The National Council for Peace and Order has agreed to seek investment promotion for the private sector the Chairman of the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) announced recently. He said that the NCPO has accepted the private sector’s proposal on a cross border economic zone. This has boosted confidence in investors to continue their ground breaking projects. However, budget approval through the Board of Investment (BOI) needs to be further discussed.

The President of the Tourism Council of Thailand said that the discussion will have a positive impact on tourism. She expects a total number of 26.8 million foreign tourists this year but admits that the coup and subsequent curfew have had a temporary effect on tourists decision making, she has proposed to the NCPO that they change the curfew time in such popular tourist destinations as Phuket, Krabi, Phang-nga and Pattaya.

One of the long-standing controversies affecting the Thai government and the Thai economy has been ordered resolved by the NCPO, which has ordered immediate cash payments made to rice farmers who were promised set prices for their rice. The farmers turned the rice over and did not receive payment leaving many unable to purchase rice seed for the following season and leaving most in heavy debt. The private sector has vowed to advance loans to the government should the BAAC not have enough for the payments. Those farmers with documents started receiving their money immediately. All farmers are expected to receive the funds they have been owed by June.

The Kasikorn Thai Research Center reported that the political situation will ensure that the Stock Exchange of Thailand will remain volatile this week as the markets await the next moves of the military after taking over the government. However, gold prices are expected to remain stable as the President of the Thai Gold Traders Association said that the gold price principally adheres to the global gold price and that investors are well-acquainted with Thai politics and have learned to adapt to the situation. The baht is expected only weaken slightly and trade between 32.40-32.70 baht to the U.S. dollar.

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