US ready to invest more in Thailand


The United States is interested in investing more in Thailand via several business projects, particularly those related to the digital economy, a Government House meeting was told yesterday.

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha met representatives of 34 US firms from the US-Asean Business Council — the leading advocacy organisation for US businesses working in Southeast Asia.

Representatives of 34 renowned US companies attended the meeting, including Ford, Microsoft, Google, Coca-Cola and Chevron.

Speaking after the meeting yesterday, government spokesman Yongyuth Mayalarp said US investors expressed most interest in projects involving digital economy development pushed by the government.

The investors also met executives of the Information and Communication Technology Ministry to hear about government policy concerning the development.

In addition, Dr Yongyuth said investors are interested in energy and medical projects, as well as infrastructure projects, such as airport, bridge and deep-sea port construction.

Meanwhile, the prime minister asked US investors to inject more money into Thailand’s financial and property sectors.

Gen Prayut said the government is ready to support the US and other foreign investors in Thailand and protect their interests.

However, the government would make it clear to foreign investors that it was necessary to amend some rules and regulations concerning investments and international trade.

Some of the amended legislation must be forwarded to the National Legislative Assembly for endorsement, and some can be modified at the ministerial level, he said.

Business operators understand what the government is doing now and they are ready to ramp up their investments in Thailand, Gen Prayut said.

The government has laid out long-term foundations for investors to ensure their business interests are sustainable.

However, this support will be of equal benefit to Thailand and foreign investors.

Several regulations have been amended so far, including those concerning the Board of Investment, the premier said.

All ministries have been instructed to help boost research and development and enhance labour skills to comply with the education reform policy, he added.

Accountability is an essential part of all future investment, he said, affirming that the government has taken serious steps to eliminate graft since the May 22 military takeover.

Maj Gen Weerachon Sukontapatipak, a member of the government spokesman team, said the premier had drawn attention to a policy focusing on clean energy as well as one on investment as a means to create jobs for Thais, support domestic product use and facilitate small- and medium-sized enterprises.

The premier invited US business operators to jointly invest in the five special economic zones, he said.

Meanwhile, South Korean ambassador to Thailand Jeon Jae Man met Deputy Transport Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith yesterday to discuss Thailand’s standard-gauge dual-track railway project plans.

South Korea is interested in investing in the multi-billion baht rail scheme, Transport Minister Prajin Juntong said.




Source : Bangkok Post | November 4, 2014

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