CHIANG RAI – Deputy Prime Minister Pridiyathorn Devakula asserted Friday that the Bt40 billion cash injection by the government for rice farmers nationwide, considered as Thailand’s economic backbone, is aimed at stimulating the local economy and says it “isn’t a populist policy.”
He told journalists that the money to be given to poor rice farmers at Bt1,000 per rai is aimed at boosting local economy which is now sluggish.
Mr Pridiyathorn, who oversees Thailand’s economic affairs, said the cash injection is calculated from the current domestic rice price at Bt8,200 per tonne and with the government aid of another Bt1,000 a tonne, rice farmers would receive more income.
The interim government of Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha has given the green light to inject Bt40 billion to assist rice farmers, aimed at boosting the domestic economy for the next three months.
The stimulus package was implemented Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Tourism and Sports Minister Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul said she was confident that she could make tourism and sport activities a “main economic pillar for the country” although a number of other countries have announced the same strategy.
Ms Kobkarn said while presiding at the ministry’s 12th anniversary that it has targeted Thailand to earn Bt2.2 trillion from tourism in 2015.