For such a big change it was a very small announcement. It was an extraordinary move.
Student protesters are asking why public funds are being handed to a king who spends more time in Germany than he does in Thailand — an issue most Thai media avoid mentioning. It is hard to overstate the impact of these criticisms in a country where the royal family was until recently viewed as untouchable. Support for the protests will be tested on Wednesday, when the students plan their next big demonstration.
They point out that it has risen sharply since the king took the throne after his father King Bhumibol Adulyadej died in While the Thai king spends most of his time in Germany, he has taken firm steps to consolidate the power and wealth of royal institutions back in Bangkok since ascending to the throne.
Factbox: thailand's new king among world's wealthiest monarchs
Inthe year the law on crown property assets was passed, the king combined the former royal household office with the privy council and a royal personal safety body to create a single Royal Office. Last year he issued a decree transferring two army regiments to the Royal Office, putting them under his direct control. Move Forward also questioned royal spending paid by other government departments, including Bt1. The CPB was chaired by the finance minister untilwhen the king appointed as its head air chief marshal Satitpong Sukvimol, who now also chairs SCG.
At the time the bureau owned 3, acres in Bangkok and another 13, acres outside the capital, according to the book. It belongs to the crown. Since the king took ownership of CPB assets, that has not been the case.
More recently, German media have reported extensively that the king is renting a hotel in Garmisch-Partenkirchen in the Bavarian Alps. However, Mr Pargent says he established that the king would have been liable for inheritance tax. Diplomats are immune, but the Thai king is not a diplomat and his residence in Tutzing is not a consulate, according to the MP. However, through our questions we were at least able to shine a bit of light on the matter.
In Bangkok, Mr Thanathorn and MPs from his former party have exhausted their inquiries for the current budget round.
But, they say they will take up the matter of royal spending again next year. One thing that is transparent, the opposition figure says, is the status of royal assets. Get alerts on Maha Vajiralongkorn when a new story is published. Manage cookies.
The Big Read Maha Vajiralongkorn. The role and wealth of the Germany-based king is under unprecedented scrutiny amid national protests. John Reed in Bangkok October 13, Parit 'Penguin' Chiwarak, a student protester, says: 'The royal institution can interfere in politics because they have enough money.
Video: Why young people are protesting in Thailand. Protesters have called for a boycott of Siam Commercial Bank, in which the king owns a Reuse this content opens in new window Comments Jump to comments section.
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Thailand's protesters are targeting the monarchy's wealth, so just how rich is it?
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