Foreign investment up 56% in 2022
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Foreign investment up 56% in 2022

Pedestrians cross Asoke Montri Road near Terminal 21 shopping mall, Bangkok. (Photo: Varuth Hirunyatheb)
Pedestrians cross Asoke Montri Road near Terminal 21 shopping mall, Bangkok. (Photo: Varuth Hirunyatheb)

Foreign investment soared by 56% to 129 billion baht in value last year, with Japan topping the list in terms of budget to develop businesses in Thailand.

Japan's investment value tallied 39.5 billion baht, followed by China at 23.3 billion and Hong Kong at 18.2 billion, according to the Commerce Ministry.

Deputy Commerce Minister Sinit Lertkrai said on Friday that the Foreign Business Committee granted permission under the Foreign Business Act to a total of 583 investment applications in 2022, an increase of 2%.

The investment value in 2021 was 82.5 billion baht.

Foreign investments last year led to the employment of 5,253 local workers, a decrease of 4% from 2021.

Japanese business employees also ranked first in terms of their numbers, said the ministry.

There were 151 Japanese investors, accounting for 26% of the total foreign investors, followed by 98 investors from Singapore (17%) and 71 investors from the US (12%).

There were only 31 Chinese investors (5%), but their investment value was second to the Japanese.

The number of Hong Kong investors tallied 40, accounting for 7% of the total foreign investors.

Most investment proposals granted permission in 2022 were in line with the state goals of infrastructure development and targeted industries, including design-related businesses and the installation and inspection of energy storage systems for an integrated power plant project at U-tapao airport in Rayong.

The approved applications also include petroleum drilling in the Gulf of Thailand and construction work, including land reclamation, for the third-phase development of Map Ta Phut deep-sea port in Rayong.

Electric vehicle-related businesses as well as software and digital technology development were also among the approved applications.

Rayong, Chon Buri and Chachoengsao form the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC), which aims to be a high-tech industrial hub hosting targeted S-curve industries.

In 2022, there were 119 foreign investors, accounting for 20% of total investors, in the EEC. Their investment value was 52.8 billion baht, representing 41% of total investment.

Japan ranked first with the highest investment value of 24.7 billion baht, followed by China (11.4 billion) and Singapore (5 billion).

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