The military dictatorship seems firm on pushing ahead with the purchase of big kit items for the navy. In this case, the promised and approved purchase is of three Chinese submarines.
Of course, the purchase of subs requires considerable spending on pens and docks, repair facilities, and other minor stuff like torpedoes and so on. Not to mention training costs.
Recall General Prayuth Chan-ocha trumpeting a by-2-get-1-free deal the other day? Seems he was babbling, the purveyor of another lie. This is what Wikipedia says:
On 2 July 2015, the Royal Thai Navy (RTN) formally selected China’s Yuan-class (Type 041) platform to meet a requirement for three submarines. The RTN’s procurement committee voted unanimously in favour of purchasing the submarine, which has been designated S26T (Thailand), a modified export version of the Yuan-class. On 1 July 2016, the RTN submitted a funding plan for its 36 billion baht submarine procurement project to the cabinet for consideration with the expenditure to be spread over 11 years. If approved, the first submarine would be bought for 13 billion baht between fiscal years 2017-2021. The second and third submarines would be purchased during the remainder of the 11-year period
There is plenty of scope for enrichment. Yes, we know the junta and the dictators say this deal is “transparent,” but does anyone recall a tendering process?
Whatever they say, the evidence is that it is these kinds of big ticket purchases that keep military types very wealthy.