FTI seeks incentives for South
The country's biggest industrial group will ask the government for a "wish list" of incentives to help businesses hard hit by the insurgency in the South.
The Federation of Thai Indus-tries (FTI) has drawn up a list of proposals to boost the ailing region. It will be submitted to the government next week. One request is for Bt20 billion in soft loans for businessmen and income-tax exemptions for government and private-sector employees in the region.
FTI chairman Santi Vilassakda-nont said following yesterday's FTI meeting the proposed tax exemption would include an income tax waiver for juristic persons that currently totals about Bt1 billion a year.
He said the government should control property-insurance premiums, too. Currently premiums in the South were 200-per-cent higher than the rest of the country.
Insurers were wary of the risk to businesses from violence in the region. "The rate is too high," Santi said. Insurance for factories in the deep South should be expanded from Bt50 million to Bt100 million, he said.
The FTI would also ask the government to exempt the region from social-security insurance for three years. Finally, the Board of Invest-ment would be asked to extend incentives for investors in the region for five years.
Santi said the State had to act to relieve the long-term suffering of business operators in the troubled region.
Premier Surayud Chulanont earlier said the government would provide special incentives for those who planned to start or expand businesses in the deep South.