11 July 2024

The Bangkok Mass Transit System (BTS), the operator of the Green Line sky train service, has been urged to end its continuous advertising, demanding the settlement of a large debt owed to it by Krungthep Thanakom, an investment arm of the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration.

Krungthep Thanakom owes BTS 20 billion baht for operations and maintenance and 20 billion baht for the installation of electrical and mechanical systems for the extensions from Mor Chit to Khu Khot in Pathum Thani and from Bearing to Keha in Samut Prakan.

Assistant Professor Dr. Prasaeng Mongkolsiri, president of Krungthep Thanakom, said today that BTS has been “bombarding” members of the public with non-stop advertisements, through various channels, demanding Krungthep Thanakom settles the debt owed to BTS.

He said that such publicity may lead to public misunderstanding over the actions of Krungthep Thanakom and the BMA and may influence the decisions of investors in the Thai stock market. He reminded BTS of their good bilateral business relationship.

Dr. Prasaeng said that BTS took the case to the Administrative Court last year to demand payment.  His administration, which took over after Bangkok Governor Chadchart Sittipunt assumed office, sought permission from the court to submit additional evidence, but this was rejected.

On September 7th, the court ruled in favour of BTS, ordering Krungthep Thanakom to pay BTS the outstanding amount owed. Krungthep Thanakom appealed against the verdict to the Supreme Administrative Court and the case is still pending.

Dr. Prasaeng said that the company has never exploited the conflict to influence public sentiment in their favour because it has confidence in the judicial process, to which BTS had resorted in the first place.

Apart from the court proceedings over the service fees owed to BTS, he said that the company has also set up a committee, led by a former Appeals Court president, to examine the contract for the electrical and mechanical systems.