Economy A-team set to brainstorm

Economy A-team set to brainstorm

Centre to spearhead rehabilitation efforts

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha delivers a televised speech urging national unity and outlining various tasks the government will pursue including economic solutions on Aug 13. (TV Pool photo)
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha delivers a televised speech urging national unity and outlining various tasks the government will pursue including economic solutions on Aug 13. (TV Pool photo)

Plans to stimulate domestic consumption and private investment, curb rising unemployment and speed public investment are to be tabled for consultation at Wednesday's first meeting of the newly established economic situation administration centre.

The cabinet last Thursday gave the green light to establish a centre to handle the nation's economic rehabilitation from the coronavirus crisis.

The economic situation administration centre, tasked with working in the same manner as the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration, will be chaired by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha.

The centre will comprise 22 committees with representation from all economic ministers, the Interior and Labour ministries, the Bank of Thailand's governor and heads of three private-sector organisations.

The secretary-general of the National Economic and Social Development Council will be the centre's secretary.

The centre will take charge of proposing solutions to tackle economic problems and supervise the government's economic rehabilitation efforts.

The cabinet also approved setting up a committee to drive economic management. This panel will be chaired by Pailin Chuchotthaworn, an adviser to Gen Prayut and former deputy transport minister.

Rachada Dhanadirek, deputy government spokeswoman, said the cabinet on Tuesdayapproved a proposal of the Finance Ministry to amend the soft loan conditions for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to enable greater loan access and sustain jobs.

The amended measures, aiming to help SMEs and micro SMEs continue their business and retain employment, cover a special soft loan scheme.

The special soft loans worth 114.1 billion baht will be financed by state-owned banks and the central bank's current soft loan scheme, while the Thai Credit Guarantee Corporation will extend the loan guarantee worth 57 billion baht for eight years.

The cap for the overall non-performing loan coverage ratio for the scheme stays unchanged at 30%.

The central bank is offering 500 billion baht in soft loans at 0.01% interest to financial institutions for two years, to be lent in turn to SMEs with a maximum credit line of 500 million baht at 2% interest.

According to Ms Rachada, the cabinet also approved a 214-billion-baht borrowing plan for a revenue shortfall in the current fiscal year to September, due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.


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