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Free trade talks between Thailand and European Union likely this year

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Thailand is expected to start a first round of negotiations toward a bilateral free-trade agreement with the European Union by the middle of the year, a move seen as necessary if the Kingdom is to remain competitive with potential rivals for European business such as Vietnam and Singapore.

Deputy Commerce Minister Alongkorn Ponlaboot said the Cabinet had recently approved plans for the ministry to set up a special committee to conduct a feasibility study on negotiating an FTA with the EU.”The study is expected to be concluded in the next few months, to determine whether the Kingdom should start bilateral talks with the EU,” said Alongkorn.

The EU last week announced that it would start negotiations for bilateral trade pacts with Vietnam and Singapore soon, as the Asean-EU FTA talks have been suspended for a year. Previously, the EU wanted to conclude an FTA with Asean as a whole. However, problems arising due to the varying development levels and differing interests of Aseans members led to the suspension of the talks in 2008. The EU, therefore, expressed interested in bilateral agreements with certain countries in Asean, including Thailand.

via Free trade talks with EU likely this year.

Tech

Global fashion e-tailer Shein launches new hub in Singapore

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Shein has websites for Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines and has plans to create a standalone website for Malaysia too.

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Singapore

How Businesses in Singapore can Reduce Overhead Costs During the Pandemic

The government is expected to draw on S$53.7 billion (US$40 billion) from its reserves for this year and an additional S24 billion (US$17.8 billion) over the next three years to assist local companies transition into a post-pandemic business environment.

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How Businesses in Singapore can Reduce Overhead Costs During the Pandemic

Singapore’s government has provided an array of fiscal and non-fiscal incentives to help businesses reduce their overhead costs during the pandemic.

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