BANGKOK – Prime Minister Prayut Cha-o-cha admitted he is worried by the projected economic slowdown next year, but still sees the possibility of Thailand regaining its former position as the world’s biggest rice exporter next year.
Gen Prayut said at Government House today that an economic downturn is possible next year, meaning that the purchasing power of other countries would be weaker.
He said his government is mobilizing economy-related organizations to cope with the anticipated economic slowdown and the export sector will have to be strengthened.
“If a few world powers have economic problems, the global economy will be affected seriously and the impacts will also reach Thailand,” the prime minister said.
Regarding its rice exports, Gen Prayut said that Thailand’s rice situation is good as the country is the biggest rice exporter of Asia.
Next year Thailand can become the world’s biggest rice exporter despite a decline in its rice yield.
Gen Prayut said his government asked farmers to limit their second rice crop but quality rice from the first crop could still serve export demand.
Commerce Minister Chatchai Sarikulya said the Ministry of Commerce and the Board of Trade of Thailand agreed to form four joint committees to plan international, internal and border trade strategies as well as local product distribution.
He said that the international trade strategy committee would promote Thai exports in new major markets such as emerging countries in Southeast Asia as well as China and India.
Thai stock index gains 7.98 points or 0.52% to close at 1,547.89, value Bt46,178 mln