The central bank said that as of March 31, there were 2,365 registered money changers, down from 2,382 before the pandemic.
In 2018, the BOT reported a total of 2,260 money changers, up 112 over the previous year.
Total transactions in the money changing business in 2020 slumped by 60.66 per cent year on year, while transactions in 2018 had increased 3.74 per cent year on year.
Pol Colonel Sihanart Prayoonrat, president of the Thai Association of Foreign Exchange, said that the number of transactions at money changers could increase again after vaccinated foreign tourists were granted access to the country.
“Living and spending in Thailand still depends on cash, as credit cards or internet banking are not accepted everywhere,” he said.
“However, it is undeniable that the trend of electronic money is growing, which poses a huge disruption for the money changing business. Furthermore, during the outbreak more people tend to avoid holding cash due to fear of the virus spreading,” he added.
“The association is planning to enourage money changers to also offer electronic transaction services at their counters to keep their businesses afloat, which will also help prepare their customers for a cashless society.”
Published : April 16, 2021
By : THE NATION