Supachai Panitchpakdi, former director-general of the World Trade Organization, is wary of investments in Thailand by e-commerce giant Alibaba, warning that it could lead to monopoly.
“The government should not make too many concessions by allowing them to do everything," he told reporters on the sidelines of “The Trade and Development Regional Forum 2017” hosted by the International Institute for Trade and Development.
His remarks come after the China-based Alibaba announced plans to invest in Thailand .
Supachai said Alibaba not only owns the e-commerce platform but also has its own logistics and payment platforms as well as Big Data of consumers and suppliers.
The government needs to monitor it closely, said Supachai, who was secretary- general of UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) from 2005-2014.
He also called for the WTO and UNCTAD to create a code of conduct for giant digital technology companies like Google, Facebook, Apple and Alibaba, who, he feared, could potentially control the world economy.
These companies have Big Data that no government can afford to have and they do many businesses that have created disruption globally and could become even more disruptive in years to come, he warned