By ERICH PARPART
“We expect more retired civil servants to buy this round of government bonds that will be offered from October 19 to February 29, 2016, with a minimum purchase of Bt1,000 and a maximum of Bt2 million per person per account,” said Suwit Rojanavanich, director-general of the Public Debt Management Office.
The four banks that will offer the bonds are Krungthai Bank, Siam Commercial Bank, Bangkok Bank and Kasikornbank.
Meanwhile, the amount of public debt reached Bt5.73 trillion or 42.81 per cent of gross domestic product at the end of August, of which Bt5.3 trillion was domestic debt and Bt352 billion foreign debt.
Public debt increased by Bt18.171 billion from the end of July, while outstanding government debt increased by Bt19.508 billion in the same period when Bt33 billion in loans were used to make up the deficit and Bt6.025 billion in investment loans.
Of the Bt6.025 billion in investment loans, Bt2.661 billion were re-loans to state-owned enterprises for use in construction of MRT urban rail lines, the renovation of eight State Railway of Thailand railways and the purchase of Airbus planes for Thai Airways International, while another Bt3.147 billion were loans in baht to pay off foreign-currency debts.
Of the Bt2.661 billion, the Mass Rapid Transit Authority received Bt791.67 billion in loans for construction of three rail lines: Bt401.17 billion for the Blue Line extension, Bt226.18 billion for the Green Line and Bt164.32 billion for the Purple Line.
The MRT Blue Line currently runs from Hua Lamphong to Bang Sue and the 27-kilometre extension will form a loop where the current terminus at Bang Sue is being extended to Tao Poon as part of the Purple Line project.
Of the debt owed to the Financial Institutions Development Fund, Bt270.771 billion had been paid off as of the end of fiscal 2015, leaving outstanding FIDF debt of Bt998.791 billion.