Thursday, October 22, 2020

Prayut ready to listen to ideas from big businesses

Oct 01. 2020
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha
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By The Nation

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha will meet representatives of companies in the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) on Thursday to learn about progress in their project development as well as listen to ideas on how the zone can be further developed.

The meeting will take place at Laem Chabang, Energy Minister Supattanapong Punmeechaow said.

Present at the meeting will be representatives of some 16 major companies, including PTT, Amata Corporation, WHA Industrial Development and Mitsubishi Motors (Thailand).

Also attending will be some ministers, including Supattanapong, Deputy PM and Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul and Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob, the government's spokesman Anucha Burapachaisri said.

Targeting big earners

Meanwhile, Supattanapong said the Centre for Economic Situation Administration (CESA) will study new economic stimulus packages on October 7 to boost domestic consumption.

The new package will target the upper middle class who earn a high salary, such as encouraging them to co-pay for products and services, he added.

“They may get subsidies in the form of tax returns,” he said.

Energy Minister Supattanapong Punmeechaow

On September 29, the Cabinet gave the go-ahead to a three-month economic stimulus package in a bid to stimulate domestic consumption.

Under the Kon La Khreung (Let’s Go Halves) scheme, 10 million people will get daily discounts on their shopping of up to Bt150, capped at Bt3,000 per person. The scheme will open for merchants to register online from Thursday.

Under the second scheme, 14 million welfare cardholders will receive an extra monthly discount of Bt500 on their shopping from October 23 to December 31.

Supattanapong said he also wants to promote Bangkok as an international hub for major foreign companies by cashing on the capital’s strong infrastructure and competitive office rents and living cost.

He also wants to woo foreign investment in real estate.

On September 16, CESA approved in principle amendments to the criteria of granting permanent residence to foreigners in a bid to woo more investment.

The centre is considering the option of granting permanent residence to buyers of condominium units, provided applicants do not mortgage, sell or transfer this asset for five years after purchase.

Gradual recovery

Supattanapong said that Thailand’s economic indicators have improved. Thailand has effectively handled the outbreak and continues to launch measures to revive the sapping economy.

He is confident that the Thai economic growth will return to the pre-outbreak level within two years.

He said the key economic driver is the private sector investment and it is time for the private companies to stop fearing the Covid-19 outbreak.

He added that some private companies have continued to invest, because the interest rate is low and the price of construction materials is dropping.

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