Friday, February 28, 2014

Thai Lies

Thailand, Asean's second largest economy, is one of the most unequal societies in Asia. In 2011, the most recent year for which official figures are available, its Gini coefficient, a widely used measure of inequality, stood at 0.484. This was lower than Hong Kong's 0.537 that year, but higher than the United States' 0.475. The Gini yardstick ranges from zero to one, with higher values meaning more inequality. Singapore's Gini coefficient last year was 0.463.

Chulalongkorn University economist Pasuk Phongpaichit revealed figures that about 100,000 bank accounts, each with more than US$300,000, account for nearly half the value of all bank deposits in the country. Yet these accounted for just 0.5 per cent of the total number of bank accounts. The top 10 per cent of landowners own 61 per cent of total title land, she noted.

Prime Minister Yingluck is worth Bt603 million ($18 million), while Democrat Party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva has assets worth Bt54 million. Protest spokesman Akanat Promphan, a former Democrat legislator, has net assets of Bt101 million and drives a 4.4-million-baht car.  Another protest leader, Suthep Thaugsuban, a former Democrat and from a wealthy land-owning family in Surat Thani province, is tainted by graft allegations.

It appears that being less a thief in Thailand makes a person more honourable! The campaign slogans appear to be "Vote for me , i’m not as big a criminal as the other guy"

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