PM holds discussions with US Secretary of Commerce, Export Council


March 15, 2024

Prime Minister and Finance Minister Srettha Thavisin on Thursday told US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo that the government aims to promote the USA as the leading investor in Thailand’s target industries, including clean energy, semiconductors, data centres, and electric vehicles.

Raimondo arrived in Thailand on Thursday accompanied by the US President’s Export Council chairman Mark Ein to discuss trade and investment policies and opportunities with the government and the private sector.

After a meeting at the Government House in Bangkok, Srettha told the press that he and the Secretary had discussed ways to strengthen strategic and economic partnerships between the two countries and at the regional level under the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF), which was launched by President Biden in 2022.

The two parties also discussed trade and investment opportunities in Thailand, especially in industries related to the Thailand Vision, including clean energy, semiconductors, data centres, electric vehicles, and digital economy.

Thailand Vision 2030 is an initiative drawn up by Srettha’s government to make the country the region’s industrial hub in eight sectors, namely tourism, wellness and medical, agriculture and food, aviation, regional logistics, future automotive manufacturing, digital economy, and finance.

Srettha expressed confidence that the government will be able to promote US investment in Thailand and make it the leading investment partner. It is currently ranked third. For her part, Raimondo said that American firms were ready to “supercharge” investments into the kingdom, but this effort will require cooperation from both public and private sectors in Thailand, the US, and members of the IPEF, she added.

Srettha followed up on the meeting by holding discussions with members of the President’s Export Council (PEC), which comprises executives from trade agencies and corporations who serve as advisors to the US President.

PEC chairman Mark Ein led 10 executives of leading corporations including Mastercard, Boston Consulting Group, Kearney, Coastal Construction Group, Carnegie Mellon University and EXIM Bank to meet with the Thai premier and discuss economic and investment cooperation in logistics infrastructure, supply chain, green energy transformation, and the BCG (bio, circular, green) economy.

Srettha said he once again proposed the government’s land bridge megaproject and Thailand Vision 2030 to US representatives, who showed interest in investing in electric vehicles, digital technology and artificial intelligence in Thailand. The establishment of a data centre in Thailand to support the government’s Cloud First Policy was also discussed.

Srettha said he assured Ein and the PEC that the Thai government will also continue to promote cooperation with the US outside the economic area, including tourism, human resource development, education, technology transfer as well as cooperation at the regional level.

The PEC’s mission to Thailand is a fact-finding visit to gather key information, which will be passed on to the US President. The results of the visit will also be reported to the US public.

Source: The Nation