Thailand’s Economic Development Plan is Moving Forward Under the New Policy | Tractus

Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin

On September 11, 2023, newly elected Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin presented his government’s new policy initiatives for promoting economic growth. Apart from the short-term policies for immediate implementation, the new policies are focused on medium and long-term initiatives to promote economic growth, improve infrastructure, and strengthen the competitiveness of Thailand’s industrial base as well as enhance the attractiveness of Thailand as an investment destination.

  • The government aims to increase the nation’s income by implementing a proactive diplomacy approach to access new markets such as the EU, Middle East, India, Africa, South America, and the existing markets of neighboring countries in ASEAN.
  • The government will build relationships with groups of countries and international economic & development organizations to increase confidence in Thailand.
  • The government will accelerate the negotiation of international Free Trade Agreements (FTAs).
  • To attract investment, the government aims to improve an investment approval process through the Board of Investment (BOI) and Eastern Economic Corridor Office (EECO) leading to increased production capacity, value-added products, and a strong economic foundation for the long term.
  • To spread prosperity and economic activities to various regions of Thailand, the government will continue to develop special economic zones (SEZs) and expand economic corridors in the four regions.
  • To serve the needs of human capital in the manufacturing, service, and technology sectors, the government will welcome foreign workers and expert expatriates to add value to the economy and society.
  • To respond to the global and local demand for goods and services, the government will invest in logistics infrastructure – road, sea, and rail, facilitating trading activities to increase commercial opportunities.
  • To make a new growth engine, the government will promote the new economy including the digital economy, high-tech industry, green industry, national security industry, and technology and innovation R&D.
    • Digital economy & high-tech industry includes utilizing technology and digital systems, frequencies and satellite orbital rights, and cyber security.
    • Green industry includes promoting clean/renewable energy production and utilization to be in line with the guidelines for sustainable economic and environmental development. Moreover, the government will carry on the carbon neutrality policy aiming to gain a trade competitive advantage for sustainable development to drive the nation’s economy.
    • The national security industry includes support in restructuring security agencies to prepare for emerging security threats and challenges in the 21st century to protect Thailand’s independence as well as create stability and safety in all areas of the country.
    • Technology and innovation research and development include precision farming for agriculture and frontier research for education. 

The announcement covers a wide variety of issues that will impact Thailand’s economic development but did not elaborate on the details of how the various policies will be implemented. Important stakeholders in the relevant industry sectors are encouraged to provide their inputs as to the implementation of the policies to ensure Thailand can be competitive in the current challenging business and economic environment. These policies, if executed properly, are expected to expand international trade, attract more foreign investment and improve agricultural productivity, resulting in higher levels of economic growth.

As the first economic policy pronouncement of the new government, we can expect to see more details being announced in the next several months. Contact Tractus if you require any further information on Thailand’s investment and business environment or how to grow your business in Thailand.

Authored by

Arunrat Chumroentaweesup is a Consulting Manager based in Thailand.

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