Thailand's dream team steps down
Friday 20 June 1997
Amnuay Viravan, the embattled finance minister handed in his resignation, followed shortly afterwards by commerce minister, Narongchai Akrasanee. Others in the political "dream team" set up to mend Thailand's beleaguered economy may quit today.
The resignations mark a blow for the Prime Minister and have sparked widespread nervousness about what lies ahead. Once a leading "Asian Tiger", Thailand's rapid economic growth profited from high levels of foreign investment and an open, "globally-orientated" economy. But last year underlying troubles rose to the surface.
The continuing economic crisis, which has seen Thailand's growth rates plunge from highs of the late 1980s to just over 5 per cent last year, could lead to more political instability and even the fall of the government: Chavalit Yongchaiyudh, the Prime Minister, has staked his future on reviving the country's economy. He is expected to name new finance and commerce ministers over the next few days, but has temporarily placed himself in charge of running the economy. It has been dogged by big debts, a massive slump in property prices and rising unemployment.
The Prime Minister assured investors that there would be no immediate change in economic policies and said his priority would be to defend the country's currency, the baht, from attack by speculators.
Neither Mr Amnuay, the finance minister, nor Mr Narongchai were elected members of parliament. The technocrats were brought into government as part of the Prime Minister's "dream team" to bolster confidence in government economic polices. Some members of the governing coalition were never comfortable with this and have repeatedly blocked measures recommended by the duo, preventing tight - and unpopular - fiscal polices being implemented.
- 1 Forget 'The Dress': Here are five of the biggest news stories you might have missed
- 2 The black and blue dress: Makers considering a white and gold version
- 3 PornHub turns masturbation into energy in bid to save the planet
- 4 The remarkable archaeological underwater discovery that could open up a new chapter in the study of European and British prehistory
- 5 MH370: 'Putin ordered plane to be flown to Kazakhstan space port,' conspiracy theory claims
Boris Nemtsov shot dead: Outspoken Putin critic who had expressed fears for his life is killed near the Kremlin
PornHub turns masturbation into energy in bid to save the planet
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin, says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'
White and gold or blue and black – what colour is the dress? An eyewitness gives a definitive answer
Saudi Muslim cleric claims the Earth is 'stationary' and the sun rotates around it
New theory could prove how life began and disprove God
Half of Ukip voters say they are prejudiced against people of other races
This is what it's like to be dead, according to a guy who died for a bit
'Cash for access' scandal: Sir Malcolm Rifkind says 'unrealistic' for MPs to live on £67,000 salary
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Aqsa Mahmood branded a 'disgrace' by her parents after claims she recruited three UK girls flying to Middle East
£18000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company specialises provid...
Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: EXETER - A great new opportunity with real pot...
Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: EXETER - An outstanding senior opportunity for...
salary equal to £40K pro-rata: Sauce Recruitment: Are you available to start a...