The World Bank has said digital and disruptive technologies, along with the development of a circular economy, can earn Thailand up to US$3.4 billion each year in additional investments, savings and revenue.
The financial institution said in a statement that Thailand, a $544 billion economy before the pandemic hit, needs an innovation-led growth model. It added that the Kingdom needs to address existing foreign investment constraints in order to create better jobs and become a high-income nation.
The bank said adopting a circular economy, which involves producing, leasing, repairing, upgrading and recycling as much as possible, could generate as much as $1.6 billion of cost savings and additional revenue for the private sector, especially for agriculture, construction and electronics.
It added that an additional $1.8 billion a year could meanwhile be generated from accelerating use of digital technology, mostly from new investments and expansion of sectors where Thailand is well-positioned, such as e-commerce and fintech.
Finance Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith said, “With COVID-19, digital and disruptive technologies have been key in keeping businesses afloat.”
The tourism- and consumption-led economy, Southeast Asia’s second biggest after Indonesia, grew 1.6% in 2021, with the government predicting growth of 3.5-4.5% this year.
The World Bank added that strengthening structural reforms will boost businesses and promote investments in digital innovation and circular technology.