Improve nation’s infrastructure, IP protection to lure investors: US-Asean council

Published: 19/03/2012 at 10:31 AM
Category: Business Organizations

Although Thailand’s environment and infrastructure are not bad for attracting and retaining foreign investors, they could be improved in terms of ensuring competitiveness after the Asean integration in the near future, said the president of the US-Asean Business Council.

Although Thailand's environment and infrastructure are not bad for attracting and retaining foreign investors, they could be improved in terms of ensuring competitiveness after the Asean integration in the near future, said the president of the US-Asean Business Council.

The Nation

In an exclusive interview with The Nation after he led 90 senior American executives from 34 leading companies on a mission to Bangkok last week, Alexander Feldman said the development of infrastructure, laws and intellectual-property protection, as well as joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), would help Thailand ensure significant growth compared to other Asean nations.

“The Asean Economic Community will really attract more investment to the region. Many American firms from various industries will invest significant capital in the country. If many things are better developed, Thailand, which is part of the Asean, will see greater investment,” he said.

Feldman pointed out that US industries interested in investing more in Thailand were mainly in hi-tech manufacturing and services, as the country’s development in such businesses is more advanced than in some other Asean member states.

For instance, Caterpillar will inject a significant budget to expand its plant for large-machinery production in Thailand. Other businesses that Americans are interested in here include insurance, property development, banks, information technology, and consulting.

According to the council, total US investment |in Asean is US$157 billion (Bt4.8 trillion), versus |$60 billion in China. US investment in Asean has tripled since 2000, and has grown by 25 per cent since 2008.

US investment in Thailand is $12.7 billion, third in Asean behind Singapore and Indonesia. Last year, bilateral trade between the United States and Thailand rose nearly 13 per cent, the strongest growth of the original five Asean nations.

The first priority for the Thai government …

Full story from The Nation at http://goo.gl/0N4li

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