Committee formed for cooperation

Committee formed for cooperation

"This is no time ot stress independence. It's time to work together." — Somkid Jatusripitak, Deputy prime minister. (Photo by Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)

The government is setting up a monetary and fiscal committee to oversee policy as it attempts to deal with the impact of the global economic slowdown and stabilise the local currency.

Speaking to the heads of state agencies and state-owned enterprises yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak said the new committee includes the Bank of Thailand, Finance Ministry, the Stock Exchange of Thailand, the Securities and Exchange Commission and other related agencies.

"Economic agencies need to work together, while fiscal and monetary policy should bring about maximum efficiency in economic management," said Mr Somkid.

"Economic agencies should closely monitor global economic movement. This is no time to stress independence. It's time to work together."

He said all agencies that supervise economic agencies also need to introduce new policies and carry out development projects that were implemented by the previous government to restore confidence among the public and investors.

Mr Somkid said the private sector will play a significant role in restoring the confidence of foreign investors, adding it is their direct duty to join hands with the government sector to promote Thai economic growth.

The first economic ministers meeting is scheduled to consider economic stimulus packages on Aug 21.

He said the Finance, Tourism and Sports, and Agriculture and Cooperatives ministries have already prepared new measures to help boost the economy.

On Monday, Finance Minister Uttama Savanayana said under the new stimulus packages, state banks such as the Small and Medium Enterprise Development Bank will come up with measures to assist SMEs and startups, while the Government Savings Bank and Krung Thai Bank will introduce aid measures for low-income earners.

The Government Housing Bank is expected to implement rules to assist citizens, while the Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives and the Agriculture and Cooperatives Ministry will offer measures to help farmers affected by the drought.

Mr Uttama said tourism promotion measures to attract foreign tourists as well as boost domestic tourism will also be introduced.

Mr Somkid said the government has already laid down the foundation for the first phase of the infrastructure development at the EEC and the next phase is human resource development.

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