Thailand-based companies see good opportunity in India and are looking to invest around USD three billion by 2020, Thai Trade Center’s executive director and consul, Suwimol Tilokruangchai said. “The fast growing Indian market remains attractive for Thai investors, given the opportunities in green and brownfield projects including energy, infrastructure and metals,” she said. “We are looking towards India with great interest over the last seven decades and plan to enhance the bilateral trade, thanks to the positive approach of both, the Thai and Indian governments,” she added.
Over the decades, nearly 30 Thai companies are active in the field of infrastructure, real estate, food processing, chemicals, hotel and hospitality sectors in India. Currently, Thai goods have benefited from the second FTA agreement with 10 members of the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) region with India. Thailand holds the second-largest economy in the region. Since Thailand too falls under the ASEAN group, Indian traders and importers can benefit from these FTAs, Suwimol added.
The Thai government has also invited Indian companies to investment in the growth of Thailand. At present, around 40 Indian companies have made an investment of around USD two billion in the areas of software, agri-chemicals and electric car development in Thailand. Leading Indian companies including Tata Motors (Thailand), Tata Steel Thailand, TCS, the Aditya Birla Group, Mahindra Satyam, Lupin, NIIT, Kirloskar Brothers, Punj Lloyd Group, Ashok Leyland, Jindal Group and Usha Siam Steel Industries, are active in Thailand.
Bilateral trade between the two countries has multiplied eight times since 2000, to reach USD 10 billion in 2017. Suggesting measures to be taken up by the government, Suwimol said “It is essential for both countries to encourage the private sectors, to make investments in infrastructure and manufacturing in each other’s countries. The two governments should provide a supportive environment and a predictable, encouraging and comprehensive legal and taxation framework. Similarly, more Special Economic Zones (SEZs) should be set up by governments of both the countries, to encourage more investment and to build better trade relationships,” she added.