No foreign investors plan to withdraw investments from Thailand: BoI survey

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BANGKOK, Sept 2 – The Board of Investment (BoI) found no foreign investors planned to withdraw investment from Thailand, according to its survey of more than 400 companies.

Atchaka Sibunruang, Secretary-General of the Board of Investment (BoI), released the result of the survey on foreign investor confidence on Thailand 2011.

The survey was conducted by the BoI from February to June 2011 among 404 companies, including both firms which received BoI privileges and those that did not receive them.

According to the survey, 49.8 per cent of the investors surveyed plan to maintain the status quo, and 46.8 per cent aim to expand their businesses. However, 3.5 per cent of the businesses, such as textiles, jewellery and leatherwear, which face labour supply problems and raw material supplies will downsize their investment.

These groups of businesses hire migrant workers and are likely to encounter labour shortages and will gradually relocate to other countries, particularly Vietnam, China and India, where labour costs are cheaper.

The survey has not yet factored in the Thai government’s policy to raise the daily minimum wage to 300 baht. In the overall picture, Thailand’s wage structure can still compete with other countries in terms of skilled labour compensation.

Moreover, the banking system and access to financial sources as well as land use are better than those in many countries, except for the communication and logistics systems which still lag behind Malaysia as the Malaysian government considers it a higher priority.

However, the investment value of businesses granted BoI incentives this year will jump from Bt400 billion to Bt500 billion provided that foreign entrepreneurs view the investment environment as remaining positive.

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