BoI tasked with stimulus drive
Somkid says services, agriculture key forces
The government has ordered the Board of Investment (BoI) to draft measures aimed at promoting investment to help farmers and the service sector, the key drivers for generating economic growth.
As the government seeks to help Thai farmers improve their income and quality of life, such investment incentives could boost Thailand's farm product prices, Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak said without identifying specific measures to prop up agricultural investment.
The agriculture sector currently accounts for 8-10% of Thailand's GDP.
The government also wants to foster greater added value in the service industry, as the tourism sector is one of the key forces behind Thailand's economic growth.
"The agricultural sector and services industry are key drivers that can boost Thailand's economy, [therefore] the government wants to push [investment] promotion to support locals in both sectors," Mr Somkid said.
He said the Thai government also wants to speed up investment in the country this half, while insisting that the BoI should take more action to attract and stimulate investment incentives.
BoI secretary-general Hiranya Suchinai said the board will propose measures to help farmers next month.
"The BoI plans to link farmers, agriculture and technology together, in which the BoI will synergise with the Digital Economy and Society Ministry to help local farmers by incorporating technology [into farming and production]," Mrs Hiranya said. "The BoI expects to see a new investment package [aimed at] helping local farmers this year."
At present, Thailand has a tax incentive policy to support and promote the new era of Thai industries. The 10 industries are next-generation cars; smart electronics; affluent, medical and wellness tourism; agriculture and biotechnology; food; robotics for industry; logistics and aviation; biofuels and biochemical; digital; and medical services.
Meanwhile, Mr Somkid said the government will meet representatives from the Japanese government on Sept 11 to discuss mutual cooperation and support for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) from both countries.
"The Thai and Japanese governments will talk about cooperation to support SMEs, the Eastern Economic Corridor and the Thailand 4.0 policy, all of which will move Thailand forward," Mr Somkid said, adding that Japanese officials also plan to meet Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha.