Hong Kong Investors Assured of Thailand’s Economic Stability
- The Government Public Relations Department, Office of the Prime Minister
- February 27, 2013
Prime Minister Yinluck Shinawatra has assured Hong Kong investors of Thailand’s economic stability, which is favorable to the investment situation.
The Prime Minister paid a courtesy call on Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying and met the business community during her visit to Hong Kong on 26 February 2013 to encourage more investors to invest in Thailand.
She said that the Thai economy in 2012 grew by 6.4 percent, an increase of 0.1 percent over the previous year. As for 2013, Thailand’s economic growth is expected to stand at 5-6 percent. The country’s unemployment rate is low, at only 0.4 percent, while inflation is manageable, at 3 percent.
Thailand’s public debt accounts for 43.5 percent of GDP. Its national budget has been set at more than two trillion baht, accounting for 17 percent of GDP. The Government plans to have a balanced budget within 2017.
Prime Minister Yingluck stated that the Thai government has a policy to promote foreign direct investment, especially in high technology and environmentally friendly industries. She pointed out that the Government would invest 2.2 trillion baht in major infrastructure projects in the next seven years. This would help cut production costs, distribute wealth, and promote connectivity with neighboring countries and the region. Another 350 billion baht would be spent on investment in water management to protect industries and economic zones from flooding.
Among other interesting projects is the construction of a high-speed train system, linking Bangkok with the North, the Northeast, the West, and the South. The Government would expand Suvarnabhumi International Airport to accommodate the growing number of passengers. It also plans to build a motorway from Bangkok to the Thai-Myanmar border, connecting with the Dawei deep- sea port in Myanmar.
Prime Minister Yingluck and the Hong Kong Chief Executive also witnessed the signing of the Cooperation Arrangement between Thailand and Hong Kong on Strengthening Trade and Economic Relations. Since Hong Kong is a major market for Thai rice, Thailand urged Hong Kong to cooperate in trade promotion for Thai rice.
Speaking to Hong Kong tourism operators, the Prime Minister told them that Thailand was exploring new tourism destinations, expanding airports, and developing new transportation routes to facilitate travel and offer more alternatives.
Moreover, she said, Thailand is developing itself into a medical tourism hub in this region. The Government attaches great importance to security and safety for tourists and is ready to cooperate with Hong Kong’s tourism industry in the form of “strategic partnership.”
Today, Hong Kong is Thailand’s ninth-largest trading partner. Trade between Thailand and Hong Kong in 2012 amounted to 14 billion US dollars. Hong Kong is also the second largest group of investors in Thailand after Japan.
(Source : Foreign Office, The Government Public Relations Department, Office of the Prime Minister / Hong Kong Investors Assured of Thailand’s Economic Stability)