By THE NATION
Wiboonlasana Ruamraksa, permanent secretary of the ministry, said the wholesalers and retailers developed as role models by the Department of Business Development (DBD) would be asked to assist mom-and-pop shops in terms of management and modernising their image.
The focus will be on improving the shops’ attractiveness, cleanliness, convenience and comfort, she said.
“This will be an assistance project. It’s like an elder sister who takes care of a younger sister,” she said. “We will not let them struggle on their own. We have operators and associations [that can] help. Don’t fear changes. Changes are not easy but if there’s a change, we guarantee improvement.”
DBD director-general Banjongjitt Angsusingh said 132 businesses had been selected as role models and would be asked to act as mentors to show small retailers how to increase sales.
Initially, this project aims to helps strengthen about 5,000 mom-and-pop shops nationwide.The ministry also hopes to bring small retailers into the Thong Fah (Blue Flag) project, which sells products at prices around 15-20 per cent below market. The project aims to raise small retailers’ incomes while lower the cost of living.