Reaping Rewards With Big Thai Projects

Golden geese in the golden land – The Nation, March 30, 2009

[This article is from 2009, but it gives interesting insight into big money intertwined with politics and the benefits of being in a sitting government.]

Over four years ago when the new airport opened, there was a storm of allegations over corruption. There was the small matter of a Bt1.71 billion gap between the purchase price and the selling price for the CTX baggage scanners. But there were others too: a Bt1 billion contract for ground services awarded to a Singapore-registered company whose owner was traced to a derelict house in the Bangkok suburbs; Bt4 billion for wiring and ducting to a company with no track record; half a billion for luggage trolleys of unbelievably clunky quality; Bt5 billion for operating security guards; Bt3 billion for limousine services; an allegation that Thaksin’s sister demanded a bribe of Bt300 million for the car park concession; an advertising concession to Thaksin’s son; and an Bt8 billion contract for building drains allocated to the family of another minister…

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