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No blackout on Jan 13: Thai minister

Updated: 2014-01-07 14:36
( Xinhua)

BANGKOK - There will be no power blackout, oil or gas shortage on Jan 13, the day of the planned Bangkok shutdown by the People's Democratic Reform Committee, caretaker Energy Minister Pongsak Raktapongpaisarn said in Bangkok on Tuesday.

Pongsak said this before attending the meeting of the caretaker cabinet at the Army Club, which is to be chaired by caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra.

He said about 73 fuel outlets selling petrol, diesel or gas in inner areas of Bangkok are likely to be affected by the shutdown next Monday, but they all have backup plans to ensure smooth service on that day.

Pumps in the nearby provinces of Bangkok will not be affected by the anti-government rallies, led by protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban, he added.

The Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand and its labor union had earlier issued an assurance that there will be no electricity cuts on Jan 13.

On the other hand, companies in Bangkok were told to figure out back-up plans to cope with the planned shutdown.

The warning came after the Joint Standing Committee on Commerce, Industry and Banking, which comprises the Federation of Thai Industries, the Thai Chamber of Commerce and Thai Bankers' Association, met on Monday to assess the impact of political rallies on businesses.

According to the meeting, the Stock Exchange of Thailand will continue operating on Jan 13 along with some other businesses, in the hope that the demonstrations will not turn violent.

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