Easing pandemic pain among the poor

  Somchai Jitsuchon The second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic that started December last year has sparked a new round of public concerns about increasing health risks and severe social and economic repercussions. This new outbreak, however, is different from when the first wave hit Thailand last year. This time around, the number of infected people is […]

Low-income baby grants scheme needs fine-tuning

Chayathorn Termariyabuit In its attempt to eradicate poverty from Thailand, the Prayut Chano-cha government has come up with a number of aid schemes for the poor. One of them is the child support grant – a programme that provides a subsidy as basic welfare for newborn babies from poor families or households considered at risk […]

Flood-hit firms wary of more diaster

 ERICH PARPART TWENTY-TWO percent of the 84 manufacturers operating in seven industrial estates in the lower Chao Phraya River basin that were affected by the flood disaster of 2011 believe there will be another major inundation within the next 15 years, a survey by the Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI) has found. Most if not […]

Rural jobs creation ‘boost economy’

Countryside remains stagnant, says TDRI The government should implement stimulus measures to boost the lacklustre economic recovery through job creation in rural areas by repairing small-scale infrastructure, says the Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI). Somchai Jitsuchon, research director for inclusive development, said repairs of infrastructure such as weirs and water reservoirs could create jobs in […]

TDRI suggests following the service path to grow Thai economy

Thailand should focus on developing its service industry and strengthening the public sector to hasten its escape from the middle-income trap and upgrade to a high-income country in 14 years, says the Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI). Thailand’s service industry should shift from a labour-intensive system to a skill- and knowledge-based structure to enhance productivity, […]

Tax base needs restructuring, meet hears

‘But extra income must be redistributed to benefit the poor’ Reform of the country’s tax structure should concentrate on increasing the tax base in order to generate more public income. Lawmakers, however, should come up with measures to ensure the government redistributes that extra revenue as a means of lowering inequality, according to the Thailand […]

Specialise ‘to avoid middle-income trap’

Panel: Economy too diversified to prosper Thailand must specialise in either manufacturing or the service sector if it wants to escape the middle-income trap, says the Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI). “Developing the economy to move past the middle-income trap could go in either of those directions but it must be based on investment in […]

The Nation Report: TDRI pushes a “negative tax system”

The Thailand Development Research Institute says it has proposed a way to reduce inequality using a negative tax system that compensates those on low incomes based on the poverty line set by the Fiscal Policy Office. The system also facilitates more efficient tax collection in the long run, it said. TDRI research director Somchai Jitsuchon […]

Bangkok Post Report: Money for the poor

Analysis: Negative income tax hopes to succeed where other social aid schemes have failed Developing countries by definition face a constant struggle against the problems of poverty and income inequality. Thailand is no exception. Over the past few decades, despite steady economic growth and industrialisation, inequality has remained a persistent and divisive factor within Thai […]

Proper budget scrutiny will keep parliament in check

Somchai Jitsuchon There has been a lot of talk about various kinds of national reform, even before the call for “reform before election” by the People’s Democratic Reform Council. The military junta also promises to set up a “reform council” that is supposed to gather and sort out reform proposals. I also want to get […]

Too far off to think about?

At a recent conference jointly hosted by the World Bank and the Thailand Development Research Institute, Somchai Jitsuchon, TDRI director of research into inclusive development, complained that while Malaysia had announced its vision to become a developed nation by 2020, we had not been hearing such a long-term vision from Thai politicians. Somchai said Thailand needed […]

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