Thailand: Handout’s 2nd phase in the works

  • The second phase of the THB1,000 cash handout scheme will launch in 4Q19 in a bid to rev up economic growth momentum in the remaining months of 2019.
  • The scheme is poised to induce a turnaround of the economy during 4Q19, said Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak.
  • The tourism sector has to play a greater role in shoring up Thailand’s economic growth because exports have been reeling from the global economic slowdown and the domestic scene is still marred by political noise, Mr Somkid said.
  • For the second phase of the policy, he wants to include about 500,000 community stores nationwide in the scheme to induce more circulation of money in local communities.
  • The budget for the scheme’s second phase is not an issue, Mr Somkid said, as the Finance Ministry will ensure disbursement in accordance with fiscal discipline.
  • Finance Minister Uttama Savanayana said his ministry is considering the number of registrants for the scheme’s second phase.
  • The cash handout and rebate are part of a THB316bn stimulus package aimed at boosting economic growth to at least 3% in 2019.
  • The Fiscal Policy Office (FPO) recently estimated that 3 million people would use their own money for tourism and spending expenses worth a combined THB50bn.
  • Combined with THB10bn from e-money disbursed to 10 million registrants of the THB1,000 cash handout scheme, total monetary circulation in the economic system is projected at THB60bn, said FPO director-general Lavaron Sangsnit.
  • The amount will help boost GDP growth by 0.2-0.3%, according to FPO estimates.

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