11 billion baht spent on subsidised goods
published : 10 Nov 2020 at 18:21
writer: Wichit Chantanusornsiri
Total spending via the government’s co-payment scheme had reached 11 billion baht as of 12pm Nov 10, with a second round of registration set to allow 2.3 million more people to apply for the subsidy.
Of the 11 billion, the sum spent by registered individuals was valued at 5.6 billion baht, while the government subsidy totalled 5.4 billion. Average daily spending was logged at 212 baht per transaction, according to the Fiscal Policy Office (FPO).
Bangkok, Songkhla, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Surat Thani and Chiang Mai are the top five provinces for spending under the scheme.
More than 570,000 small shops have been participating in the co-payment scheme. Large chain stores are not allowed to participate because the government wants small merchants to reap the benefits.
The second round of registration for the co-payment scheme is scheduled for Nov 11 as some registrants are not expected to use up their subsidy allowance within the stipulated period.
The scheme's conditions stipulate spending by registrants must be completed within 14 days from the first day of registration.
The maximum of 10 million people registered for the co-payment scheme on Oct 29, but as of Nov 10, only 7.38 million had begun using the subsidy within 14 days of registration.
The co-payment scheme allows registered individuals who make purchases at small shops to pay only half the price, with the government subsidising the other 50% of the receipted amount.
The government pays for 50% of food, drink and general goods purchases of up to 150 baht per person per day, capped at 3,000 baht per person for the duration of the scheme.
The scheme started on Oct 23 and will end on Dec 31.
The objective is to stimulate consumer spending in the final quarter after sentiment was gutted by the pandemic.
It is expected that 60 billion baht will enter circulation from the scheme, according to the FPO.
Registration was launched on Oct 16. The scheme is part of the government's plan to offer 30 billion baht in cash handouts to 10 million people for purchases during the final quarter of the year, scaling back an earlier plan to give 45 billion baht to 15 million people.