“Guiding the Path of Economic Prosperity”

On Wednesday, Prime Ministerial candidate Pita Rimjaroenrat waved to supporters at a rally. The business community has requested that the new government take over leadership of economic ministries, particularly the Ministry of Finance to aid uninterrupted progress in the face of internal and external challenges. On Thursday, the MFP declared victory in the national elections and announced an eight-party coalition including the Pheu Thai Party, Prachachart Party, Thai San Thai Party, Seri Ruam Thai Party, Fair Party, Phalaang Sangkom Mai Party and Pheu Thai Party Ruam Phalaang Party. Both parties are working on guidelines for cooperation and a Memorandum of Understanding to address crises in national, political, economic and social arenas. The memorandum will be revealed on May 22nd.

The Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) is looking for a competent economic team and a coalition government that can work with state and private institutions. The MFP and Pheu Thai Party have their own advisory teams to implement economic policies. The FTI wants a coalition government that can work with them to put economic policy into action. There is a pledge to raise the minimum wage to 450 baht a day, and the MFP and Pheu Thai Party have both proposed raising it to 600 baht. The tripartite Wage Commission made up of employers, employees, and government representatives will work together to set an appropriate minimum wage.

Somchai Pakafaswiwat, an independent academic in economics and political science, said the finance minister position is an important post in government, and someone with knowledge of banking and finance should be appointed. He also thinks the new administration needs to improve Thailand’s agricultural sector. Jun Kuroda, director of the Japan External Trade Organization Bangkok, is hopeful for a positive relationship between Japan and Thailand with the election results. Krungsri Capital Securities (KCS) said the Pheu Thai Party is expected to take control of the new government’s economic policy by winning the deputy prime minister in charge of the economy and the post of commerce, transport, and energy, as well as the Ministry of Industry.

Chavinda Hanrathanakur, chief executive of Krungthai Asset Management and chairman of the Association of Investment Management Companies, stated that economic ministers are important and need special knowledge and experience to manage the economy amidst risks from outside of Thailand. Age doesn’t matter for the THA Tourism and Sports Ministers as the most important qualifications are independent of experience and age.

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