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Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin Strategizes for Economic Boost Amid Revenue Challenges

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The government is actively exploring avenues to boost state revenue as Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin maintains a positive outlook for the economy in the fourth quarter. On Wednesday, Mr. Srettha convened a high-level meeting with Finance Minister Pichai Chunhavajira, Deputy Finance Minister Julapun Amornvivat, and key officials from various revenue agencies, including the Excise Department, the Customs Department, and the Revenue Department, to strategize on revenue collection enhancement.

Before the meeting, Mr. Srettha emphasized the urgency of revisiting the government’s spending and revenue plans, given that it was already June. “Revenue collection is a critical issue,” he noted, underscoring that the Finance Ministry is also mulling over additional measures to jumpstart the economy. The prime minister pointed out that ministers responsible for economic affairs and various agencies are collaborating to invigorate the economy amid sluggish GDP growth.

Mr. Srettha conveyed his optimism about economic improvement in the fourth quarter, although the current focus is on stimulating growth in the third quarter. “The budget has been disbursed, and discussions are centered on ensuring it is expended as swiftly as possible,” he remarked.

The National Economic and Social Development Council (NESDC) had reported a surprising economic growth of just 1.5% year-on-year for the first quarter. The NESDC now projects GDP growth for the year to be between 2% and 3%, slightly down from a previous forecast of 2.2% to 3.2%. To put things into perspective, last year’s growth was clocked at 1.9%.

Pornchai Thiraveja, a spokesman for the Ministry of Finance, mentioned that the government had collected 1.38 trillion baht in revenue from October last year to April, falling short of its target by 2.7%, or 39.1 billion baht. Specifically, the Excise Department garnered 304.5 billion baht, trailing its target by 47 billion baht or 13.4%. Notably, however, this was an improvement of 27.5 billion baht compared to the same period the previous year.

Mr. Julapun attributed the shortfall to a slew of government measures aimed at alleviating the high cost of living. One significant blow to the Excise Department’s revenue was the reduction in fuel taxes, which resulted in a monthly loss of approximately 20 billion baht. After Wednesday’s meeting, finance permanent secretary Lavaron Sangsnit disclosed that the Finance Ministry had already put measures in place to counterbalance the below-target revenue collection. He also revealed plans to collect an additional 10 billion baht in revenue, though specifics on the sources were not provided.

With concerted efforts and strategic planning, the government remains hopeful that the financial landscape will brighten, promising a more robust economic performance in the near future. The combined ingenuity of the prime minister and finance officials might just be the key to navigating the financial doldrums and steering the nation towards economic prosperity.


  1. Larry D. June 5, 2024

    Another round of government promises and still no real change. When will we see actual results?

    • Samantha Jenkins June 5, 2024

      Larry, results take time. The government is addressing systematic issues, which can’t be fixed overnight. Give them a chance.

      • Jack June 5, 2024

        Samantha, we’ve given them enough chances. The numbers are still disappointing, and people are suffering.

      • Larry D. June 5, 2024

        Exactly, Jack. All we get is talk, but the economy keeps dragging. We need real action.

  2. Tom Riddle June 5, 2024

    It’s clear that Srettha is out of his depth. He’s trying to balance too many things at once.

    • Nancy June 5, 2024

      Tom, balancing the economy isn’t easy. I’d like to see you do better in his position.

      • EconWhiz93 June 5, 2024

        Nancy, Tom has a point. Leaders need to focus on key issues, not try to fix everything at once. Prioritization is key.

      • Tom Riddle June 5, 2024

        Exactly, EconWhiz93, spreading too thin only leads to half-baked solutions.

  3. Chris June 5, 2024

    The reduction in fuel taxes was necessary to alleviate citizens’ burdens. Short-term revenue loss was worth it.

    • Pauline June 5, 2024

      Chris, true, but how will we make up for the lost revenue? That’s a critical concern too.

    • Analyst_Alex June 5, 2024

      Pauline, history shows cutting fuel taxes doesn’t always yield long-term benefits. Government needs sustainable plans.

    • Chris June 5, 2024

      Pauline, I agree, but immediate relief was necessary. People were struggling.

  4. Tracy June 5, 2024

    These revenue targets are unrealistic given the current economic climate. The government should reassess its goals.

  5. James K. June 5, 2024

    It’s good to see that the government acknowledges its revenue shortfall. Recognizing the problem is the first step to fixing it.

    • Mia June 6, 2024

      James, recognizing problems is great, but action speaks louder. What’s the actual plan?

    • James K. June 6, 2024

      Mia, from what I understand, they are working on measures. It’ll be clearer in the upcoming weeks.

  6. SmartCookie June 5, 2024

    Why didn’t they foresee the revenue drop from the fuel tax cut? Doesn’t sound like very sound financial planning.

  7. Billy June 6, 2024

    I don’t see how raising taxes could possibly help the economy. People are already stretched thin!

  8. GGallagher June 6, 2024

    They should focus on fostering business growth instead of taxing everyone more!

  9. Amanda June 6, 2024

    Why can’t GDP growth projections ever be accurate? It’s always lower than expected.

    • David King June 6, 2024

      Amanda, GDP projections are just that—projections. The economy is affected by too many variables to always get it right.

    • Amanda June 6, 2024

      David King, I get that, but year after year it’s down. There should be better forecasting because struggling citizens pay the price.

  10. Arthur M. June 6, 2024

    The coordination between various departments is crucial. Hopefully, it leads to better results this time.

  11. Kathy June 6, 2024

    Isn’t it better to have a small deficit now if it means long-term growth? The cuts to fuel taxes and other measures were needed.

  12. JSmith June 6, 2024

    At least they are trying to be transparent. We can criticize, but at least now we know what’s going wrong.

    • Eugene June 6, 2024

      JSmith, transparency is good, but we need results too. Both are important.

    • JSmith June 6, 2024

      Of course, Eugene. But without visibility, we can’t hold anyone accountable.

  13. Derek June 6, 2024

    Stimulatory measures need to be carefully designed. Throwing money around won’t fix structural problems.

  14. BudgetBetty June 6, 2024

    The government should focus on making departments more efficient rather than always looking to increase taxes.

  15. Pat June 6, 2024

    How come we haven’t explored alternative revenue streams like tech industry growth or tourism?

  16. Lucas Tan June 6, 2024

    Just looking at the numbers doesn’t solve the problem. We need qualitative solutions, not just quantitative ones.

    • Clark Kent June 6, 2024

      Lucas, that’s spot on. Understanding the root causes is vital for lasting solutions.

    • Lucas Tan June 6, 2024

      Exactly, Clark. Until we solve the underlying issues, hitting revenue targets will always be a challenge.

  17. Sophie June 6, 2024

    Are the current measures sustainable, though? We need to think long term, not just react to immediate problems.

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