In a recent announcement, Chanin Rungthanakiat, the deputy secretary-general to the Prime Minister, noted that Thailand’s economic resurgence was trailing compared to other nations in the Southeast Asian region. Serving a dual role, Chanin also voices his opinions as the deputy spokesperson for Pheu Thai. He firmly believes that his strategies have the potential to impressively push the nation towards the government’s set objective of witnessing a 5% economic growth during the current administrative tenure.
The deputy secretary-general believes that providing a specific handout to citizens could significantly escalate their buying power, fundamentally diminishing their living expenditure. Not only can this approach lower the cost of living, but it can also serve as an incentive to drive further investment intended to maintain an increased rate of consumption.
The Thai government is intent on drastically enhancing the economy to bring the nation out of what Chanin refers to as a ‘coma’. The severity of the situation calls for urgent measures, adding a sense of immediacy to the planned strategies.
While the question of sourcing funding and the potential impact of the handout inevitably arise, Chanin assures that the establishment of a committee to address these concerns is underway. The committee’s purpose is to derive valuable insights from the relevant authorities that could help manage and execute the proposed measures.
The digital wallet committee plays a pivotal role in overseeing the execution of the handout. Headed by Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin, the digital wallet committee is expected to address concerns and ensure the smooth functioning of the proposed handout system.
In a surprising turn of events, a group of 99 economists and university professors holding expertise in economics have issued a public statement condemning the government’s planned digital cash handout policy. They demand an outright cancellation of the scheme, arguing that it is ‘not worth the cost’. This digital wallet program could potentially cause a dent of up to 560 billion baht in the government’s treasury, as suggested by the Budget Bureau. Yet, it remains to be seen how the government will manage these concerns and what direction the economic recovery will take.