Sign up | Log in



Home  >>   Daily News  >>   Thailand News  >>   Investment   >>   Foreign businessmen push reforms
NEWS UPDATES 12 July 2010

Foreign businessmen push reforms

Related Stories

February 11, 2010
Swedish firm to make solar cells in Thailand

January 29, 2010
Map Ta Phut Stalemate:
Japanese investors warns Thailand of relocation

January 15, 2010
Japan remains Thailand’s top investor in 2009

January 12, 2010
Thai central bank worries over Map Ta Phut impasse

Short-term reforms of the financial and telecom sectors and harmonising government economic policies are keys to maintaining the country's attractiveness to foreign investors, says the Joint Foreign Chamber of Commerce in Thailand. ‘‘‘Thailand has been very successful in opening up its manufacturing sector, but the service sector underperforms,’’ NANDOR VON DER LUEHE Chairman, Joint Foreign Chamber of Commerce, told the Bangkok Post.

Chairman Nandor von der Luehe said both local and foreign investors experienced difficulties doing business in the country.

The reforms should be made in conjunction with national reconciliation in order to properly address critical issues of political division and inequality within society, he said. "Inequality in Thailand even exists in the business and financial sectors," he said, pointing out that large companies enjoyed greater access to bank loans at lower interest than did small businesses and individual borrowers.

"There is a wide range of people and businesses looking for financial support. The banking and financial systems need to be overhauled."

In the short term, the government should look at structural reform in various sectors to improve services, such as auctioning off 3G mobile broadband licences in the telecom sector. Amendment of the Foreign Business Act should also be speeded up. "Thailand has been very successful in opening up its manufacturing sector, but the service sector underperforms. The service sector is a new engine that can give Thailand a competitive edge," said Mr von der Luehe.

"Right now, Thailand is at a very difficult stage. It's very important to gradually open up financial markets and the service sector."

Thailand ranked 12th out of 183 countries in the World Bank's most recent Ease of Doing Business survey, but Mr. von der Luehe said some areas still needed major improvement. "Different measures come out of different ministries without co-ordination," said Mr. von der Luehe. "We believe the BoI can play a superior role as a 'super investment body' in harmonising government policies, so that the Ease of Doing Business [ranking] will improve." Meanwhile, regional competition to attract foreign investment is intensifying. Malaysia, for example, now offers foreign retirees moving to the country a long-term visa that allows them to work 20 hours a week and own land, said Mr von der Luehe.

"Through this very interesting scheme, a neighbouring country can attract not only money, but also intelligence," he noted. "Economically, Thailand is very strong and attractive, but you cannot always rely on that. Thailand should look not only inward, but also outward." Mr. von der Luehe also expressed concern about national reconciliation. "Reconciliation is something we worry about. If any party does not take part, you cannot have reconciliation," he said.

"In a country that has a division between two big groups, if they don't talk to each other, how can the gap be overcome? Ideally, they should start talking to each other again and find ways to live together."

Meanwhile, the government should state clearly to the public why the state of emergency is continuing, as it definitely is hurting the tourism sector. "Safety and stability within the country is the priority, but we don't have enough information or reasons why the government keeps the state of emergency in place if things are going back to normal," he said.

The JFCCT is also waiting for a final resolution from the government of environmental and legal issues surrounding the Map Ta Phut issue, he added.

Reach Southeast Asia!
10- Nations, 560- Million Consumers
And $1 -Trillion Market
We are the Voice of Southeast Asia Media Kit
The only Media Dedicated to Southeast Asia Advertising Rates for Magazine
  Online Ad Rates

Comment on this Article. Send them to

Letters that do not contain full contact information cannot be published.
Letters become the property of AseanAffairs and may be republished in any format.
They typically run 150 words or less and may be edited
submit your comment in the box below




1.  Verifier

1. Verifier

For security purposes, we ask that you enter the security code that is shown in the graphic. Please enter the code exactly as it is shown in the graphic.
Your Code
Enter Code

Home | About Us | Contact Us | Special Feature | Features | News | Magazine | Events | TV | Press Release | Advertise With us

Our Products | Work with us | Terms of Use | Site Map | Privacy Policy | Refund Policy | Shipping/Delivery Policy | DISCLAIMER |

Version 5.0
Copyright © 2007-2015 TIME INTERNATIONAL MANAGEMENT ENTERPRISES CO., LTD. All rights reserved.
Bangkok, Thailand