By Thai Newsroom Reporters
FORMER WORLD TRADE ORGANISATION director-general Supachai Panitchpakdi is not going to be named deputy prime minister in charge of economic affairs, said a deputy leader of the Democrat Party today (Oct. 2).
Deputy Interior Minister Nipon Boonyamanee categorically dismissed rumours circulated in the media that Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha will shortly name the former WTO head as deputy premier in charge of economic affairs as well as energy minister in concurrent fashion. Nipon quoted Prinn Panitchpakdi, a son of Supachai, as denying such hearsay.
Supachai was the director-general of the World Trade Organisation from September 1, 2002 to September 1, 2005 and secretary-general of the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) from September 1, 2005 to August 31, 2013.
Meanwhile, two persons are largely expected to be named new members of the Prayut cabinet to replace Thammanat Prompow and Naruemon Pinyosinwat who were earlier ousted as deputy agriculture and cooperatives minister and deputy labour minister respectively, following last month’s no-confidence motion against the premier and others at parliament.
Prayut has recently assigned Palang Pracharath Party leader/Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan to take charge of four agencies of the Agriculture and Cooperatives Ministry earlier run by Thammanat instead of returning the vacant seat of deputy agriculture and cooperatives minister to Prawit’s party where Thammanat currently performs as secretary-general.
The latest role for the Palang Pracharath Party leader at the Agriculture and Cooperatives Ministry has reportedly dissatisfied the Democrat Party whose leader/Deputy Prime Minister-cum-Commerce Minister Jurin Laksanavisit has earlier concurrently taken charge of the portfolio with Democrat Party secretary-general Chalermchai Sri-on currently performing as agriculture and cooperatives minister.
Former WTO director-general Supachai Panitchpakdi. Top photo: UN.org, Home Page photo: Worldinvestmentreport.unctad.org