Outdated rules hinder creative economy progress
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Outdated rules hinder creative economy progress

Eliminating outdated rules and using advanced technologies to foster creativity and cultural assets are key to bolstering Thailand's soft power and ensuring its success, according to creative content pundits.

Asa Piwkhum, director of business and innovation development at the Creative Economy Agency, said the national soft power strategy committee meeting this week is expected to focus on shedding or amending regulations and laws that hinder the development of soft power.

In addition, the panel may revise a Culture Ministry draft relating to games ratings and censorship.

The committee is also expected to discuss the creation of combined festivals and activities across sectors, such as a combined winter and water festival, or a tourism and sports festival as a week-long or month-long event, said Mr Asa.

He said soft power can cover crafts, music, performances, visual art, films, broadcasting, printing, software, advertising, design, architecture, fashion, food, traditional medicine and cultural tourism.

Soft power will help promote Thai innovations and attract foreign talent to work in the country, said Mr Asa. These people may create startups and build an innovation ecosystem in Thailand, he said.

Thailand should also have a soft power venture capital system to invest in innovative cultural assets, raise creative industry standards and promote competition to produce innovations, said Mr Asa.

"Soft power can be a simple thing. One aspect that began decades ago is Thai Airways flight attendants wearing traditional costumes with smiling faces, showing respect by performing the wai," he said.

Among the challenges in creating successful soft power is raising awareness and understanding of the term, said Mr Asa.

Moreover, creativity and technology must be deployed together to build this power, he said, as technology plays a crucial role in the distribution of content to a mass audience.

Emerging technologies such as generative artificial intelligence can be used to increase the efficiency and productivity of creative work.

The government plans to set up the Thailand Creative Content Agency (Thacca) as a one-stop stop that can integrate all plans and budgets to develop an ecosystem of soft power industries.

Lak Taechawanchai, vice-president of the Digital Council of Thailand, said the country should have a soft power subcommittee to focus on specific areas.

Moreover, Thacca must be a nimble organisation that can implement ideas effectively, said Mr Lak.

Policymakers should consider the model of co-production of content to support the funding of good quality content, he said.

"China, South Korea and Japan have specific organisations to promote and build their digital content as soft power for their countries," said Mr Lak.

"Digital content can help promote Thai soft power. For example, Thai boxing and tourism destinations can be integrated into games, which will make the games more attractive to foreign players."

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