Liquidity support for hospitality firms underway

Liquidity support for hospitality firms underway

The Finance Ministry has promised to look into devising a measure to beef up liquidity for hard-hit hospitality businesses after meeting a private sector representative.

The Thai Chamber of Commerce (TCC) and the Board of Trade of Thailand submitted their proposal to the ministry yesterday to seek help for private businesses affected by the crisis.

The National Economic and Social Development Council is assessing possible measures to help ailing hospitality businesses, which have been suffering a liquidity crunch, said Finance Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith.

Many hotels have been unable to shoulder operational costs as the tourism industry has not recovered.

Thai authorities have eased restrictions in Chon Buri and Pattaya City, with more businesses allowed to resume normal operations tomorrow, including restaurants, pubs and bars.

Hotels in the province have been ordered closed -- at the request of the hard-hit industry so employers and workers can officially qualify for state financial assistance.

Mr Arkhom said the ministry has implemented indirect measures to help shore up liquidity among businesses and people such as extending payments for personal income tax and corporate income tax to June 30.

The ministry has also reduced tax liability for those liable for the land and building tax by 90% and waived transfer and mortgage fees by 0.01%, he said.

The ministry is considering the private sector's proposal to fund the TAGTHAi application, a local app used for accommodation bookings.

Kalin Sarasin, chairman of the TCC, said the private sector representative submitted several proposals to the ministry yesterday, such as rolling out steps to support private businesses to safeguard against outbreaks through tax deduction incentives or subsidising vaccinations for migrant workers.

The private sector urged officials to considering annulling the loan-to-value (LTV) regulations for the property sector in a bid to provide people with sufficient purchasing power to buy properties for investment at a greater ratio, said Mr Kalin.

The Bank of Thailand introduced LTV rules in April 2019 in order to prevent counterfeit demand for mortgage loans. The move also aims to standardise the overall housing loan business and initiate real demand from homebuyers, especially those seeking a first home.

According to the revised LTV regulations, homebuyers will need to make a minimum down payment for third and subsequent mortgages of 30% of the price, with second mortgages set at 10-20%, depending how long a borrower has made payments on the first.

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