Executives of leading Thai companies have welcomed the Commerce Ministry’s strategies to combat export problems and pursue export growth of 3 per cent this year.
The ministry has launched a so-called “Quick Win” strategy that includes picking the brains of Thai corporate leaders on how to increase exports to particular
regions they are familiar with.
At the first meeting of these “regional advisers” yesterday, representatives from eight companies agreed that Thailand could enjoy more trade growth this year under plans to drive exports of particular products to certain markets, while solving non-tariff barriers in seven regions targeted for exports this year.
Sanan Angubolkul, vice chairman of the Board of Trade of Thailand and co-chairman of the export promotion committee under the Pracha Rath project, said private enterprises were ready to cooperate with the government to solve export problems and boost the country’s trade growth.
“The ‘Quick Win’ plan will ensure that this year’s exports grow by 3 per cent, while private enterprises will also continue their cooperation to promote export growth to each region,” he said.
The 3-per-cent overall growth target of the Commerce Ministry is based on expanding exports to seven main markets as follows.
Exports to the United States are targeted to grow by 3 per cent this year from 1.8 per cent last year, to the European Union by 1 per cent (from 0.4 per cent), to Russia by 15 per cent, to Latin America by 3 per cent, to Asean by 2.8 per cent, to CLMV countries by 4.8 per cent, to China including Hong Kong, Japan and Taiwan by 3 per cent each, to South Asia by 1 per cent, and to Africa and the Middle East by 2 per cent. Exports to South Korea will be flat.
Sanan said that under the Quick Win plan for the CLMV markets, the government and private sectors would soon set up a sub-panel on solving logistics problems and negotiate the lowering of some non-tariff barriers to border trade.
Thiraphong Chansiri, president and CEO of Thai Union Group, as adviser on penetrating the US market, said the company would provide lists of retailers, wholesalers and food-service companies to the International Trade Promotion Department so it could draw up strategies to help other exporters.
He said that despite uncertainties surrounding President Donald Trump’s policies, the US market was still considered to have high potential market for Thai exports, particularly quality foods and innovative goods, as its economy is recovering.
The “regional adviser” strategy will hear from other private-sector executives specialising in each targeted region.
An executive from Siam Cement Group will give advice on penetrating the South Asia market. The CEO of Toyota Tsusho will suggest plans to push Thai exports to Africa and the Middle East.
The CEOs of Charoen Pokphand and Loxley will provide advice on promoting export growth to China, a representative from Saha Group is focusing on East Asia (Japan, South Korea and Taiwan), an executive from Berli Jucker on Asean markets, and an executive of Central Group will give advice on how to penetrate European markets.
Commerce Minister Apiradi Tantraporn said the cooperation with successful private enterprises would help increase exports to markets in which leading Thai companies have expertise and connections.She said that this year the ministry would emphasise many active plans for promoting stronger export growth.