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Somkid in China to woo investments from start-ups

Jun 26. 2016
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By Suchat Sritama
The Nation

Thailand is encouraging China’s start-up companies to invest in Thailand.
Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak will be talking to the private sector in Beijing and Shanghai on a five-day trip that began yesterday to seek more investment. 
Somkid will be talking to 8-10 start-up companies to invest in Thailand as part of their overseas expansion. The Office of the Board of Investment will be following up on the investments, offering special incentives and privileges. 
Somkid is also scheduled to meet more than 300 Chinese investors on Wednesday at an investment conference entitled “Thailand: Moving Forward to Sustainable Growth”. 
The event is set to pinpoint investment opportunities, especially in information and communications technology, automobiles, electronics parts, tourism sector, telecommunications equipment, and machinery sectors. 
According to official statistics, from 2010-14, 172 investment projects worth Bt85.3 billion from China had been approved. Top areas of investment were machinery, automobiles, solar cells, and car assembly. Last year, the government approved 81 projects worth Bt28 billion, up from 40 projects in 2014. 
From January to April this year, 27 projects had already received approval, valued at Bt5.9 billion. 
This year, Thailand is targeting more investment from high-end products of natural rubber, machinery and parts, automobiles, train and tram, aviation maintenance, biotechnology, tourism activity and software park data centre. 
The Thai Ministry of Commerce said Thai investments in 2013 covered 37 projects, down 32 per cent from the earlier year, but the value jumped more than 500 per cent. In 2014, total investment value from Thailand declined by 87 per cent. From January to October last year, Thai investment in China was valued at about Bt1 billion mostly in retail, banking and finance, and aviation.


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