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October 23, 2007

Finance minister to discuss capital flow
Thai Finance Minister Chalongphob Sussangkarn is set to unofficially discuss a plan to contain large-scale capital inflows and outflows in ASEAN with his counterparts this week.

A ministry source said the minister would attend an ASEAN investment and development 'road show' in New York on Tuesday after participating in the meeting of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank.

Thai officials believe it is perfect timing for combined investment promotion road shows by ASEAN, in order to attract foreign investors to invest directly and indirectly in all of the region's economies.
The source said Thailand will give priority to investments in the metropolitan Bangkok electric mass transit projects and joint investment with the private sector in other mega-projects.

The road show is expected to attract a number of new investors from around the world to make significant investments in the region.

In addition, the source said Dr. Chalongphob planned to hold discussions with his counterparts at the ASEAN plus 3 (Korea, Japan, and China) meeting before joining the ASEAN Road Show.

The main issues to be discussed include cooperation in containing foreign capital inflows and outflows arising from the imbalance of the global money market.

Previously, the minister said Thailand's present economic conditions are quite favourable and clearer than before.
He brushed aside concerns over the export slowdown due to the appreciation of the baht, saying that the Thai currency is not stronger than other currencies in the region.

He said the Bank of Thailand is able to manage the currency exchange rate efficiently and will continue to supervise it closely.

At the same time, state and private investment had increased and foreign funds had flowed into the Stock Exchange of Thailand on an ongoing basis. Such an atmosphere would make the Thai economy expand satisfactorily, he said. Courtesy TNA

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