255 electric vehicles (EVs) have been registered in September, bringing total EV registration in the nine months of 2021 to 1,485 units, increasing 42.4 per cent year on year, according to the Federation of Thai Industries Automotive Industry Club.
“As of September 30, Thailand recorded cumulative number of BEVs (battery electric vehicles) at 3,547 units, increasing 92.56 per cent from the previous year,” said club vice president and spokesman Surapong Pisitpattanapong. “Meanwhile, the number of HEVs (hybrid electric vehicles) was at 180,175 units, increasing 11.29 per cent year on year. Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) were recorded at 29,401 units, increasing 337.25 per cent year on year.”
For electric motorcycles, the club reported total number of BEVs at 5,548 units, increasing 102.93 per cent year on year, and HEVs at 8,510 units, increasing 31.96 per cent year on year. Lastly, Thailand recorded total 123 electric buses at the end of September, increasing 2.5 per cent from the previous year.
“The government has been supporting the manufacturing of electric buses by domestic factories. We estimated that this year up to 500 units will be produced domestically,” said Surapong.
He further added that the government set the target that by 2027 Thailand will use 282,240 electric vehicles or 26 per cent of total vehicles used in the country, and will manufacturer at least 380,250 electric vehicles, or 17 per cent of total vehicles manufactured in the country.
“The export of electric vehicles and their parts are expected to grow at 5 per cent annually, while the investment in research and development of technology related to electric vehicles is expected to increase by 20 per cent by 2027,” he said. “We also expect to have trained not less than 30,000 skilled personnel in the fields related to electric vehicles and have installed additional 5,000 public fast charge stations for electric vehicles nationwide by 2027.”
TOKYO – Major Japanese companies are putting more focus on the development of femtech-related products and services that help women deal with wellness issues they face.
From moisture-absorbing underwear for use during menstruation and menstrual cups, to items that help women deal with the physical issues that occur during pregnancy or menopause, a wide range of products make use of technology to support women.
In the past decade, femtech goods and services have become popular overseas, mainly in countries in Western Europe and North America. In Japan, the market is growing, centering around goods and services related to menstruation.
A start-up’s online sales of femtech products have been leading the way in Japan, but this year, major companies dealing in clothing and daily goods have entered the market. There is now a broader selection of such goods and services for women.
In mid-September, Uniqlo Co. started selling period underwear that can absorb 1-1.5 ounces (30 to 40 milliliters). The triple-layered underwear made with the company’s Airism material is also antibacterial and odor- and water-resistant.
Uniqlo has set the price at $17.50 (1,990 yen), lower than similar products being sold for around $45 (5,000 yen) by major underwear manufacturers.
“There were many requests for the product from customers, and their response after its release was great,” said Tadashi Yanai, chairman and president of Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing Co. “By discovering the needs of people who face various situations, we want to continue developing better products.”
According to a public relations official at the company, the product has been well-received by people across a wide age range. A typical comment is along the lines of, “As the material feels smooth and comfortable, I have no sense of discomfort, even if I wear it all day long.”
Unicharm Corp. has developed a menstrual cup and began selling the product on a limited basis in late April. A 30-year-old from Chiba Prefecture, who started using the product after giving birth, said: “I can’t even feel it. Daily life during my period has become very comfortable.”
New types of services related to femtech have also started. From this month, the Prince Park Tower Tokyo has been offering an overnight package for women to heal mentally and physically through listening to infrasound or bathing in a natural hot spring.
The global femtech market is projected to reach $50 billion (5.7 trillion yen) in 2025, according to U.S. market research firm CB Insights, which is why major companies are being drawn to this sector.
Another reason has to do with productivity in Japan. According to the Economy, Trade and Industry Ministry, the annual economic loss due to menstruation is $6 billion (682.8 billion yen).
“Pushing ahead with the improvement of the working environment for women will lead to enhanced productivity at businesses,” the ministry said in a presentation material.
In Japan, women tend to avoid discussing topics related to their physical health such as menstruation. Many women often put up with their period-related symptoms, considering it normal to be in pain.
According to a labor force survey taken by the Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry, however, the employment rate of women ages 15 and over was 51.8% in 2020, up 5.5 percentage points from 2010. As the number of working women has increased and topics such as menstruation are more visible than before via social media and the like, women’s interest in femtech goods and services has grown.
As the economy ministry anticipates that the femtech sector has the potential to become a growth industry, in June it began extending support. For instance, it has designated 20 business schemes with femtech-related service projects to be eligible for government subsidy.
For many people in Japan, their attention was first drawn to femtech thanks to Fermata Inc., which was founded in October 2019. The company started selling only femtech-related products online. This proved so popular that it began selling some of its items at a store in the Roppongi district of Tokyo in 2020.
That year, when various femtech-related products came on the market, was dubbed the “first year of femtech in Japan.” This year as well, the trend continues.
As tensions over the Taiwan Straits mount, everyone needs to think through whether war is inevitable. Leon Trotsky once said “You may not be interested in war, but war is interested in you.” And if we slip into war by what World War One historian Barbara Tuchman called the March of Folly, can the Great Powers step back from mutual nuclear annihilation?
When the world’s unipolar power incurred more pandemic deaths (at last count 752,000 deaths) and got defeated in Afghanistan by tribal warriors, no one should be surprised to ask whether America (and by extension Western civilization) is in decline. The prestigious US magazine Foreign Affairs devoted three issues this year to: “Can America Recover?”, “Decline and Fall – can America ever Lead Again?”, and “Can China Keep Rising?”. For those reading the endless barrage of invectives against America’s rivals, it certainly feels like the Cold War has returned with a vengeance.
However, for Greta Thunberg and fellow climate activists, surely the world leaders’ priority is to work together to address our looming climate disaster?
Why are Alphas fighting in a Burning Planet? Shouldn’t we call “Time Out” to see how to address collectively the urgent and existential issues of human and planetary distress?
Next month, the World Economic Forum is meeting in Dubai with an agenda to move from a Great Reset to a Grand Narrative Initiative “to shape the contours of a more prosperous and inclusive future for humanity that is also more respectful of nature.” Grand Narratives may sound like a media story, but the reality is that the masses are unlikely to buy an elite-driven dream until they are part of the conversation.
Take Harvard historian Samuel Huntington’s Clash of Civilizations narrative. Written in 1996, Huntington seemed prescient in predicting the clash between Western Civilization and the rest, namely, Sinic, Japanese, Hindu, Islamic and Latin American. He asked poignantly, “The central theme for the West is whether, quite apart from our external challenges, it is capable of stopping and reversing the internal process of decay. Can the West renew itself or will sustained internal rot simply accelerate its end and/or subordination to other economically and demographically more dynamic civilizations?”
Huntington basically reflected the worry of British historian Arnold Toynbee (1889-1975) that since civilizations are born out of primitive societies, the key is whether the elites can respond effectively to new challenges, internal or external. Toynbee saw clearer than other Western historians like Gibbon (Decline and Fall of Roman Empire) that collapses are not necessarily due to barbarian invasions, but whether the ruling elite can overcome their own greed or interests to address the new challenges.
In pure economic, financial, technology and military terms, few question that the West remains superior in almost all aspects, except in population numbers. According to the Maddison projections of population and GDP, the rich countries (essentially Western Europe, plus Western Offshoots (US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand) and Japan would be 947 million people and 36.3% of world GDP by 2030, whereas Asia (China, India and other Asia) would have population of 4.7 billion and 49.6% of GDP. This reverses the 2003 position when the West (including Japan) accounted for half of world GDP, compared with one-third for Asia. This dramatic reversal is due to the rise of China, India and rest of Asia to higher middle income levels by 2030, mainly through trade and catch-up in technology.
In coming decades, roughly one billion rich West must contend with the rising powers of China (1.4 billion), India (1.3 billion) and Islamic countries (1+ billion) which have cultures and ideologies very different from the West. If the planet heats up as expected, expect more Latin Americans, Africans and Middle East poor arriving on the West’s borders to migrate. At the same time, with the American demonization of Russia and China pushing them closer together, the United States is confronting at least three fronts (including Middle East) amidst a fractious domestic arena, where political polarization prevents policy cohesion and continuity.
This current situation reminds Islamic countries, following their great historian Ibn Khaldun (1332-1406 AD) of the cycle of dynastic and empires that Islam went through. When the social cohesion or bonds (asabiya) is strong, there is state legitimacy and empires rise. When it is weak, dynasties fall and empires are lost. After the January 6, 2020 insurrection in Washington DC, many are inclined to believe that fratricidal tribalism is happening now inside America.
Similarly, Chinese macro-historians Sima Qian (Records of the Grand Historian, 146-86 BC) and Sima Guang (Comprehensive Mirror for Governance, 1019-1086 AD) also recorded that empires fall not so much from external invasion but internal decay. In Yale historian (Rise and Fall of Great Powers) Paul Kennedy’s terminology, has the United States arrived at the point of “imperial over-reach”, when her global ambitions and responsibilities exceed her financial and industrial capacity? After all, the US government debt has reached as high as the end of the World War Two level without even starting World War Three.
But all historians know that rise, decline or fall is never pre-ordained. The past is not a scientific linear predictor of the future. The unipolar order has weakened, without any Grand Bargain between the Great Powers on what the new order should even begin to look like. Any Grand Bargain requires the incumbent hegemon to admit that there are equals and peers in power that want the rules of the game reset from the old order. This does not mean that anyone will replace the United States soon, because everyone wants to buy time to set their own house in order after the pandemic.
In short, before any Grand Narrative, we need a whole series of conversations with all sides, from the weakest to the most powerful, on what individually and collectively, the post-pandemic order should look like. There can never be one Grand Narrative by the elites, until there are enough dialogues between the many.
When the meek are weak, they suffer because they must. But when the strong are insecure, that is when war begins.
A country which hosts scores of outstanding startups that make it an example for the world.
Australian Ambassador Allan McKinnon will enlighten the audience about his experiences in successfully developing and effectively promoting startup in Australia, a country which hosts scores of outstanding startups that make it an example for the world.
See you at our informative & exciting “Virtual Forum: Thailand Startup in the Post-Covid Era” on October 29, 2021, from 2PM to 4PM
A wily thief descended into a Phuket gold store through the roof, reportedly attacked two elderly shop attendants and forced them to open a safe, then took off with his gold haul valued at THB10 million.
The stunning incident happened on Saturday in Muang district.
The robber, who was said to be “not older than 35”, reportedly hit the two shop attendants – the owner’s cousins aged 65 and 71 – with a piece of wood and brandished a long knife to force them to open the gold safe.
According to police on Sunday, the robber escaped with his expensive haul through the same hole he had drilled in the ceiling.
However, he left his shoes at the scene and police believe they are an important piece of evidence that could help in identifying him. But officers admitted they were not sure whether he is Thai or a foreigner.
Artful thief enters store through roof, disappears with THB10 million in goldArtful thief enters store through roof, disappears with THB10 million in goldArtful thief enters store through roof, disappears with THB10 million in gold
The mean gross happiness of Thais is 6.71 out of 10, which is the criterion of being “quite happy”, a Super Poll survey showed.
Super Poll Research Centre director Noppadon Kannika, along with Chularat Niratsayakul, an independent scholar in agriculture and rural development, presented the results of the survey of 1,092 people across the country, conducted from October 15-23.
The rank of overall happiness of Thai people in security, politics and bureaucracy (full score 10): No.1: To see Thai people unite, showing loyalty gratitude to the King and the kingdom of Thailand, 8.48 points No.2: Concerning the work of civil servants and the bureaucracy, 4.98 points No.3: Due to the Covid-19 crisis and the economic situation, 3.63 points No.4: When thinking about conflicts or divisions of people in the nation, 3.56 points No.5: The level of happiness towards Thai politics, 3.51 points
Thais quite happy, survey shows
The gross rank of Thai people’s happiness in social aspect (full score 10): No.1: The happiness score when thinking of their own family, 9.12 points No.2: The happiness in religions and cultural traditions, 9.09 points No.3: When thinking about one’s own physical health, 8.55 points No.4: The level of happiness concerning mental health, 8.25 points No.5: The happiness towards relationships among the communities, 8.19 points No.6: Concerning safety in life and property, 6.76 points
The rank of happiness gross in terms of economy (full score 10): No.1: Concerning the implementation of the sufficiency economy principle, 8.57 points No.2: The happiness level towards career, 7.83 points No.3: When thinking about property, land assets and housing, 7.39 points No.4: The opening of the country to revitalise the economy and solve the crisis, 6.43 points No.5: The happiness score due to debt, both in the system and in the informal system, 4.42 points
Financial institutions are reconsidering granting credit to the Charoen Pokphand-led consortium for construction of a high-speed rail project linking three airports, Thansettakij newspaper reported on Monday, based on information from a news source.
According to the newspaper, the Covid-19 pandemic was a key factor in commercial banks and financial institutions reconsidering granting credit to big projects.
Of the various projects is the high-speed rail linking three airports – Don Mueang, Suvarnabhumi and U-Tapao.
The news source said returns on this project – calculated by the banks and institutions – are likely to be lower than the previously expected THB50.9 billion. The internal rate of returns of the railway project was reportedly only 14.2 per cent.
Thansettakij added that this information had not been confirmed by CP or the State Railways of Thailand as it could not yet contact representatives of the two organisations.
The CP-led consortium had earlier won the bidding and a contract was officially signed on October 24, 2019.
The consortium, first named The Eastern High-Speed Rail Linking Three Airports Co Ltd, later changed its name to Asia Era One.
It was allure, grace, charm, style and “willpower”: an overjoyed Anchilee Scott Kemmis overcame stiff competition to proudly walk away with the Miss Universe Thailand 2021 title on Sunday. She now hopes to repeat her success in Israel in December by bagging the coveted Miss Universe 2021 crown.
The Miss Universe Thailand 2021 finalé was held at Pattaya’s Nong Nooch Tropical Garden on Sunday night.
Anchilee Scott Kemmis, a 22-year-old Thai-Australian beauty who won the hearts of judges and Thais, was crowned Miss Universe Thailand 2021. Thai-African Tharina Botes was the runner-up while Nanthiya Suwansawaeng was placed third.
Thai-Australian beauty Anchilee crowned Miss Universe Thailand
After being crowned, Anchilee happily told reporters she was proud to represent Thai women and was grateful for all the support.
“Since participating in the contest, I have been proud to represent women. I am not worried about being bullied due to my figure. The question part of the pageant did not scare me as I always respond with honesty. I believe my willpower and sincerity won me the crown. The best part is that I can make my parents proud,” Anchilee said.
Thai-Australian beauty Anchilee crowned Miss Universe Thailand
When asked about being ready to compete on the world stage in December at the Miss Universe 2021 pageant in Eilat city, Israel, Anchilee voiced confidence that she is ready, but would like the improve her stage walk.
The new beauty queen said she has less than three weeks to prepare, but is confident of her ability to bring the prestigious international crown home.
The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) is working with the Pollution Control Department to set up measures to tackle the PM2.5 (particles less than 2.5 micrometres in diameter) dust problem, which is expected to escalate during the coming cool season, Bangkok Governor Aswin Kwanmuang said on Sunday.
“BMA officials will increase the inspection of vehicles emitting black smoke in all districts, while encouraging users to keep their vehicles in optimum working condition and turn off the engine while parking,” he said. “Also, burning of garbage or weeds in an open space will be prohibited to reduce the source of air pollution in the city,” Aswin made clear.
He said the BMA would dispatch water trucks to spray roads, public spaces and plants to reduce dust accumulation and enhance cleanliness across the city.
Bangkok prepares to battle PM2.5 problem as cool season approaches
“The BMA has instructed 308 crematoriums in the province to keep their furnaces in perfect working condition and use the heat of at least 850 degrees Celsius to ensure complete burning and reduce smoke emission,” the governor said. “Meanwhile, all 77 shrines in Bangkok have been asked to cut down on the number of joss stick pots and allow the use of only short joss sticks that have a reduced burning time,” he said.
Bangkok prepares to battle PM2.5 problem as cool season approaches
To make sure that Bangkokians stay healthy during the cool season, the BMA will dispatch mobile medical units to provide free physical check-ups and medical advice to people residing in areas that have a high level of PM2.5 and other air pollution.
“People should continue to wear face masks when leaving their homes and refrain from outdoor activities for an extended period,” Aswin advised.
The Private Hospitals Association said on Sunday that it would allocate 40 per cent of 1.9 million Moderna Covid-19 vaccine doses to hospitals nationwide between November and December.
ZP Therapeutics, a division of Zuellig Pharma and the official partner of Moderna in Thailand, had earlier confirmed it would deliver 1.9 million Moderna doses to Thailand in the fourth quarter, with 560,000 doses arriving by November 5.
It added that another 6.8 million doses would be delivered in the first quarter of next year.
Association president Chalerm Harnphanich explained that a total 8.6 million Moderna doses would be delivered to Thailand by March next year. Of this lot, 1 million would go to the Thai Red Cross Society and 100,000 to Ramathibodi and Siriraj hospitals.
He also said the association would allocate 40 per cent of 1.9 million doses to hospitals nationwide between November and December, while the remaining 60 per cent would be gradually allocated.
“All Moderna vaccine doses that will be delivered to Thailand are first generation and provides the best immunity against the Covid-19 Delta variant,” Chalerm claimed.
He said people who have already registered for Moderna jabs at private hospitals would receive their jab by queue.
Chalerm added that each Moderna vaccine dose costs THB1,650, which includes the vaccination charge and insurance in case the recipient develops side effects.