By The Nation
MQDC has formed a joint venture with Japan’s Itochu to develop Whizdom Asoke-Sukhumvit, a 39-story condominium by Benjakitti Park, at an investment cost of over Bt9.5 billion. The Japanese trading company is taking a 38 per cent interest in its first investment to develop property in Thailand for over 20 years.
The joint venture demonstrates both the project’s and Bangkok’s global appeal, said Assada Kaeokhiao, president of the Whizdom brand under MQDC – Magnolia Quality Development Corporation Limited, a Bangkok-based international property developer.
“The joint venture reflects Whizdom Asoke-Sukhumvit as a top-quality asset for residents and investors worldwide, bringing Itochu back to the Thai real estate market, with its prime location, unique design and premium quality,” he said.
“This agreement also attests to Bangkok’s enduring attraction for lifestyle and investment. Amid a cooling market, the outlook remains buoyant for projects that can offer truly unique aspects, such as stunning views over a 450-rai (72-hectare) forest park. We are honoured to partner with a company with the prestige of Itochu, ranked high in the Fortune 500.”
The joint venture agreement was formalised at a signing ceremony at Waldorf Astoria Bangkok in Magnolias Ratchadamri Boulevard (MRB).
Forum held in push for Thai trading hub
The Ministry of Energy targeted Thailand as a LNG/LPG regional trading hub, as it held the “Optimising LNG and LPG Trade in Asia 2019” forum, focusing on business linkages between Thai and international entrepreneurs. The event, held last week at St Regis Hotel in Bangkok, attracted representatives of producers, traders and shippers from over 15 countries.
From increasing energy demand and slowing production of natural gas in the region, the ministry’s support and endorsement for the event was especially timely given the need for supporting the Gas Plan 2015 and reductions in the LNG, LPG and operation costs in Thailand.
LNG and LPG shipping is one of the most efficient means of transporting gas from producing regions to demand centres in Asia, but requires strategic planning of infrastructure and shipping years ahead of schedule.
Asia is the largest consumer of energy in the world, accounting for 42.5 per cent of the world’s consumption of energy, and is the world’s second-fastest growing energy consumption market.
However, natural gas only accounts for 11.5 per cent of Asia’s energy consumption and given the global concerns over emissions and air pollution, is rapidly gaining popularity and has many opportunities for growth.
Thailand’s demand for natural gas and LPG has been growing at 3.6 per cent and 4.1 per cent respectively while production has simultaneously been falling by 2.7 per cent.
In 2017, Thailand has imported over 13.4 million cubic metres of natural gas and that figure is forecasted to increase 10 per cent annually. Imports will cover 71 per cent of Thailand’s natural gas demand and 19.5 per cent of Thailand’s LPG demand by 2036, and this means an increasing reliance on LNG and LPG trading to meet Thailand’s energy needs.
All this means it is more important than ever for Thailand to bring together regional and international stakeholders to ensure that availability of LNG and LPG is sufficient to drive economic growth in Asia, says the Ministry of Energy.
Thailand’s 4.0 energy outlook and policies will take centre-stage as Thailand angles to become a regional energy hub. Thailand, as an early adopter of gas for transportation will also set the example for the neighbouring countries as a leader in LPG utilisation, sharing their knowledge and experience with Myanmar, Vietnam and Cambodia.
New campaign for traditional trade
Ichitan has launched the “Ichitan cartons: Win Mercedes-Benz and Gold” promotion campaign to thank mom-and-pop shops and traditional wholesalers nationwide. Four Mercedes-Benz GLA 200 Urban, valued at Bt2.1 million each, and 200 one-baht gold prizes will be given away. The campaign is designed to boost Ichitan product positioning and strengthen traditional trade nationwide.
Tan Passakornnatee, president & CEO of Ichitan Group Plc, said, “Traditional trade plays a crucial role in our success. They play a crucial role in bringing our latest summer products, such as Ichitan Happy Green Tea, Ichitan Chew Chew and Yen Yen Fun, to consumers nationwide, and help our products maintaining their leadership in the market. To thank them for their contribution and give them chances to win big prizes, we have launched this “Ichitan cartons: Win Mercedes-Benz and Gold” campaign. This campaign could boost our sales by 19 per cent in the summer,” said Tan.
The “Ichitan cartons: Win Mercedes-Benz and Gold” campaign will run until June 15, 2019.
Traditional trade shops and customers nationwide are encouraged to buy cartons of participating Ichitan products – Ichitan Green Tea, Ichitan Happy Tea, Ichitan Chew Chew, Yen Yen and Yen Yen Fun, in bottles and UHT boxes.
Shops and customers can cut the designated part of the cartons, and send them to PO Box 107 Khlong Chan Post Office, Bang Kapi, Bangkok 10240, or drop them at the provided boxes at shops and Makro to enter this promotion campaign.