The Export-Import Bank of Thailand (EXIM) and Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (NEXI) held a seminar for Japanese companies in Thailand on June 7 in Bangkok. With investment and business opportunities in the Mekong region in mind, the seminar introduced support schemes for third-country business investment and export transactions. In Thailand, business expansion outside of Thailand has become an urgent issue due to the shrinking working population and the increasing sophistication of the country's industries. Japanese companies in Thailand are also increasingly looking for third-country expansion based on their Thai bases, and EXIM and NEXI are cooperating to support such moves.
EXIM Chairman Pasoo Lohachun said, "In terms of economic growth in 2022, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos have high growth rates of 8.0%, 5.0%, and 2.3%, respectively. A very promising market," he stressed. Lac Borakhit Pogatone, President of the bank, also commented, "In addition to high growth, the Mekong region has a population of 250 million people. There is an abundance of high-performing labor. He pointed out that there are risks involved in business development, and emphasized that "NEXI and EXIM are cooperating to reduce risks for Japanese companies in Thailand when they expand their business to third countries.
NEXI President Atsuro Kuroda commented, "Over the past few years, risks surrounding companies have only increased, and we have moved from a just-in-time to a just-in-case situation. He called for the use of NEXI's insurance for exports, investments, and loans to Japanese headquarters, as well as the NEXI/EXIM reinsurance scheme for Japanese companies in Thailand, which was launched in 2009. As an example, he introduced the reinsurance for the investment in a gas-fired power generation project in Myanmar by Chugoku Electric Power, Shikoku Electric Power, and TTCL, a major Thai engineering company.
Junichiro Kuroda, head of JETRO's Bangkok office, commented, "In recent years, Japanese companies have been actively transferring part of their production to neighboring countries. This is a win-win situation for Thailand in terms of industrial advancement. JETRO, in cooperation with EXIM and NEXI, would like to encourage Japanese companies in Thailand to export and invest, strengthen supply chains in the region at large, and expand into third countries in new fields such as energy and start-ups," he said.
In a panel discussion on how Japan and Thailand can work together to expand business into Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam (CLV), Mr. Nalit Teethosathirasak, Director General of the Board of Investment of Thailand (BOI), said, "It is important not only to produce only in Thailand but also to promote division of labor in the supply chain according to the resources in each country. Thailand is the core base of the BOI. It is better to have production in the entire region, with Thailand as the core base, with certain processes in neighboring countries and finishing in Thailand, etc. Thailand needs to upgrade its industries. Thailand needs to upgrade its industries and should concentrate on more complex processes and new industries.
Ms. Alada Huangthong, Deputy Director General of the Department of International Trade Promotion (DITP) of the Thai Ministry of Commerce, said, "Thai products are reliable in the CLV market. Thai people and CLV people have similar skin types, and cosmetics, baby goods, and mother goods are popular. The expansion of the logistics network and the prosperity of e-commerce (EC) are also favorable factors," she said, introducing the advantages of exports from Thailand.