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Thai junta finds funding easy to come by as banks lend again

Published on Jun 12, 2014 6:32 AM
Police officers stand guard at a shopping mall in Bangkok on June 8, 2014. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

BANGKOK (REUTERS) - As Thailand's junta tries to pull the economy back from the verge of recession, the generals have a significant advantage over the government they ousted - the country's banks are prepared to lend them money, and cheaply too.

When the military government tendered for a 50 billion baht (S$1.9 billion) loan this month to help pay money owed to rice farmers, 12 banks offered a total of 145 billion baht.

The state-run Government Savings Bank (GSB) won the tender, lending for three years at a rate of 2.1792 per cent, much lower than a yield of 2.45 per cent on three-year government bonds.

In contrast, commercial banks and even state banks had been reluctant to lend to the government of Yingluck Shinawatra after it was put in caretaker mode in December.

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