Improve Thailand’s economy to prevent ‘brain drain’, warns Thaksin


Young people can only be stopped from shifting overseas if the economy in their country is strong, former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra said in a Clubhouse comment on Tuesday.

A group last week set up the “Yai Pratet Kan Ter” (Let’s Leave the Country) Facebook page to protest against the political and economic situation in Thailand. It almost immediately won over half a million followers, with many sharing their experience in living overseas and providing advice on leaving Thailand.

In his comments on Clubhouse, Thaksin said most of the over 700,000 followers are aged between 25 and 35, pointing out that many Thais are living illegally overseas to escape the situation at home.

“Everyone is struggling for a better future. Information is easier to find now, and it is clearer to see that Thailand does not offer them a bright future,” he said.

Thaksin also said there are better opportunities overseas as many countries require young people because their population is ageing. Hence, he said, nobody should be blamed for kicking off the “Yai Pratet Kan Ter” trend. Instead, the economy should be improved for the future of the younger generation.

“Thailand’s GDP is low and new graduates are jobless. The GDP should grow at least 4.5 to 5 per cent to create jobs,” he said.

When asked what should be done in response to the “leave the country” call, Thaksin said this would not have happened if he were prime minister.