By The Nation
Titus and other authority officials met Prayut prior to the Cabinet meeting to promote para-rubber products and related innovations under the theme “Rubber for Modern Living”.
Prayut viewed a display of products including a mask used as protection against harmful chemicals that cost Bt15,000 to make – Bt10,000 less than an imported equivalent. He was also shown a para-rubber “slash-guard”
handbag able to repel pickpockets’ knives.
The premier instructed the Agriculture Ministry to make a list of state agencies’ uses of rubber so that a budget could be allocated to help manufacturers meet domestic demand and promote the use of para-rubber across the country. Prayut said the government would resolve the problem of sliding rubber prices and seek the cooperation of other countries. He said the Commerce Ministry was trying to get China to use more Thai rubber.
“This is why Thailand must be friendly with all countries, such as China, which has ordered a lot of rubber from Thailand,” Prayut said. “Everything is regarded in terms of reciprocal moves that bring mutual benefit.”
The premier said the Natural Resources and Environment Ministry must meanwhile halt land-encroachment problems linked to rubber plantations, and the Agriculture Ministry must encourage farmers to switch from rubber to alternative crops such as fruit.
“I want rubber growers to grow high-value fruits too so their plantations will have diverse produces. The government will try to increase rubber demand within the country, such as in road building, futsal field construction or making army vehicle tyres,” he said.