FTI calls for fund to help develop country's SMEs

FTI calls for fund to help develop country's SMEs

The Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) has called on large companies and the government to support an "innovation fund", established to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) develop their businesses.

It expects the value of the fund to stand at 2 billion baht, with money to be provided equally by the government and large companies, said Supant Mongkolsuthree, acting chairman of the FTI.

"The fund is aimed specifically to help SMEs because they are a backbone of the Thai economy," he said.

"It will be also an economic tool to move forward the economy and improve various industries in the future."

The fund will provide financial support to SMEs and startups because many of them cannot access the state loan scheme, which requires them to go through lengthy and complicated processes.

The federation believes the fund will also support Thailand's bio, circular and green (BCG) economic development scheme, which is a national agenda.

BCG encourages manufacturers to adopt techniques that can add value to products and have no or minimal impact on the environment.

The scheme is also aimed to help farmers earn more revenue.

The government wants to use BCG as a key economic tool to support the domestic economy and help manufacturers improve and develop their products for export.

The FTI also supports the development of health and lifestyle products as they have the potential to drive the economy.

"We can further develop medical devices and services as well as new lifestyle products and promote them worldwide," said Mr Supant.

Tourism and service sectors, including Mice (meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions) events, should be also supported.

"Thailand as a destination of 'workation' [work and vacation] can become a new travelling trend amid the pandemic," said Mr Supant.

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