Ministry vows more stimulus on the way
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Ministry vows more stimulus on the way

The Finance Ministry is considering an updated version of the Vayupak Fund.
The Finance Ministry is considering an updated version of the Vayupak Fund.

Deputy Finance Minister Julapun Amornvivat says other stimulus measures will be introduced this year in addition to the digital wallet handout.

He said the government is considering other measures on top of the digital wallet scheme, which is scheduled to start in the fourth quarter.

More information about the new measures may be presented at the next economic cabinet meeting scheduled for next week, said Mr Julapun.

One effort aimed at lifting the economy involves the Finance Ministry studying the creation of a new fund resembling the Vayupak Fund, a previous state-controlled investment fund that focused on Thai shares with solid fundamentals.

The fund could be established as soon as the third quarter this year to attract money to the capital market, he said.

Investment units of the Vayupak Fund are categorised into two types. Type A is for the public with a value of 150 billion baht and a guaranteed return of 3% to unitholders.

Type B is owned by the Finance Ministry and state enterprises with a value of 350 billion baht.

In parallel, Mr Julapun said the conditions of Thailand ESG (environmental, social and governance) funds would be revised to raise tax incentives to a maximum of 300,000 baht, up from 100,000 baht, while the holding period would be shortened to five years from eight. This revision would cause the government to lose tax revenue of around 13 billion baht per year, but it would attract at least 40 billion baht to the capital market, he said.

According to the National Economic and Social Development Council, in the first quarter the Thai economy expanded by 1.5%, after growing 1.7% in last year's fourth quarter.

The Thai economy this year is projected to expand in a range of 2-3%, with an average of 2.5%.

In the first quarter of 2024, private consumption expenditure increased by 6.9%, after growing 7.4% in the previous quarter.

Total investment dropped by 4.2%, after recording a 0.4% dip in the previous quarter. Exports declined by 1%, compared with 4.6% growth in the previous quarter.

The manufacturing sector declined for a sixth consecutive quarter, falling by 3% in the first quarter of 2024.

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