Korn steps down as Chart Pattana Kla leader, hints he is leaving politics for good

The veteran politician said in a Facebook post that he will support the party’s policies as an ordinary person and will vacation with his family.

The Nation

The Nation



June 26, 2023

BANGKOKAfter his new political party won just two seats in the House of Representatives, veteran politician Korn Chatikavanij announced on Sunday that he had stepped down as Chart Pattana Kla leader and hinted he had had enough of politics.

He will support the party’s policies as an ordinary person and will vacation with his family, Korn said in a Facebook post.

During the election campaign, he had expressed confidence his new party would win enough House seats to implement new and creative business policies to revive the economy.

Among his campaign pledges, he said the next government should force oil refineries to lower their margins to bring down petrol prices. He also proposed that banks stopped using Credit Bureau’s records of loan defaults when considering new loans so that small and medium-sized enterprises could have better access to lending.

But the Chart Pattana Kla Party will have just two representatives in the lower House seats – a Constituency MP and party-list MP.

The post of party-list MP was won by Wannarat Charnukul. And Chart Pattana Kla’s only constituency MP is Prasat Tanprasert, who won in Nakhon Sawan’s Constituency 6.

Korn contested the election only as the second prime ministerial candidate of his party. He did not run for a House seat.

Worse still, the Chart Pattana Kla had brief negotiations to join the Move Forward-led coalition, but it was rejected following an outcry by supporters of Pheu Thai who were furious that Korn had been a leader of the protests against the Pheu Thai government under former premier Yingluck Shinawatra.

In his Facebook post, Korn said he submitted his resignation to Chart Pattana Kla chairman Suwat Liptapanlop last week.

“I met him to thank him for giving me trust and I informed him of my resignation as Chart Pattana Kla leader,” Korn said in the post.

“As the ex-Chart Pattana Kla leader, I would like to thank the people for all the votes that were cast to support our political policies. I’ll continue to support all the policies we have presented in my capacity as a normal citizen.”

Korn also expressed gratitude for his political supporters during his 18 years in politics: “During the past 18 years, I felt very honoured to serve the people and the country I love as an elected politician.

“I would like to thank all of you for helping me carry out this mission since 2005,” Korn added.

“Our country still has a lot of problems waiting to be solved. I would like to extend my moral support to politicians of all parties. I would like to send my special moral support to those who were elected for the first time,” he said.

Korn added that he and his family would take an extended vacation.

“I owe a lot of trips to my family,” Korn said.

Korn was born in London in 1964. He studied at St John’s College, Oxford, and then worked as an investment banker at SG Warburg. In 1997, he founded JF Thanakom, which became Thailand’s largest brokerage.

Korn entered politics in 2001, when he was elected as a Democrat Party MP. He was elected four more times: in 2005, 2007, 2011 and 2019.

He served as Deputy Minister of Finance from 2008 to 2010.

As Minister of Finance, Korn oversaw Thailand’s recovery from the global financial crisis. He introduced a number of reforms, including tax cuts and financial sector restructuring. He was also instrumental in the creation of the Thai Bond Market Association.

Korn quit the Democrat Party in 2020 and set up the Kla Party on February 14, 2020.

In September 2022, he held a press conference with Suwat, saying they would work together in politics.

Korn led the members of the Kla Party to join Suwat’s Chart Pattana shortly after the press conference and the party changed its name to Chart Pattana Kla.

Korn was elected its leader on October 16, 2022.

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