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Somkid outlines a bright future for Thai economy

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Somkid outlines a bright future for Thai economy | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Somkid looks to a future and doesn't even mention tourism - The Thaiger
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    • Thailand is poised to soar in the global market with heightened investment attraction and a massive budget earmarked to rejuvenate the economy in the fourth quarter, as the Covid-19 pandemic eases, according to Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak.
    • Mr Somkid says the government also plans to enhance financial cooperation with China and Hong Kong that will lead to business expansion in CLMV countries (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam).
    • Mr Somkid said the country needs to solve economic woes caused by the Covid-19 crisis and prepare the country for the post-pandemic recovery.
    • The direction lies with sustaining the economy so it can progress through the invocation of executive decrees initiated by the Finance Ministry and the Bank of Thailand.
    • One decree sponsored by the Finance Ministry involves the procurement of a one-trillion-baht loan to pay for public health defences against the pandemic and relief money to aid people who have been hit by the crisis.

    “Thailand is poised to soar in the global market with heightened investment attraction and a massive budget earmarked to rejuvenate the economy in the fourth quarter, as the Covid-19 pandemic eases.”

    Enthusiasm from Deputy Thai PM and finance tzar Somkid Jatusripitak speaking to Bangkok Post.

    Mr Somkid believes the government also plans to enhance financial cooperation with China and Hong Kong that will lead to business expansion in neighbours Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam.

    Mr Somkid said the country needs to solve economic woes caused by the Covid-19 crisis and prepare the country for the post-pandemic recovery.

    “Some economic sectors, such as exports, will not contribute much to the economy this year.”

    He has directed the Budget Bureau to find an additional fund of 200 billion baht to help the economy.The fund may also be utilised as a financial buffer, especially if there’s a resurgence of Covid-19 or when other funds for sustaining the economy fall short in the medium term into next year, when the public health problem is expected to subside.

    “The 200-billion-baht fund is set aside from the current fiscal year budget. Of this, 80 billion baht is expected to be obtained for use starting next month.”

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    But he admitted the investments may not be of significant help to the economy in 2020 because the “entire world is experiencing a downturn due to Covid-19”.

  • Mr Somkid also maintains that Thailand has caught the attention of several countries looking to relocate their production in the wake of the pandemic, including China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Japan. He says they are attracted by potential investments in food production, farm product processing and medical equipment manufacturing.

    “Criteria has been recently tweaked to allow foreign investment projects valued at 100 million baht or less to be approved by an investment negotiation panel without having to be submitted to the BoI board. This will bring in more overseas investments.”

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    Finally, the Finance Minister says the Stock Exchange of Thailand will kick off financial service cooperation previously reached with Hong Kong and the Chinese city of Shenzhen…

  • “…with the joint listings on course to being clinched so shares can be traded in Thailand or in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam, which are countries with robust growth of between 5-6% annually.
  • SOURCE: Bangkok Post
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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Kevin Martyn

    June 19, 2020 at 10:03 am

    Come on the story about Thailands economy is someone really looking at Thailand wearing “rose coloured glasses”.

    I am sure many of the countries surrounding Thailand will fix their issues firstly before ever considering the severe economic financial Thailands Government put itself in. Not a thing to do with “Covid 19”

    I’m 100% positive Thailands economy will take at least a decade to show any signs of a recovery.

    I can say with my hands on my heart any Thai national with a “brain” will not be spending there hard earned Thai baht at the shopping “Malls” and booking a holiday in or out of THAILAND! – FACT.

    Thailands government is “Spin Doctoring” and trying to paint a picture that all is “Rosy” with Thailands economy.

    It really is not.

    I read that the USA is now 26 trillions USD in debt. WOW! A trillion plus owed to Chinese!

    At the end of the day that sum of cash shall never get paid back.

    No amount of money pumped into Thailand s economy will do anything as the funds/cash is already lost. Of course you can only dream where the diverted cash will go!!!!!!!

  2. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    July 3, 2020 at 2:13 pm

    The United Nations say Thailand will lose $47 billion.
    I would rather believe the UN than a Thai Finance minister.
    Thailand has lost credibility, with the heavy handed handling of this pandemic.
    No smart investor will trust the present government. There is no telling what they will do to screw things up next.

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Economy

70% of Phuket’s tourism businesses are closed, many for good

Caitlin Ashworth

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70% of Phuket’s tourism businesses are closed, many for good | The Thaiger
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Most tourism businesses in Phuket have closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and they probably won’t be up and running again until foreign tourists are let back in Thailand. Phuket Governor Narong Woonciew says around 70% of tourism businesses have closed, most of them just temporarily, but some have shut down permanently. But the statistics are not quite that simple, with the east side of the island, largely inhabited by locals with the central business district of Phuket Town and some of the more popular expat towns, doing far better than the tourist magnets of the west coast. The Thaiger estimates that on the west coast the number would exceed 90%.

Before the pandemic, tourism to Phuket brought in 450 billion baht a year with 400 billion baht from foreign visitors while the other 50 billion baht was from domestic tourists. Thailand has been trying to increase domestic tourism to help revive the industry after the pandemic. Phuket’s governor says it helps, but not enough.

“Their visits can help solve some of our economic problems, but they cannot replace the need of foreign tourists.”

66.8% of tourism businesses in Phuket have closed temporarily while 2.8% have closed permanently, according to data by the Digital Economy Promotion Agency. (Again the percentage along the west coast is MUCH higher – just take a drive through Paton, Kat, Karon). Phuket’s governor is trying figure out how to recover the economy. And fast.

“By the end of September, the number of businesses to be closed will increase up to 70% for sure.”

While many businesses are closed, the governor says Phuket is “almost 100% ready to welcome foreign tourists.” The governor says he can’t give an answer to when foreign tourists will arrive in Phuket, but he claims they’ve “prepared every step,” from checking in at the airport to hotel quarantine. They’re just going to install some new temperature check machines at the Phuket International Airport and review the procedures for welcoming the tourists.

“We have to work and prepare carefully to welcome foreign tourists… We have to gradually open our door to welcome small groups of people first, in order to test our system, and then open for bigger groups.”

At the moment, only 3 venues in Phuket have been approved to operate as alternative state quarantine facilities. Anantara Phuket Suites & Villas has 100 rooms available, Anantara Mai Khao Phuket has 36 villas and Trisara resort has 15 villas. All are 5 star venues with a commensurate 5 star cost.

SOURCE: Phuket News

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Economy

Ministry of Labour, CP Foods to hire 8,000 graduates to help reduce unemployment

Caitlin Ashworth

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Ministry of Labour, CP Foods to hire 8,000 graduates to help reduce unemployment | The Thaiger
PHOTO: CP Foods

To help reduce unemployment and boost the economy after the pandemic, 8,000 graduates will be hired by the company Charoen Pokphand Foods, known as CP Foods. Thailand’s Ministry of Labour recently signed a memorandum of agreement with the company.

4,000 of those jobs will be in Bangkok and metropolitan areas while the other 4,000 more in the upcountry. The job offers vary from positions in the computer science field to positions in the culinary industry.

Labour Minister Suchart Chomklin says the government has a policy to unite all sectors of the society to revive the economy from the coronavirus crisis that caused job cuts, leaving many unemployed, especially new graduates.

He adds that CP Foods has been constantly supporting the government in Covid-19 relief effort since the beginning of the outbreak. This post Covid-19 collaboration will create stability for people at all levels and build more small and medium sized enterprise, or SME, owners that are the foundation of Thai economy.

There’s also a discount coupon giveaway from CP Foods and the minister says it will help reduce cost of living for people who are eligible for social security benefits.

CEO of CP Foods Prasit Boondoungprasert says CP Foods is managed in line with the parent group CP Group’s policy, to solve the Thailand’s unemployment problem, particularly for new graduates, by creating job opportunities and job security. He says it’s an “engine for economic revival.”

CP Foods will also provide a business opportunity for SME franchises like FiveStar and STAR Coffee, which need a small budget and small space to kick off.

The company will also offer training courses with experts to guide them to start up the business. It expects to create 4,500 franchise owners nationwide.

CP Foods will have a book at the Job Expo Thailand 2020 this Saturday until Monday at the Bangkok International Trade & Exhibition Centres, or BITEC. Those interested can click HERE for more information.

To learn more about starting a FiveStar franchise click HERE and for a STAR Coffee franchise click HERE.

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Economy

4 Thai banks to be investigated for “suspicious transfers” after FinCEN files report

Caitlin Ashworth

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4 Thai banks to be investigated for “suspicious transfers” after FinCEN files report | The Thaiger
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4 Thai banks are being investigated after an international money laundering report said the Thai banks had “suspicious financial transactions.” The report found 92 “suspicious” transactions in and out of Thailand totalling to $9,558,752 USD received in Thailand and $31,750,000 USD sent out.

Files were allegedly leaked from the US Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, known as FinCEN, and journalists from the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, or ICIJ, tracked the money. The FinCEN Files report from the ICIJ says it “reveals the role of global banks in industrial scale money laundering,” citing a total of $2 trillion USD in suspicious global transactions from 1997 to 2017.

The Anti-Money Laundering Office plans to investigate Kasikorn Bank, Bangkok Bank, Krungthai Bank and the Export Import Bank of Thailand. The office’s acting secretary general Preecha Charoensahayanont says the office is discussing the report with the Bank of Thailand and financial intelligence organisations, according to the Bangkok Post. He says the information needs to be verified first.

“The information from the media has yet to be verified and no one knows if it came from an official intelligence organisation of the United States… There will be an appropriate response. It does not mean that whenever there is any news report, a big investigation will follow. That would cause panic.”

The Kasikorn Bank allegedly had 37 suspicious transactions, sending out $9,450,000 USD in suspicious funds and receiving $835,606 USD. Bangkok Bank allegedly had 52 suspicious transactions, receiving $5,966,141 USD and sending out $22,300,000 USD. Krungthai Bank allegedly had 2 suspicious transactions, receiving $200,000 USD. Export Import Bank of Thailand allegedly had 1 suspicious transaction, receiving $2,557,005 USD.

In 2016, the Bangkok Bank allegedly sent out $22,300,000 USD to the CIMB Bank Berhad. The Bangkok Bank also allegedly received a total of $5,920,731 USD from the Israel Discount Bank in 45 different transactions from June 2,2013 to November 12, 2013.

Kasikorn Bank allegedly sent out $9,450,000 USD to the DNB Nor Bank Asa. They also allegedly had 18 transactions with the VP Bank AG, receiving $511,606 USD, and 5 transactions 18 transactions with DMS Bank & Trust, receiving $324,000 USD.

Thailand suspicious transaction data by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists FinCEN Files report. Click HERE to follow the money.

4 Thai banks to be investigated for

SOURCES: ICIJ | Bangkok Post

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