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Sunday, June 23, 2024

Bangkok Post – Cash gifts, free milk raise risks to Thailand, Indonesia ratings

Visitors enjoy taking selfies and eating snacks at Chatuchak Weekend Market, a popular outdoor shopping venue among Thais and foreigners. (Photo: Apichart Jinakul)

JAKARTA/BANGKOK – Southeast Asia’s new leaders risk blowing past budget constraints to make good on costly campaign promises of cash handouts and free lunches, increasing the risks to their prized investment-grade ratings.

Indonesia’s likely next President Prabowo Subianto plans to provide free meals and milk to more than 80 million school children across the country to combat extreme poverty and stunted physical development. The project is estimated to…

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