The Finance Ministry has laid down 8 strategic plans in preparing Thailand towards the realization of ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), while trying to promote Thailand as the capital of ASEAN.
During a seminar on “Thailand’s strategies towards AEC”, Finance Minister Kittiratt Na-Ranong said the strategies start with having a good vision, enhancing the country’s potentials, and educating Thai citizens regarding the AEC. The ministry will work to ensure that wealth would be distributed across the country, not just in Bangkok, where people are wealthier than those in the remote areas.
He said Thailand is now investing in national logistics system, particularly in water management and transportation to help Thai entrepreneurs reduce the operating costs. With its geographical advantage, Thailand which is situated in the center of ASEAN, provides an easy access to other ASEAN partners like Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, and Malaysia.
Once the ASEAN Community becomes materialized, the minister believed Thailand would be a favorable choice for foreign investors to use in connecting them with the rest of the region as well as China and countries in the Indian Ocean. The minister urged the private sector to tap the opportunity by getting connected with counterpart firms in ASEAN and join hands with the government in making Thailand the center point of ASEAN.
Meanwhile, Mr Kittiratt also expressed his confidence that Moody’s Investor Service, a credit rating company, would move Thailand up the rank in its credibility list due to the massive amount of government spending on the country’s infrastructure and the implementation of the 300 baht minimum wage policy. However, he said the rating is not solely based on the economy, but also on the political situation that has a huge impact on the investors’ confidence.
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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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