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Pheu Thai opens fire at submarine deal

Apr 30. 2017
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By The Nation

Key figures from the Pheu Thai Party have voiced their opposition against the Cabinet’s approval of the Chinese submarine purchase, saying they saw a potential burden that the multi-billion-baht deal would leave for future governments.

Pheu Thai’s acting secretary-general Phumtham Wechayachai, former education minister Chaturon Chaisang and former energy minister Pichai Natipthaphan joined in opposition against the deal a couple of days after former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra expressed her own disagreement. 

Via Twitter, Chaturon said the procurement should be cancelled by the government to prevent future damage. 

While the Royal Thai Navy planned to hold a press briefing on the deal today, Chaturon said he viewed the matter as multidimensional, which should be thoroughly explained by the prime minister, defence minister, finance minister and officers from the Budget Bureau.

Phumtham said authorities should seriously reconsider the deal. “This is not political bias. Even supporters of this government do not agree with this procurement,” he said. “It’s as if the government wants to conceal the matter, which would be bound to the national budget for the next 11 years.”

Meanwhile, Pichai expressed doubts that the submarine deal could actually boost the economy as the junta government has claimed. “People could have believed that if they had enough money in their pockets now,” he said.

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