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Seminar : 31 October 2013 Investment in the Lao PDR and Myanmar: Obstacles, Opportunities and Challenges

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With the recent break-up between a major US Cola Company and its franchise bottler and sole distributor in Thailand, Company A, the US beverage giant has to maintain its distribution and availability in the Thai market. The cola giant was confronted by this dilemma since its franchise agreement with Company A ended in November 2012 when Company A declared it was not going to sign a new agreement. → Read more

The demand for up-to-date and diversified infrastructure and public services are increasing which mainly comprise of large projects that require high-value investments. The public sector, imposed with the duty to provide adequate infrastructure and public services for the needs of its people, is thus required to establish efficient infrastructure at a minimum of expense. Hence, the plan to allow private sectors to jointly operate in State undertakings for providing infrastructure and public services has been established. → Read more

At present, many businesspersons, especially foreigners, are not aware of or do not understand whether or not they need to allow their employees to have days off on the traditional public holidays such as Visakhabucha Day, Asarnhabucha Day, Chulalongkorn Memorial Day, Chakri Day, etc. as announced by the government, or whether or not they are able to postpone such public holidays and allow their employees to have days off on other days rather than such public holidays. This can cause many problems in the management of a business as employers may be faced with legal proceedings brought upon by their employees and be penalized by relevant laws. Therefore, in order to bring an understanding to the issue of traditional public holidays, details of the same are laid out below. → Read more

On 5 February 2013, the Cabinet approved the resolution regarding the proposal of the Non-Life Insurance Bill and the Life Insurance Bill for amendment of the Non-Life Insurance Act B.E. 2535 (1992) and Life Insurance Act B.E. 2535 (1992) (the “Bills”) to the House of Representatives for deliberation as an urgent matter. On 21 March 2013, the House of Representatives passed the resolution to accept the principle of the Bills, which are currently under consideration of the Ad-hoc Committee. → Read more

Today creative work, the product of its creator’s perseverance which is protected by the copyright law, is created or displayed not only on tangible media like paper, fabric or ceramic but also on intangible media, widely known as digital media, like CD, DVD or the Internet. As Thailand’s current copyright law, which provides protection for the copyright owner’s rights as well as imposes penalty for infringement, is not sufficient to protect those creative work on digital media, infringements on copyrighted work have skyrocketed. → Read more

The ASEAN Economic Community and the European Union’s Experience – The Purpose, the Inception, the Difference, and the Issue

In November 2002, leaders of the Association of the South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) agreed on the proposed creation of an ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 2020. This was followed by the adoption of the AEC Blueprint in 2007 along with the affirmed and strong commitment by leaders to accelerate such economic integration by 2015. It is easy or perhaps deceiving for one to compare the AEC with the European Union (EU) with much excitement and enthusiasm for that the name ‘Economic Community’ itself is suggestive to those of the EU’s experience. However, one must realize the difference between the EU and the AEC as confirmed by the Governor of the Bank of Thailand, Dr. Prasarn Trairatvorakul’s address at Sasin Update-Reunion 2011: “The AEC is not, and has no intention of transforming ASEAN into a European style union. We should refrain from perpetuating any grand, Euro-style visions. ASEAN lacks supranational policy-making bodies like the European Central Bank or the European Commission which are required to make such an entity function properly.” → Read more

Intellectual properties, particularly copyright, patent and trademark, serve as profoundly valuable assets for a business, and different sets of laws have been established to protect the exclusive rights of each holder of intellectual property. Some intellectual properties require notification or registration in order to obtain protection. Formerly, protection of rights only applied exclusively in the countries where the properties were created. Systems of international protection over intellectual properties have now been adopted by means of multilateral agreements. → Read more

Mediation has accumulatively been chosen over other available means of dispute settlements. Previous mediation systems before the Regulations on Mediation by Public Prosecutors, B.E. 2555 (the “Regulation”) was issued did not impose any obligation upon the accountable prosecutor to notify the disputants in writing of their rights to the mediation process to be conducted by responsible prosecutor(s), but the disputants themselves shall initiate the mediation process through officers in charge. This Regulation has come into force since 1 July 2012, and it demands collaboration of the Department of People’s Rights Protection and Legal Aid (the “Department”). → Read more

The Computer Crime Act B.E. 2550 (“Act”) imposes criminal offences under Section 14 that whoever, for example, (1) inputs into a computer system any obscene data which is accessible to the public; (2) inputs into a computer system any data in violation of national security according to the Criminal Code; or (3) inputs into computer system false data in a manner likely to cause injury to national security, another person or the public, shall be punished with imprisonment not exceeding 5 years and a fine not exceeding 100,000 Baht, or both. → Read more