Exim Thailand launches workshop to encourage more exports by Thai businesses
Thailand's Export-Import Bank of Thailand (Exim Thailand) is collaborating with four leading private organisations to launch “TOP X”, an intensive workshop programme, aimed at educating entrepreneurs on exports and developing enterprising businesses.
The programme is part of an effort to promote and assist Thai businesses, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), in exporting their goods and services.
The four partners are the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI), Thai National Shippers' Council (TNSC), Thai Chamber of Commerce, and Mahidol University's College of Management (CMMU).
Rak Vorkitpokatorn, president of Exim Thailand, stated at a press conference on Tuesday that the country currently has nearly six million entrepreneurs. However, even though they have the potential to compete in the international market, less than half of them export. The figure is even worse for SMEs, where only one per cent export.
"The problem is fear and lack of knowledge. TOP X will eliminate those difficulties and strengthen them with all essential information and tools," Rak noted.
Thailand's Finance Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith presided over the event and delivered a keynote speech, emphasising the importance of Thai businesses expanding abroad.
Speaking on the topic of "Export Opportunity for the Next Normal”, Arkhom stated that current scenarios and uncertainties have forced Thai businesses to expand their trade outside of the country. It is because the global market is larger and provides more opportunities for growth. Many supportive policies and measures have already been implemented by the government.
FTI chairman Kriengkrai Thiennukul praised the programme for helping the country create a new generation of entrepreneurs while equipping the old with updated knowledge.
"This is a proactive workshop designed to train our entrepreneurs to be skilled exporters. The majority of our top 50 exporters are now multinational corporations. As a result, we must assist our entrepreneurs in competing. Meanwhile, if you own a small business, the programme will act as a facilitator to help you go abroad safely "Kriengkrai stated.
Visit Limlurcha, vice chairman of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, added that the main objective of the programme was to adjust Thai entrepreneurs' mindset about export.
"It is not difficult to export. They must overcome their apprehension. The programme will help them understand, expand their network, and provide experts to help them strengthen and sustain their business in the long run," Visti said.
Chaichan Charoensuk, chairman of TNSC, added that doing business in the nation is not enough. The programme will show the way forward with new technology and innovation.
Wichitta Raktham, Dean of CMMU who is directly responsible for overseeing the course, said the programme will educate participants on how to seize opportunities, inspire them to take action, and provide some funding to help them achieve their goals.
"We will close every gap that prevents them from exporting," Wichitta insisted.
The Top X Executive Programme Class 1 is a 10-week training and workshop course for business owners and executives of both large and small companies to develop and enhance export business knowledge throughout the export value chain.
The workshop includes on-site training with experienced experts as well as business trips both domestically and internationally.
The trainees will gain current and comprehensive knowledge, concepts, insights, and strategies on international business operation and management, as well as learn about relevant rules and regulations.
They will also broaden their experience through business trips, develop their business alliance networks, and expand their customer base through business matching deals.
Rak added that Exim Thailand will collaborate with Team Thailand to bring Thai entrepreneurs to the Next Normal global markets via both online and offline platforms, as well as the penetration of new frontiers, particularly the CLMV (Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Vietnam).
"We have now established our representative offices there. The bank will contribute to the development of an international trade and investment ecosystem that connects Thailand's economic, social, and environmental development and alliances, as well as add economic, social, and environmental value to the global community at large," Exim's president stated.
All 50 participants of this first class will be offered a credit facility from Exim Thailand, with the lowest interest rate of 4.5 per cent per annum in the first year, no asset collateral required, no front-end fee for an export insurance policy under Exim for Small Biz programme. The credit approval is within seven business days.
Rak concluded that in order to grow and thrive, Thai exporters, producers for exporters, and air-land-sea logistics service providers must step outside of their comfort zone. Exim and its partners will act as facilitators to ensure their survival and success.