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Saturday, June 22, 2024

SME exporters should prepare for a slowdown in imports and investments in Russia and Ukraine

The Office of SMEs Promotion (OSMEP) has urged small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to closely follow the economic repercussions of the ongoing
war between Russia and Ukraine and to adapt to new challenges.

OSMEP Director-General Veerapong Malai noted that Russia is one of Thailand’s major trading partners and a gateway to Eurasian countries.
He added that Russians contribute significantly to Thailand’s tourism industry.

According to the OSMEP, exports to Ukraine are meanwhile worth US$134.8 million annually, $15.1 million from SMEs.
OSSMEP reviews the strategic plan annually in response to rapidly changing external and internal factors.
The implementation aims to set a clear direction of OSMEP and meet the stakeholders’ expectations.
Furthermore, OSMEP has developed tools to achieve the corporate strategic plans effectively. The Plan
included four key strategies aligned with the national development direction under the guidelines of
the 20-year National Strategy Plan (2018 – 2037).

Strategy 1
Enhancing MSME data integration in Thailand with big data

Strategy 2
Developing a mechanism to promote access to MSMEs and local economy

Strategy 3
Enlarging and internationalizing an entrepreneurial society

Strategy 4
Driving the organization into a high-performance agency

The armed conflict between Russia and Ukraine has already impacted animal feed and crude oil prices, while raising operational costs across
nearly all sectors.

Veerapong said Russia and Ukraine are the 29th and 70th biggest importers of Thai SMEs products, respectively. Popular items include jewelry,
synthetic gemstones, fresh and processed fruit, rice and cereal, along with telecommunications equipment.

The director-general also suggested that SME exporters prepare for a slowdown in imports and investments in both Russia and Ukraine, due
to rising logistical expenses.
Additionally, they should brace for an inevitable shortage of raw materials in the agricultural sector and rising commodity prices.

Meanwhile More than 7,000 tourists from Russia and Ukraine in Thailand are allowed to extend their visas without an application fee as
the government is considering measures to offer humanitarian assistance to those affected by international flight cancellations.

Mirko Bennardo
Author: Mirko Bennardo

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