INTERNATIONAL traders doing business with Thailand are confident they will continue to do |so because they have faith in the country’s economy despite this period of great national mourning over the King’s death, according to reports from Thai trade officials overseas.
Supapat Ongsangkoon, deputy director-general of the International Trade Promotion Department, said Thai trade |representatives in more than |60 overseas offices had reported that foreign traders’ belief in the country had not waned as they were confident in the government’s strategiesto drive economic growth.
Commerce Minister Apiradi Tantraporn has told Thai trade counsellors overseas to assure trading partners that it is business as usual, which also applied to upcoming international trade fairs that the Kingdom would host as well as other business activities, with events going ahead as scheduled.
From November 13-16, the ministry will stage a business-matching activity to introduce Thai tapioca and rice traders |to international buyers. Almost 200 foreign traders have so far committed to the event, Supapat said. Of those, 135 are rice traders, and 64 are tapioca traders.
Supapat said international buyers understood the current situation and reaffirmed that they would maintain their business plans for Thailand. Thai trade officials overseas have advised foreign businesspeople on how to dress when visiting Thailand to honour the late King.
Two international events set for next year in Thailand are the “Bangkok Gems and Jewellery Fair” in February, and “Thaifex: World of Food Asia” in May.
Meanwhile, the Business Development Department gave approval to 289 foreign companies to set up operations worth a total of Bt5.97 billion under the Foreign Business Act (FBA) during the first nine months of the year.
The number of approvals is 14 per cent lower than in the same period last year, while the value of initial capital investment decreased Bt7.03 billion, attributed to many businesses investing in financial-related businesses last year.
The department said permitting these companies to conduct service businesses in Thailand would encourage a technology transfer and create jobs for Thais.
Bangjongjitt Angsusingh, directorgeneral of the department, said many foreign investors were highly interested in establishing businesses in Thailand as part of their regional integration policies and the strong growth in the region and in the country.
“More investment will be seen in the remaining months of the year, as well as through next year.
The government will |try to facilitate more investment under economic stimulation policies and Asean integration, in particular special economic zones and 10 clusters investment,” she said.
In September alone, 17 companies were approved under the FBA, bringing Bt193 million in initial investment capital.
Bangjongjitt said the September approvals would create more than 98 new jobs for Thais. Most of the companies approved were susidiaries, agencies, retailers and wholesalers and mostly came from Japan, Singapore and Switzerland.