward for the rest of 2020, until December when some growth was finally seen, with a 4.7% increase in exports. January saw a very minor increase of about a third of a per cent, but February brought the effects of Covid-19’s second wave, with a 2.59% fall due to a reduction of production and gold exports.

With tourisms usual 16-17% of the economy all but pancaked, exports are a major force keeping Thailand from descending into a deeper recession. This government-aided matchmaking between Thai exports and foreign buyers is forecasted to drive continued growth. The Commerce Minister said their original 2021 target of 16 billion baht in exporting sales will easily be exceeded. One potential cash cow is current talks between Thai businesses and multinational American behemoth Walmart Inc.

Another positive sign for Thailand’s economy is an increase in new businesses, with first-quarter numbers of 23,389 new businesses standing 20% higher than last year. March alone brought 8,841 new businesses with 19.4 billion baht of registered capital. The main sectors of business growth were building construction, real estate development, and restaurants.

SOURCE:Bangkok Post

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Thai hotels consider temporary shutdown amid low tourist demand

Maya Taylor

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Thai hotels consider temporary shutdown amid low tourist demand | Thaiger
PHOTO: Russell Davies / Flickr

The president of the Thai Hotels Association says many properties are considering shutting down for the low season as a result of the Covid-19 resurgence. Marisa Sukosol Nunbhakdi says smaller hotels that don’t necessarily have the resources of the large chain properties are struggling with cash flow and crippled by low tourist demand. Many are considering shutting up shop between April and October or until demand resumes.

In a Bangkok Post report, the THA chief says April’s occupancy rates are expected to plummet to single digits, as happened in January during the second wave of the virus. She adds that the level of business in the last 2 weeks of the month will determine whether or not many will close. There are now just 400,000 working in the hotel industry, a huge drop compared to just a few years ago.

Marisa says just how bad everything gets, including the number of people laid off, will depend on how quickly the government can control the virus. She says vaccines are the key to reviving the decimated tourism sector, thereby boosting the economy and increasing tourist confidence.

“The government has to speed up vaccines for people employed in tourism, especially hotel staff, and those working in hospitals serving non-critical or asymptomatic patients, alternative state and state quarantines.”

Last month, the THA conducted a survey of 128 hotels which showed that most had still not experienced any financial recovery, particularly in the south of the country. At least 50% have not even achieved 10% of their pre-Covid revenue. Up to 40% of hotels have had to make staff redundant, while others continue to implement policies such as leave-without-pay (77%), mandatory holiday leave (76%), pay cuts (71%), changes to working schedules, (69%), reduced hours (56%), as well as invoking section 75 of the Labour Protection Act to pay 75% of a worker’s salary (20%).

A tiny minority (6%) of 5-star hotels in the southern provinces of Phang Nga and Surat Thani experienced improved occupancy and were able to hire additonal staff. However, the vast majority of properties saw their liquidity in March drop by 20% from February and many can only afford to continue operating for another 3 months. The THA boss is calling on the government to provide a monthly co-payment scheme or a debt holiday, as well as more stimulus packages to boost tourist demand.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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