Business leaders believe this week's change at the top of the Board of Investment (BoI) will have at most only a minimal effect on foreign direct investment (FDI), while investment promotion policies should not see any major changes.
The cabinet on Tuesday approved the annual reshuffle of senior Industry Ministry officials, this year including BoI secretary-general Atchaka Sibunruang.
She has been replaced by Udom Wongviwatchai, the ministry's chief inspector-general.
Dr Atchaka has assumed the position of deputy permanent secretary.
Tanit Sorat, a vice-chairman of the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI), said Dr Atchaka's transfer will not affect FDI, as the investment promotion agency already has clear plans in place.
"But we would like to see the new secretary-general do more to help small and medium-sized enterprises invest abroad rather than just attract FDI to Thailand," he said.
Another FTI vice-chairman, Manapol Poosomboon, said the public should give the new BoI chief time to do his job, although he must continue existing policies.
"Mr Udom can think up new projects. But he must not change existing policies, as that would throw the private sector into confusion," he said.
Industry Minister M.R. Pongsvas Svasti said Dr Atchaka was moved because Mr Udom, who obtained his master's degree in the US, has a sound knowledge of both macroeconomics and engineering.
The new BoI boss has also held several other important positions in the ministry including director of the Office of Industrial Economics, he said.
But an industry source said the real reason for the transfer was Dr Atchaka did not follow many policies of the current industry minister, who has ties to Suwat Liptapanlop, the de facto leader of the Chart Pattana Puea Pandin Party.
Mr Suwat was among politicians whose five-year ban from politics expired in May.
About the author
- Writer: Nanchanok Wongsamuth
Position: News Reporter