State vows raft of ways to lift economic growth

State vows raft of ways to lift economic growth

The government vows to rev up infrastructure development, investment in clean energy, electric vehicles and new targeted industries to lift economic growth.

Speaking on Wednesday at a forum entitled "Creating Thailand Desirable Future" organised by the Thailand Management Association, Deputy Prime Minister and Energy Minister Supattanapong Punmeechaow said the government has already laid down an ecosystem covering infrastructure development, investment in clean energy, electric vehicle (EV) promotion, and investment in research and development to boost economic growth next year.

In 2022, the government is also committed to pursuing a free trade agreement with the European Union and participating in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.

"The government pledges to implement 100 infrastructure projects worth 2 trillion baht next year, particularly those in the Eastern Economic Corridor [EEC] after investing in 160 development projects worth 1-2 trillion baht in the past six years," he said.

According to the Transport Ministry's report, the state infrastructure investment plan in 2022 is worth 1.491 billion baht, covering intercity motorways, double-track rails and mass transit systems.

Mr Supattanapong said many investment projects in clean energy including renewable energy such as solar power are scheduled to be implemented next year.

"Clean energy will play a key role in luring foreign investment in Thailand on electrical vehicles next year," he said. "The government itself is set to announce soon new policies and incentives to promote domestic EVs."

According to Mr Supattanapong, the government has also laid down infrastructure on digital development and supported R&D as well as offered tax incentives to attract investment and provided special locations for innovation such as the Eastern Economic Corridor of Innovation (EECi).

Mr Supattanapong said he also believed the government's plans for wealthy foreigners and highly-skilled professionals from overseas to work and stay in Thailand will help generate income next year.

The cabinet greenlighted on Sept 14 a stimulus and investment promotion package aimed at attracting wealthy foreigners and highly-skilled professionals from overseas to help revive the post-Covid-19 economy.

Benefits in the package include a 10-year visa for approved special visitors and their spouses and children.

The package also includes automatic work permits, the same income tax rate as citizens, tax exemption for income earned abroad and ownership of properties and land.

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