PM urges parties to aim for 15% growth for Thai exports


BANGKOK, June 30 – Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra on Saturday urged relevant parties to boost Thai exports to grow by 15 percent this year.

As chairperson of a meeting on Thai export strategy with economic ministers and related parties, the premier said her government is ready to fully support all sectors to achieve this goal, while economic meetings should be held more often in order to follow up on the Eurozone debt crisis situation and tackle problems immediately.

Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Kittiratt Na-Ranong that same day spoke on the premier’s weekly televised programme “Yingluck Government Meets the People,” assuring that the government already has measures in place to deal with Europe’s economic situation.

A stock market support fund will be set up in case the Thai stock market is disturbed by the crisis, but Mr Kittiratt believed it would not be strongly affected. He affirmed Thailand has a strong economic foundation, and there are sufficient foreign exchange reserves for liquidity in the system.

The minister was confident the Thai economy this year would grow 7 percent, while Thai exports will increase 15 percent, as targeted.

Regarding bank deposit insurance coverage of Bt50 million/account being reduced to Bt1 million/account, this was due to volatility in the global economy. Mr Kittirat said the measure will be reconsidered after three years as to whether the coverage would be Bt25 million/account or Bt1 million/account.

Meanwhile, Energy Minister Arak Chonlatanon said the government still needed an oil fund to monitor and support energy prices, despite a deficit of around Bt18.6 billion as of June 26.

He said the government will try to tackle the deficit problem within five months for stable energy price management and in order to reduce capital burden on entrepreneurs and the public.