Government, BOT working closely to create cashless society
The government and the Bank of Thailand (BOT) are successfully moving the country towards a cashless society and digital economy, government deputy spokeswoman Ratchada Thanadirek said.
Ratchada said on Monday that the government and the BOT have a significant role to play in this transition with 89 per cent of domestic consumers opting for cashless payments.
The government, the BOT, financial institutions, and the private sector are cooperating to help people in every group access online financial transactions and services, such as e-commerce and digital banking, while preventing cybercrime. They aim to draft a law for economic platforms to regulate business operations.
Ratchada said the BOT and commercial banks are building on PromptPay service to be widely beneficial in transferring money and payment between countries, especially neighbouring countries in Asean under the concept "Asean Payment Connectivity", as Thailand has been connected with a lot of foreign workers and tourists.
She said the BOT is supporting several services to connect to nearby countries which are:
- Transferring money with QR Payment to foreign countries, including Japan, Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Cambodia, which will be available this year.
- Transferring money with mobile phone numbers between Thailand and Singapore; the service will expand to more countries in the future to increase the number of users.
She said the government has successfully developed several projects, such as:
- The state welfare card project, as the government subsidises 14 million people with low income and vulnerable people such as elders or disabled people to purchase products from 20,000 blue flag (Thong Fah) shops and participating stores.
- PromptPay and QR Payment project, to support electronic payment with Any ID (mobile phone or ID number) without a fee. It will be expanded to tax payment and e-donations to help with tax deduction.
- Government Wallet (G-Wallet) and Money Bag (Thung Ngern) application, for 50 million users to pay under “Khon La Khrueng” (Let's Go Halves), “Rao Tiew Duay Kan” (We Travel Together), and Chim-Shop-Chai (Eat-Shop-Spend) schemes, with ‘Paotang’ applications to pay small and medium enterprise stores.
- Applying blockchain technology for VAT tax refunds for tourists, and issuing government bonds to increase the efficiency of tax collection
- Digital lotto sale via the Paotang application, selling over 4.4 million lottery tickets within three days.
In addition, the government is utilising big data and registration with an authentication system for several projects, such as connecting the digital health platform with the National Health Security Office’s health insurance system via the Paotang application, to deliver medicine and antigen test kits from pharmacies and service units.
She said Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has prioritised the transition to the digital economy and cashless society. The government is pushing several aspects, especially reforming the bureaucracy.