In Thailand, A Rare Peek At His Majesty’s Balance Sheet

Forbes wrote a great article regarding the His Majesty’s finances and investments in Thailand and I thought it would be an interesting read to share. I’ve put below the first paragraph and the source link. Enjoy.

In Thailand, A Rare Peek At His Majesty’s Balance Sheet

Thailand’s King Bhumibol, who turned 84 last December, is the world’s longest serving ruler. He is also the richest – by a comfortable margin. Last year Forbes estimated his net wealth in excess of $30 billion, beating oil-rich Brunei’s Sultan Bolkiah into second place. A gaggle of Gulf potentates and European royals round out our list. Bhumibol’s top ranking is controversial in Thailand, to say the least. Republicans grumble that the monarchy is wasteful and inefficient. Others are horrified that foreigners have the gall to turn a lens on their deified ruler. Royal courtiers insist that Forbes has it all wrong, that the billions on the balance sheet belong to the crown, not the man. They also contest the property valuations on which much of our estimate is based. Yes, they say, the monarchy is sitting on prime tracts of land in Bangkok and central Thailand. But it leases land and rent properties at subsidized rents that no commercial agency would tolerate. So the king isn’t loaded, just landed (and a value investor, as we’ll see).

Source: http://www.forbes.com/sites/simonmontlake/2012/01/20/in-thailand-a-rare-peek-at-his-majestys-balance-sheet/

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