Thai investors urged to invest in emerging markets

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BANGKOK, Oct 5 – Thailand’s Board of Investment (BoI) would like to encourage Thai businesspeople to invest in Myanmar, Vietnam and Indonesia during the next three to five years, while also looking to the emerging markets of Africa as interesting destinations, according to BoI Deputy Secretary General Vasana Mututanont.

Ms Vasana said Myanmar, Vietnam and Indonesia have bright prospects for investment.

Thai agro-industry conglomerate Charoen Pokphand Group (CP) has invested in Myanmar, she said, adding that Thailand is the second biggest investor in Myanmar after China.

Myanmar has become a prime investment target of Thai businesspeople. During the five years from 2007 to 2012 Thai companies have invested in Myanmar to a combined value of US$5.97 billion. Most Thai-invested industries are mining, petroleum exploration, fisheries, seafood and wholesale businesses.

She said that Myanmar is seeking foreign investment in agriculture-related business, food- processing industry and construction business.

Ms Vasana said the objectives of overseas investment far beyond the immediate neighbouring countries is to find new sources of resources or to avoid non-tariff trade barrier and cut labour costs.

Thai investors have also expanded their investment in India, Australia, South Africa and the Middle East, she said.

Apart from direct investment, Thai companies have also invested in the form of business takeovers in foreign countries which could facilitate the export of products to international markets.