Transport Ministry defends the use of Section 44 to speed up train project
The Transport Ministry has defended the governmentâ€™s invocation of Section 44 of the interim Constitution to speed up the implementation of the Thai-Chinese high-speed train project between Bangkok and Nakhon Ratchasima.
Mr Surapong Paitoonpong, assistant permanent secretary of Transport Ministry made the clarification in defence of the governmentâ€™s action against the allegations made by the Thai Constitution Protection Association.
He said that Section 44 did not exempt Chinese engineers and architects from the the engineer and architect laws except for the provisions regarding application for operating licenses.
He insisted that the Thai side could file civil lawsuits to demand compensation from the Chinese side in case damages are caused by the Chinese during the project implementation.
Mr Surapong dismissed the allegation that the Chinese company, engineers and architects working on the project would not enjoy extraterritorial rights as claimed by opponents of the project.
Works that are not related to project design, work supervision and train system are subjected to Thai law and the Chinese staff are required to follow the Thai laws except for seven legislations meant to facilitate the working of the Chinese staff in Thailand, he said.
The assistant permanent secretary said the NCPO order issued by virtue of Section 44 is required to follow the Integrity Pact â€“ that is the interests of the public, service quality, efficiency and utilization of resources must be taken into account.
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