The Commerce Ministry is accelerating the implementation of the cross-border trade strategy, establishing four task forces to address border trade issues and aiming to increase the value of cross-border and transit trade to 2 trillion baht by 2027.
Speaking after the meeting of the trade, cross-border and transit trade promotion committee on Wednesday, Commerce Minister Phumtham Wechayachai said the panel agreed to set targets to increase cross-border and transit trade value to 2 trillion baht by 2027, focusing on collaboration among relevant agencies and the private sector, including the Customs Department, the Finance Ministry, the Immigration Bureau, the Interior Ministry and provincial governors.
Mr Phumtham said the meeting also agreed to establish four task forces to serve as a mechanism to drive various activities aimed at promoting and facilitating border trade and addressing obstacles related to trade and investment.
These task forces comprise a panel handling Thailand’s competitiveness to increase trade value, a panel for elevating export capabilities and facilitating convenience at border areas and in transportation and logistics, a panel for promoting and utilising benefits from various agreements and partnership frameworks, and a panel for promoting investment in border areas and neighbouring countries.
Furthermore, the meeting prescribed a strategic plan for promoting trade and investment along the border from 2024-27.
It includes elevating the existing checkpoints for border trade to permanent border checkpoints at three locations: the Singkhon border pass in Prachuap Khiri Khan, Huay Ton Nun in Mae Hong Son and Ban Sap Ta Ri in Chanthaburi.
Moreover, the meeting agreed to address the issue of delays in importing and exporting goods, particularly at the second Mae Sot border checkpoint in Tak. This checkpoint is currently undergoing the construction of an external X-ray inspection point.
According to the Commerce Ministry’s data, Thailand’s cross-border trade and transit trade value tallied 1.79 trillion baht in 2022, up 1.44% from the year before.
For the first 10 months of this year, the trade value amounted to 1.45 billion baht, down by 2.62% year-on-year.
Of the total, exports were valued at 825 million baht, down by 3.26% year-on-year, while the import value was 626 million baht, down by 1.75%.