Survey: Most firms know little about 'Thailand 4.0'

Survey: Most firms know little about 'Thailand 4.0'

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha is curious about one of the Thai-designed robots on display at Government House on Wednesday ahead of the Thailand Research Expo 2016, which runs until Sunday at CentralWorld in Bangkok. The robots are designed for rescue operations and elderly care. (Photo by Thanarak Khunton)
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha is curious about one of the Thai-designed robots on display at Government House on Wednesday ahead of the Thailand Research Expo 2016, which runs until Sunday at CentralWorld in Bangkok. The robots are designed for rescue operations and elderly care. (Photo by Thanarak Khunton)

Do you know what "Thailand 4.0" is? If you don't, don't blame yourself as you could be among the majority.

A survey by the Centre for Economic and Business Forecasting showed that slightly more than half of the businesses knew little about Thailand 4.0.

When asked to rate their understanding on Thailand 4.0, 55% admitted they had little knowledge about it and only 1% responded that they knew it comprehensively. In between, 27% of the respondents said they somewhat knew what it meant and 17% said they knew it pretty well.

The results, which were released on Thursday, came as a surprise as the idea is closely related to businesses.

Thailand 4.0 is the vision of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and his government to revamp the economy so it is driven by creativity and innovation. The goal is to move the country out of the middle-income trap.

Thailand 1.0 was retroactively used to describe the period when agriculture was the major economic driver while 2.0 focused on light industries. Thailand 3.0 relied on heavy industries and exports.

"Thailand has now laid out a national development master plan to prepare the country for the fourth generation, or Thailand 4.0, which will focus more on research and development, and innovations," he told Han Zheng, the Communist Party secretary of Shanghai, during his visit to Government House on May 11, according to a Government House news release.

The same message has been sent out to local people and foreign guests in several occasions.

The centre, which is part of the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, carried out the survey on 600 business operators from Aug 9-14. About 70% of them were in the manufacturing and service sectors and they represented small, mid-sized and large firms.

According to the survey, 58% of the small enterprises and 57% of the medium-sized ones said they did not know much about Thailand 4.0.

Among the big-scale industries in the survey, 20% said they thoroughly knew what it meant and 75% understood it moderately.



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