After its debut over five weeks ago, the government’s Pracha Wiwat welfare scheme has released many projects which are receiving both positive and negative feedbacks. Finance Minister Korn Chatikavanij, chairperson of the scheme’s follow-up panel, reported the progress of each project.
As for the first project on social security system, Mr Korn said the Ministry of Labor is amending related laws in order to include more laborers into the system. In the second project, the government provides loan access for informal workers. At present there are about 700 to 800 taxi drivers benefiting from the project. The government has allocated an initial budget of 5 billion baht to the project and is ready to increase the sum if it is not sufficient.
In the third project involving registration of motorcycle-taxi drivers, the minister reported that up to 120,000 drivers have registered themselves up, and the authorities will try to bring the rest into the system by March. As for the fourth project in which street hawkers will be given proper selling venues, he believed that 250 spots would be arranged for hawkers within the next two weeks.
As for the fifth project on national fuel oil fund, Mr Korn stated that the national energy policy committee will on Wednesday consider a proposal to revoke the LPG price subsidization for the industrial sector. He expected that conclusion would be drawn at the meeting. Regarding free electricity for small households, he estimated that a resolution would be drawn by May 2011 on whether or not the ten million households consuming less than 90 units of electricity each month would continue to be eligible for the waiver.