Billionaire-turned-politician Thanathorn to put assets into blind trust
Future Forward party leader Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit announced today that he would place all his personal assets into a “blind trust” to set an ethical standard for political office holders in Thailand.
Speaking at a press conference today, the young firebrand politician said that blind trusts for businessmen entering politics is commonplace, or even a legal requirement, in western democracies to avoid accusations of conflicts of interest.
Although the current Constitution mandates that political office holders must not have interests in any company which operates a state concession, Thanathorn said it does not mandate the use of blind trusts.
The Future Forward party leader said he was in the process of working with Phatra Securities Company to establish a voluntary blind trust into which he will place all his personal assets under management by the company.
“I want to set a new political standard in Thailand. The first merit of the blind trust for me is that I don’t have to be worried about managing my personal assets and can concentrate on working for the people,” said Thanathorn, adding that his initiative also helps promote transparency.
A blind trust is a legal mechanism by which the beneficiaries have no control or knowledge of what is happening within the trust. The trustees are granted power of attorney and have full discretion over the assets.
Thanathorn went on to say that he had nothing to do with his mother’s shareholding in the Matichon Group of newspapers and, regarding the family owned Thai Summit Company, he said that the company’s trading partners are mostly foreign firms and the company has not had any business dealings with any state entity in Thailand.