State vows continued effort on economic zones
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State vows continued effort on economic zones

The government has pledged to move ahead with new regional economic corridors and continuation of its promotion of 10 existing special economic zones (SEZs) in an effort to decentralise development and growth, as well as lure investment to the provinces.

Deputy government spokeswoman Traisuree Taisaranakul said yesterday following a meeting of the Special Economic Zone Policy Committee, chaired by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, the commitment to develop four new special economic corridors and promote the 10 existing SEZs remains on track.

"The four new corridors and 10 SEZs are regarded as vital tools to boost the economy in each region and decentralise income," said Ms Traisuree. "Apart from the provinces in those areas, the government also promises to develop infrastructure and create linkages to adjacent provinces."

The 10 SEZs are in the provinces of Tak, Sa Kaeo, Trat, Mukdahan, Songkhla, Nong Khai, Chiang Rai, Kanchanaburi, Nakhon Phanom and Narathiwat.

In May the committee approved four new corridors in a move to spur the economy and decentralise income to the regions. The new corridors comprise the Northern Economic Corridor (NEC), the Northeastern Economic Corridor (NEEC), the Central-Western Economic Corridor (CWEC), and the Southern Economic Corridor.

The NEC covers Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai, Lamphun and Lampang. It is designated as a production base for the creative economy, based on Lanna culture.

The NEEC spans the provinces of Khon Kaen, Udon Thani, Nakhon Ratchasima and Nong Khai. This corridor is expected to be a production base for the bio-economy and its supply chain because of the area's plentiful raw materials, such as rice, tapioca and sugar cane.

The CWEC covers Ayutthaya, Nakhon Pathom, Suphan Buri and Kanchanaburi. The corridor is expected to serve as a production base for agro-business, tourism and high technology.

The southern corridor covers the provinces of Chumphon, Ranong, Surat Thani and Nakhon Si Thammarat, creating an economic, trading and logistics centre for the region.

Ms Traisuree said the committee also approved measures covering tax and non-tax incentives, R&D in technology and innovation, human resource development plans and infrastructure development.

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