PM confident village development project will boost local incomes


BANGKOK, May 24 – Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra on Thursday launched a project to develop local communities–the so-called SML project (small-medium-large villages)–aimed at boosting income in local communities nationwide as well as the country’s overall economy.

She said implementation of such projects in the past helped foster local communities through funds directly allocated to villages of various sizes. So her government opted to continue the scheme, which will help strengthen and resolve economic problems at their root through work of community committees.

She asked community leaders to adhere to the sufficient economy philosophy of His Majesty the King in running the project, requiring a budget of Bt35 billion and targeting to strengthen 86,000 villages nationwide.

Today is the first day that the money was approved for villages with local committees already scrutinising proposed development projects.

Under the project, a large village will receive Bt500,000 while Bt400,000 and Bt300,000 will be allocated to medium and small villages respectively.  Eligible village committees with clear work plans and a bank account for money transfer from the state can get funding from the government.

The prime minister also talked to community leaders in four regions via teleconference about details of the scheme implementation.