By PETCHANET PRATRUANGKRAI
NEW COMPANY registrations set a two-year high last month, which the Commerce Ministry attributed to the government’s investment promotion measures and strong tourism growth.
New business registrations reached 6,176 in March – up 8 per cent year on year and 10 per cent from February.
Pongpun Gearaviriyapun, director-general of the Business Development Department, said yesterday that new enterprises were encouraged to set up by the government’s measures to promote investment, the special economic zones and healthy tourism growth.
The department’s measures to facilitate start-ups have also supported business formation. The expectation that gross domestic product could expand by 3.3 per cent this year has also spurred the establishment of more companies, she claimed.
The department expects about 60,000-65,000 companies to be born this year.
Some risks remain
In the first quarter of this year, new registered companies increased by 1 per cent from the same quarter last year to 17,523, but were up sharply by 35 per cent from the final quarter of 2015.
There are still some risks weighing on enterprises’ decision to expand, including the drought, sluggish exports and fluctuating oil prices, as those factors could erode purchasing power.
Initial investment capital last month surged 70 per cent year on year to Bt27.3 billion.
In the first quarter of this year, total initial investment increased 57 per cent year on year to Bt77.52 billion.
Last month saw 1,183 companies shutting down, up only 0.2 per cent from a year ago but 28 per cent from February.
In the first three months of this year, business closures dropped 3 per cent year on year to 3,574.
Most of the new companies are engaged in construction, property development, machinery wholesaling, restaurants and food retailing, and consulting.
More than 631,195 companies are actively operating in the country, of which 1,118 are public companies.