Bureau Chief, Thailand, Myanmar & Indochina, Bangkok, Thailand, Singapore
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Aug 30, 2015

Thai police hunt more suspects after Bangkok bomb arrest

BANGKOK (Reuters) – Police probing Thailand’s deadliest bombing raided a second location and widened their search for more suspects on Sunday after a foreigner was arrested and stacks of fake passports and bomb-making materials found at a Bangkok apartment block.

Authorities said police were monitoring about 1,000 mobile phone numbers and checking photographs used in around 200 seized passports to track down members of an unspecified group they believe orchestrated the Aug. 17 attack on a Hindu shrine in Bangkok. The bombing killed 20 people and stunned Thailand.

Aug 30, 2015

Mystery man in Bangkok bomb probe ‘never said a word’

BANGKOK (Reuters) – The evidence seized by police investigating Thailand’s deadliest bombing includes an apparently damning trove of explosives, fertilizer, and piles of fake passports, but the shabby-looking foreigner they arrested on Saturday remains a mystery.

There has been no word of his nationality, affiliation or whether the evidence seized in a shabby Bangkok apartment block amounts to a smoking gun for the attack on a crowded downtown shrine that killed 20 people two weeks ago.

Aug 29, 2015

Thai police arrest foreign man over Bangkok bombing

BANGKOK (Reuters) – Thai police said they arrested a foreigner on Saturday who matched the description of a man who left a bag at the site of a Bangkok blast that killed 20 people nearly two weeks ago.

Police raided a decaying four-floor apartment block in a suburb of the capital and found “multiple” fake passports and bomb-making materials they said may have been used in the Aug. 17 bombing at a Hindu shrine, the deadliest in the country’s history.

Aug 23, 2015

After failed attempts to remove rival, Myanmar’s president used force

NAYPYITAW/YANGON (Reuters) – Myanmar President Thein Sein had tried and failed at least twice before to topple his arch-rival Shwe Mann, but when armed police burst into the headquarters of the country’s ruling party late on Aug. 12 he finally succeeded.

Police piled the mobile phones and computers from those inside on a desk and then stood by as the president’s supporters met to enact an order from the president to replace Shwe Mann as chairman of the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP).

Aug 23, 2015

Insight – After failed attempts to remove rival, Myanmar’s president used force

NAYPYITAW/YANGON (Reuters) – Myanmar President Thein Sein had tried and failed at least twice before to topple his arch-rival Shwe Mann, but when armed police burst into the headquarters of the country’s ruling party late on Aug. 12 he finally succeeded.

Police piled the mobile phones and computers from those inside on a desk and then stood by as the president’s supporters met to enact an order from the president to replace Shwe Mann as chairman of the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP).

Aug 23, 2015

Insight – After failed attempts to remove rival, Myanmar’s president used force

NAYPYITAW/YANGON (Reuters) – Myanmar President Thein Sein had tried and failed at least twice before to topple his arch-rival Shwe Mann, but when armed police burst into the headquarters of the country’s ruling party late on Aug. 12 he finally succeeded.

Police piled the mobile phones and computers from those inside on a desk and then stood by as the president’s supporters met to enact an order from the president to replace Shwe Mann as chairman of the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP).

Jul 23, 2015

Thai regulator to shake up mutual fund industry

BANGKOK (Reuters) – Thailand’s market regulator plans a major shakeup to the country’s 3.5 trillion baht ($100.98 billion) mutual fund industry to meet rising demand for riskier investment instruments with higher yields.

The Securities and Exchange Commission plans to issue regulations by the end of September that would allow the launch of hedge funds and junk bond funds, SEC Secretary General Rapee Sucharitkul told Reuters in an interview on Thursday.

Jul 21, 2015

BOJ’s Kuroda: Japan’s inflation to accelerate ‘considerably,’ sees no need for more QE

BANGKOK (Reuters) – Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said on Tuesday he expected inflation to accelerate considerably in the coming months due to a tight labor market, and he brushed off the idea of needing more quantitative easing.

Kuroda, in response to questions after giving a speech, also said consumer prices are still on track to meet the central bank’s 2 percent inflation target sometime around the first half of fiscal 2016.

Jul 21, 2015

BlackRock steps up China drive with new license to raise onshore funds

BANGKOK/HONG KONG (Reuters) – U.S. fund giant BlackRock Inc (BLK.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) has won a special new licence that will allow it to raise funds in China directly for the first time, a senior executive told Reuters, paving the way for the world’s largest money manager to expand in the mainland.

Speaking in an interview in Bangkok this week, BlackRock vice chairman Philipp Hildebrand, said his company was granted a so-called Qualified Domestic Limited Partnership (QDLP) license “reasonably recently”. He said BlackRock, with about $4.5 trillion in assets, is committed to China and will “do whatever that entails” to provide asset management services there.

Jul 20, 2015

Bank of Thailand says no target for Thai baht

BANGKOK, July 20 (Reuters) – The Bank of Thailand has no
target for the Thai baht but is pleased to see that it has
weakened since April and is moving more in line with regional
currencies, Governor Prasarn Triratvorakul said on Monday.

Thailand’s interest rates are near a record low after two
surprise cuts this year. But lower rates have done little for
the Thai economy as consumers, struggling to pay off record
household debt, keep their money in their pockets.

    • About Simon

      "Simon Webb is the bureau chief for Reuters in Thailand, Myanmar & Indochina and is based in Bangkok. Simon guides news coverage from five countries with top stories including the political unrest in Thailand and Myanmar's struggle to emerge from decades of dictatorship. Before taking on bureau chief responsibilities, Simon was Asia commodities editor based in Singapore. Members of his team were part of a group that won scoop of the year at Reuters' 2012 journalism awards for coverage of the impact of international sanctions on the flow of oil from Iran. Simon has previously worked in Dubai and London ..."
      Joined Reuters:
      2004
      Languages:
      English, Spanish
      Awards:
      Reuters C&E Journalist of the Year 2009
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