“Sanan Angubolkul” becomes the 25th Chairman of the Thai Chamber of Commerce To continue the TCC mission, highlighting “Connect the Dots” policy to revitalize Thai economy within 99 days
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Mr. Sanan Angubolkul, new Chairman of the Thai Chamber of Commerce (TCC), said that TCC is going to organize the 55th General Meeting of the Thai Chamber of Commerce to elect new board members in place of the present board members whose terms in office have ended. Mr. Sanan has been entrusted to become the 25th TCC Chairman, succeeding Mr. Kalin Salasin, The new TCC committee has established the ‘Connect the Dots’ policy which makes TCC a focal point in connecting the public sector, private sector and general public, while also promoting sustainable economic growth of Thailand based on the current TCC guidelines. Even though the Thai economy may have bottomed out, numerous challenges still exist. The new TCC committee thus aims to ‘Revitalize the Thai Economy within 99 Days’ of its inception. Focus will be on restoring confidence in earnest, addressing short-term economic woes including unemployment and cash-strapped SME operators. At the same time, this will pave the way for sustainable growth and enhanced competitiveness of the country.
To quickly reinvigorate the economy amid limited resources, Thailand must prioritize the factors that will contribute the most to economic recovery. For the new TCC, pressing issues and challenges that must be tackled in a tangible manner within its first 99 days in office are as follows:
1) Expediting vaccinations for the general public in order to reopen the country The private sector is on hand to join forces with the government sector to achieve the target of mass vaccinations, which would in turn jumpstart the Thai economy.
Mr. Sanan said that vaccine rollouts and negotiations with other countries regarding a vaccine passport program are prerequisites for reopening the country. The private sector is on hand to do its part with its own expertise to support the government’s effort through vaccine procurement, importation, planning and survey on vaccination needs of member companies in order to ease the government’s burden. To ensure thorough distribution of vaccines, the private sector will facilitate the transportation, provide vaccination venues and refrigerators for storing vaccines, and organize PR campaigns while also ensuring sufficient personnel for handling this matter. Additionally, a “Buy 1 Give 1” policy has been proposed wherein companies would provide one dose of vaccine to their own employee and another dose to the general public.
2) Accelerating economic rehabilitation efforts via digital transformation in order to provide entrepreneurs easier access to funding sources
Ms. Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul, Vice Chairman of TCC, said that helping SMEs to cut costs and gain improved access to funding sources is one of TCC’s important goals during the first 99 days. TCC has therefore supported a new project with the aim of bolstering liquidity and expanding sales channels for SMEs. This project is a collaboration between a leading retail conglomerate and commercial banks. This leading retail conglomerate will have a duty to screen and provide data to SMEs customers who are its tenants, as well as being a supplier of commercial banks so as to help speed up the credit underwriting process and offer easier access to hundreds of thousands of SMEs nationwide. It is expected that this project will help pandemic-stricken SMEs to weather the complex crisis together.
Ms. Yol Phokasub, Director and Member of Executive Board of TCC, said that promoting domestic and inbound tourism is necessary, and TCC has plans to promote Thai products via the ‘Hug Thais’ project, which is aimed at encouraging the Thai public and private sector to use local products and travel within the country.
In response to the government’s Phuket reopening plan to be implemented on July 1, TCC has launched “Hug Thais Hug Phuket” – a pilot project to draw foreign travelers to visit and work in Phuket under the 'Long Stay' and 'Work from Home' models. Visitors would be entitled to multiple privileges and services from merchants when presenting their vaccine passport. TCC will encourage the government sector and private companies to use “Hug Thais” products, and propose that the government include the “Hug Thais” brand in its procurement system.
TCC is also going to propose that the government boost consumer spending further via economic stimulus programs focusing on high-income earners. Under the proposed scheme, the “Shop Dee Mee Kuen’ (“Shop and Payback”) program would be upgraded to “The More You Spend, The More You Get Paid”, which would allow high-income earners tax deductions of up to 100,000 Baht from the current 30,000 Baht. Additionally, the government should continuously spur domestic investment under fair trade standards to create a data linkage in order to advance the trade and service sectors, in particular e-commerce, and thus help Thai entrepreneurs.
3) Amending rules and regulations for the ease of doing business to help entrepreneurs, particularly SMEs, conduct businesses more conveniently. The TCC has participated as a member of the government’s economic reform committee, collaborating with other members like the Office of the National Economic and Social Development Council (NESDC), the Office of SMEs Promotion (OSMEP) and several ministries. The TCC has prioritized both projects and regulations that are in urgent need of amendment, thus fostering long-term growth in Thailand through significant structural adjustments.
Mr. Pratya Samalapa, Vice Chairman of the TCC, said that the adjustment that the TCC has proposed for adoption over the course of these 99 days include revising the immigration rules for skilled foreign workers; review, reduction or cancellation of licensing and fee collection to reduce expense burdens of operators who hold multiple licenses; as well as the improvement and development of laws concerning business groups like those in the Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) industry. The TCC will serve to connect public and private agencies so they may work as a team to propel Thailand towards the fast-changing global economy of the future.
Mr. Sanan is certain that all the three proposed initiatives can be achieved within 99 days. Under the “Connect the Dots” guidelines, TCC will serve as a focal point to connect all parties concerned and work towards the set target by restoring confidence, joining forces in building creative cooperation and committing to the set missions.
To gain access to various opinions and ideas, especially from the new generation for the nation’s overall development, Mr. Sanan said that TCC has added another communication channel by opening its own Clubhouse program, “'New Gen' Joins Forces with TCC in Revitalizing the Economy", with its launch scheduled for March 30 (Tuesday) at 8 p.m.
“The Thai Chamber of Commerce believes that every cloud has a silver lining. Going forward, we shall ‘connect the dots’ by holding consultations with all stakeholders, while working together to restore Thailand’s economic strength as quickly as possible”, concluded Mr. Sanan.
Source : M Report