Siam Cement on fast track for approval

The Industry Ministry is speeding up Siam Cement Group“s request to have its stone-mining licence renewed for another 25 years by abolishing the compulsory opinion-gathering process from related agen…

The Industry Ministry is speeding up Siam Cement Group“s request to have its stone-mining licence renewed for another 25 years by abolishing the compulsory opinion-gathering process from related agencies. A source from the ministry“s Natural Resources Department said that the department had forwarded the group“s request to Industry Minister Suriya Jungrungreangkit, and expected that the minister would submit the issue to the Cabinet for approval at its next meeting. The mining licences were issued to Siam Cement Group“s Kaeng Khoi cement plant in Saraburi 25 years ago for 12 mining fields. One of the licences expired on 7 February and the rest will gradually expire between now and June. The source said Suriya was skipping the process of sounding out opinions from related agencies – the Agriculture and Cooperatives Ministry and the Environment Policy Office – because he did not want Siam Cement to experience disruption. Forwarding the issue straight to the Cabinet would instead require the Cabinet Secretary“s office to gather opinions and that would take less time, he added. Siam Cement“s request was filed in the previous government“s term when Suwat Liptapallop was industry minister.Before forwarding the issue to the Cabinet, Suriya visited the cement plant and met Siam Cement“s president, Chumphol Na Lamlieng.