Japanese seek revival of flood projects

Japanese investors have asked the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) to carry on building flood prevention projects initiated by the Yingluck Shinawatra administration.

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They also want the council to promote Japanese investment in Thailand.

NCPO head Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha yesterday invited the Japanese Chamber of Commerce (JCC) and Japan External Trade Organisation to discuss the investment situation. He also wanted to hear the views of Japanese investors after the coup.

Gen Prayuth told the Japanese investor representatives that trade and ties between Thailand and Japan would stay intact, said Col Sirichan Nathong, deputy NCPO spokesman.

The representatives urged the coup-makers to keep building the projects started after the heavy floods in 2011. Japanese firms with factories here were among the hardest hit.

The Central Administrative Court ordered a halt to the 350-billion-baht water management scheme in July last year, saying its projects were likely to have environmental impacts. In January this year, a Supreme Administrative Court judge suggested public hearings into the scheme be completed before the projects go ahead.

Col Sirichan said Gen Prayuth has assigned state agencies to consider the request.

According to the JCC statement issued yesterday, it is concerned the political turmoil might hurt the economy significantly.

"On this occasion we regret that the discussion among the [political] parties which was coordinated by the military failed to narrow their differences and could not meet any conclusion, and this situation has resulted," the JCC said.

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