[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index
BKK POST: January 24, 1998: THAI-BU
- Subject: BKK POST: January 24, 1998: THAI-BU
- From: suriya@xxxxxxxxxxxx
- Date: Fri, 23 Jan 1998 22:58:00
January 24, 1998
Thaksin tries to
clinch satellite deal
Lease of Thaicom transponder urged
Former deputy premier Thaksin Shinawatra is in Rangoon trying
to clinch a satellite leasing deal with Burmese leaders, sources in
the telecom industry said.
According to a Burmese television report monitored by AFP, the
communications tycoon held talks in Rangoon on Thursday with
First Secretary Khin Nyunt of the ruling State Peace and
Development Council. Foreign Minister Ohn Gyaw and other
senior Burmese officials attended the meeting at the Defence
Industry sources in Bangkok said Mr Thaksin was trying to
finalise a deal offering Burma the lease of a Thaicom satellite
transponder. Burma's current lease of the transponder of Hong
Kong's AsiaSat is due to expire in March.
Mr Thaksin decided to engage in the talks himself because
AsiaSat had made what the sources described as "a good offer"
to the Burmese leadership for a new lease.
According to the sources, the success of Mr Thaksin's mission
depended on how much he was willing to help Burma shoulder
the additional cost of replacing certain equipment in order to
change to the Thaicom system.
A billionaire who left Shinawatra Group in 1994 to become
foreign minister in the first Chuan Leekpai government, Mr
Thaksin was labelled the richest minister in the former
governments of Banharn Silpa-archa and Chavalit
Yongchaiyudh, which he served as deputy prime minister.
The Shinawatra Group's three satellites have broad coverage in
Asia including Laos, Burma, Malaysia and Vietnam.
The group has been trying hard to maintain local customers,
mainly television operators, and to expand to neighbouring
markets because its monopoly in the satellite business is due to
run out after the year 2000.
The group, however, has failed to penetrate emerging markets,
with basic telecom projects in Laos, Cambodia and Burma
A source said: "Shinawatra's new approach shifting from
competing for a telecom concession to satellite business may be
appropriate as it will pave the way for other business
opportunities, including programme provider for the Burmese TV
operator, which is owned by the ruling military junta."
© The Post Publishing Public Co., Ltd. All rights reserved 1998
Contact the Bangkok Post
Web Comments: Webmaster
Last Modified: Sat, Jan 24, 1998