Country faces shortage of high- and mid-level labour
Recruitment consultancy Robert Walters Thailand says the nation's high- and mid-level workforce is insufficient, particularly in the 12 targeted industries of the flagship Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC).
Natiya Saul, director for Bangkok and the Eastern Seaboard, said the corridor has been able to attract new investment for the 12 industries, but the country's labour market cannot supply high-competency people to match companies' needs.
"High- and mid-level employment will gradually increase in the next five years, mostly in the aerospace and aviation industry, for which the government is promoting Thailand as the production and service hub of Southeast Asia," Mrs Natiya said. "Experienced pilots and technicians for the aviation maintenance and repair positions are the most in demand to serve international airlines, establishing their business presence in the EEC."
She said Asia-Pacific is the region that will see a large increase in the volume of travellers around the world, so this factor is driving the expansion of airline business.
In Thailand, the sector is mainly spurred by rising demand for low-cost carriers.
The government is promoting the U-tapao aviation city and a maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) centre. As a result, high- and mid-level employees are urgently needed.
The EEC is helping Thailand meet expectations for technology and innovation in many sectors -- digital, logistics, e-commerce, robotics -- and demanding high-competency labourers.
"The targeted industries are requiring further experts in digital skills that can be placed in every sector," Mrs Natiya said.
Robert Walters forecasts the salaries of high- and mid-level workers in the EEC provinces to reach 100,000-300,000 baht per month.
The high- and mid-level workforce will need to fill 400 positions in Bangkok and 50 positions in Chachoengsao, Chon Buri and Rayong, the corridor's provinces.
"Some 95% of employers require Thai nationals, while the remaining 5% can hire foreign workers," Mrs Natiya said.
According to the EEC Office, 475,647 employees will be hired in the next five years to serve full implementation of the EEC.
Of those workers, a vocational degree is sufficient for 253,114 jobs, followed by 213,943 jobs at the bachelor level and 8,617 jobs at the master level or higher.