Monitoring Effects from the Eurozone Crisis and Pushing for Export-Growth Target of 15 Percent
- The Government Public Relations Department
- July 3, 2012
All relevant agencies have been urged to closely monitor effects of the eurozone debt crisis on the Thai economy and to work jointly in order to achieve the Government’s export-growth target of 15 percent in 2012.
Thailand’s export growth and the eurozone crisis were discussed at a workshop held on 30 June in Bangkok by the Ministry of Commerce.
Speaking at the workshop, Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra pointed out that the export industry had contributed greatly to the growth of the Thai economy, as it generates 200 billion US dollars in foreign currency each year. She said that the severe flooding in 2011, one of the worst in Thai history, had damaged several industrial plants, resulting in a decline in the country’s exports. Now that the situation is improving, she said, the country’s export sector is also facing problems from Europe’s economic situation, while Thai exports to the United States, another major market, are picking up slowly.
The Prime Minister stated that the Government was very concerned about the eurozone crisis, so it had set up working groups to closely monitor the situation. The groups comprise members from the Office of the National Economic and Social Development Board, the Ministry of Finance, and the Bank of Thailand. The Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister, Mr. Kittiratt Na-Ranong, holds a meeting with nine economic ministries each week to assess the situation.
Prime Minister Yingluck said that what the Government wants to know first are the direct and indirect impacts of the eurozone debt crisis on Thai entrepreneurs. The objective was to prepare both short-term and long-term measures to deal with the situation, so that Thai exports would continue to flow smoothly.
She said that the Ministry of Commerce and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs need to work closely in seeking new markets with good potential, such as those in ASEAN. Studies conducted in several countries indicate that Thai products have been recognized for their high quality. In this regard, manufacturers should add value to Thai products, making them competitive at all times.
Apart from trying to penetrate into emerging markets, she said, Thai exporters should also maintain traditional markets that have strong purchasing power. As for the Government, it would provide assistance for entrepreneurs, in terms of low-interest loans, access to various funding sources, tax incentives, and logistics.
Mr. Kittiratt, meanwhile, believed that Thailand’s economic growth in 2012 would be 7 percent, while exports would come to 15 percent, since vast opportunities still remain for the export business. In addition, Thai exports have become more diversified, which will enable the country to cope with the changing situation.
( Source : Foreign Office, The Government Public Relations Department / Monitoring Effects from the Eurozone Crisis and Pushing for Export-Growth Target of 15 Percent )