SUNDAY, February 25, 2024

Thai digital content industry seeks talent amid projected 44 billion baht growth

Thai digital content industry seeks talent amid projected 44 billion baht growth

Businesses in the digital content sector see a pressing need for talent, especially since the market is geared to generate over 44 billion baht in the next two years.

These sentiments were expressed in the Digital Economy Promotion Agency (depa) report on the country’s digital content economy unveiled earlier this week.

The report encapsulated a comprehensive data survey and evaluation, providing insights into the state of the Thai digital content industry last year, spanning games, animation, characters and a three-year trend projection.

The report was jointly produced by the depa, the Digital Content Association of Thailand (DCAT), the Thai Animation and Computer Graphics Association (TACGA), Thai Game Software Industry Association (TGA), Bangkok ACM SIGGRAPH and Atwise Consulting Co Ltd.

During a panel discussion last week, representatives from various business associations within the digital content domain urged the government to accelerate the development of skills among individuals specialising in Thai digital content creation.

“If this initiative is widely promoted, it has the potential to elevate Thailand’s soft power and catalyse economic growth,” they said.

The entrepreneurs also shared their thoughts on Thailand’s aspirations to establish itself as a dominant influence in soft power through the digital content sector, underscoring pivotal roles played by current lifestyles and digital technology in driving digital content expansion.

All parties agreed that Thailand already boasts a plethora of skilled professionals in digital content development, yet a desire remains for opportunities to elevate these skills to international standards.

“With comprehensive promotion, Thailand’s soft power can be harnessed to drive sustained economic growth,” they noted.

Kasititorn Pooparadai

Kasititorn Pooparadai, depa’s senior executive vice president of strategy and security, said the agency and its partners were fully prepared to champion the establishment of strategic directions and policies that align with the government's objectives for digital industry development, as outlined in the National Economic and Social Development Plan.

According to depa’s latest report, the overall digital content industry grew 4% in 2022 due to a contraction in the gaming sector.

The gaming industry plays a key role in the digital content industry, accounting for 85% of its total value, which stands at 40,518 million baht.

"This [gaming] potential exists not only in the creation of high-quality and innovative gaming experiences for players but also in the form of GameFi [Game Finance] and Game NFT [Non-Fungible Token] investment opportunities. These emerging trends are poised to attract players and entrepreneurs from other industries to the gaming sector," she said.

However, the report pinpointed a severe shortage of a skilled workforce resulting from the rapid advancement of new technology. Moreover, limitations in investment capital and access to funding for entrepreneurs continue to hinder progress in this sector.

Meanwhile, Thailand’s animation industry grew 15% last year, with its total value standing at 3.94 billion baht. Thailand serves as a significant source of contracts for animation, CG (computer graphics) and VFX (visual effects) projects.

According to the report, the country’s animation industry was valued at 2.61 billion baht as of 2022, demonstrating a consistent growth of 21% from 2020 to 2022. Thailand’s animation and CG/VFX industry is renowned for its strengths, including a talented workforce with exceptional technical and creative abilities.

The digital content industry is poised to grow further, hitting a total value of 44.98 billion baht by 2025.
Depa’s vice president Kasititorn expects this data to prove invaluable for business planning and adapting to the country’s changing internal and external circumstances.

"It will also help identify economic opportunities arising from emerging technologies by integrating the soft power concept within the context of the Thai digital content industry," she added.

She also pledged to collaborate with the private sector to devise projects and measures spanning from preparing youngsters to enter the industry, to enhancing entrepreneurs’ capabilities and expanding global market reach.