By The Nation
Last year, the government gave people who qualified a one-time Bt3,000 payment.
Somchai Sujjapongse, Finance Ministry permanent secretary, said yesterday that the ministry would propose a Bt40-billion welfare package in the next few weeks to support low-income groups.
Eligible people will get financial support starting on October 1, he said.
The government will transfer money directly to people who hold cards making them eligible. The transfers will include Bt600 for train tickets and Bt1,000 for city bus rides, and the remainder for buying necessities at Commerce Ministry sponsored shops, known as Blue Flag shops, he said.
Every month cardholders will have to spend all the money, which cannot be rolled over for future months.
The estimated total monthly transfer for each government cardholder will be Bt2,750.
A person who is classified as low income earns less than Bt100,000 per annum.
The government will also offer more assistance to people who live under the poverty line or who earn less than Bt30,000 per year. There were about 4 million people eligible, Somchai said.
The government also plans to provide job training for low-income people and evaluate their income each month. If their earnings increase, they will lose the right to welfare funds.
A total of 14 million people are registered for state welfare.
Over past years, the government has increased budgets for the poor in many schemes. It pays more than Bt 2 billion annually for disabled people and has raised their income from Bt500 to Bt800 a month since 2015 fiscal year.
More than two millions low-income people who earn less than Bt100,000 per annum got a Bt1,200 to 1,500 monthly payment, an increase from Bt600 to Bt800 paid by previous governments.
The government also allocated Bt80-billion annually for 10 million elderly members of the population.