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1.7 million Thais without smartphones register for "Rao Chana" benefits

The Rao Chana scheme has seen a large number of Thais who don’t have smartphones visiting the branches of Krung Thai Bank (KTB) and its mobile units around the country to register in person for the government’s 7,000-baht benefit.

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BANGKOK (NNT) – The Rao Chana scheme has seen a large number of Thais who don’t have smartphones visiting the branches of Krung Thai Bank (KTB) and its mobile units around the country to register in person for the government’s 7,000-baht benefit.

Although it is a long weekend, the mobile units have been operating daily to ensure every eligible person gets registered and receives the benefit as soon as possible.

Fiscal Policy Office Director, Kulaya Tantitemit, as the spokesperson of the Finance Ministry, has confirmed that during the weekend, KTB mobile units have been open for business to provide a registration service for people who do not have a smart phone and want to register for the government’s stimulus package aimed at helping people financially-affected by the Covid-19 outbreak.

For those without a smartphone, registration opened in two rounds. The first one closed on 21st February. Eligibility was verified and announced on 4th March, and recipients could start spending on 5th March. The second round of registrations will continue until 5th March. The verification results will be announced on 15th March, and they can start spending from 19th March onwards.

Spending through this project has reached 58 billion baht. Local vendors have also benefitted from the project as their sales have increased despite complaints that the electronic payment system was down occasionally. The government allocated 210 billion baht to this project, expecting to financially support the people during tough times, while helping to revive the economy, especially small businesses, at the same time.

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Reporter : supawadee wangsri
Rewriter : Hugh Brammar
National News Bureau & Public Relations :
http://thainews.prd.go.th

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Pakorn Peetathawatchai, President, The Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET)

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Pakorn Peetathawatchai, President, The Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET)

What measures has SET taken to support listed companies’ compliance with ESG standards?
PAKORN PEETATHAWATCHAI:

PAKORN: When we first began promoting ESG-compliant investments, we were met with little interest. We attributed this to a lack of clear data to showcase the economic benefits of ESG investment, and perhaps limited clarity as to what constitutes a sustainable or ESG-compliant investment. The launch of the THSI list and, subsequently, the SETTHSI Index, was designed to address this. Our most recent data, comparing returns for the SETTHSI Index with the broader SET and SET100 indices from April 2020 to April 2021, underscores the economic benefits of these investments: the group compliant with ESG standards outperformed the other two indices on every data point. 

As of May 2021 Thailand was home to CG and ESG assets under management totalling BT54.8bn ($1.7bn) across 50 funds – up from 23 funds in 2019. Meanwhile, of the BT187.1bn ($5.9bn) raised in green, social and sustainability bonds since 2018, BT136.4bn ($4.3bn) was raised in 2020 – 83% from the government and the remainder from development banks and private players. This rising demand, in a move to manage risk and generate returns, has been complemented by growing supply and promotion: supply from ESG-compliant businesses aiming for resiliency and sustainable growth, as well as promotion from regulators highlighting investment opportunities with good CG and SD practices. Indeed, the pandemic has been a catalyst in shifting the view of ESG compliance from a luxury to a requirement in the new normal.

In what ways can enhanced standard-setting and regulatory mechanisms overcome the remaining barriers to improved ESG performance?

PAKORN: A multi-stakeholder approach is crucial for enhanced ESG performance – not only in Thailand, but around much of the globe. This can also help to address the standout incumbent challenge: access to reliable, wide-ranging ESG data. For example, the 2020 update to the 56-1 One Report established clear ESG standards and triggered online and offline capacity-building programmes to support listed firms’ compliance. SET is developing an ESG data platform with a structured template to promote the availability of comparable data, maximise value added from corporate sustainability disclosures, and foster collaboration between the business value chain and stakeholders. This is expected to support Thai companies along their ESG journey in an economically sustainable way, result in a greater number of sustainability-focused products and services, drive sustainable investing in the Thai investment community and ultimately “make the capital market work for everyone”, as outlined in the SET’s vision.
 

 

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