Thailand – India Strategic Trade Partnership: Thai Deputy PM to Create Agri-Trade Supply Chain Alliance

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Mumbai, September 25, 2019: In order to expand business ties between Thailand and India, Honorable Deputy Prime Minister of Thailand and Minister of Commerce, Thailand, Mr H E Jurin Laksanawisit, today launched the Agri-Trade Supply Chain Alliance (ATSCHA) which would further ease the trade relations and increase trade commodity supply between the countries. 

Mr Laksanawisit was addressing the audience at the Thai Indo Business Networking (TIBN), a trade networking platform organised by The Department of International Trade Promotion and Ministry of Commerce, Thailand, held in Mumbai today. Mr Laksanawisit highlighted that India is one of the most important trade partners of Thailand and agri commodities is one of the important pillars for both economies. He said that creating ATSCHA is important as it would help in boosting the agri trade between the countries and their agri communities. 

Mr Laksanawisit said, “A trade war between the US and China is having adverse effect on global economy. It is India’s fortunate position as fundamentals of domestic economy is strong with over 1.3 bn population, so that the trade war will not have a significant impact on the economy. India has become an engine driving the global economic growth. This is a great opportunity for Thailand to explore and nurture trade partnerships and joint investments in the near future. Thailand is focusing on key agro products like Rubber, Rubber Wood, Tapioca Starch and Construction Materials, Logistics Services. ” He also interacted with several Indian industry associations and players during the event. 

Thailand signed MOUs between Association of Furniture Manufacturers & Traders, India and Thai Hevae Wood Association, Thailand-India Business Council and GlobalLinker to create an online platform for SMEs from both the countries.

India’s biggest online supermarket, bigbasket.com will be signing an MOU in November 2019 with the Thai Ministry of Commerce to promote Thai products through Thai flagship stores on its platform.

Thailand’s service sector can supplement to India’s capabilities in areas such as agro-logistics and shipping services, distribution and warehousing, construction and interior decoration and hospitality services, which will have positive impacts on SMEs and the local economy. 

The Deputy Prime Minister was travelling with the delegation which consisted of companies including manufacturers of Rubber, Rubber wood, Tapioca Starch, Construction Materials and Logistics, to explore further ties with Indian companies. Setting up platform for agro commodities and other products was the key focus area during the event. He also witnessed the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Thailand-India Business Council (TIBC) and GlobalLinker so as to create a single online-platform for SMEs from both countries, as well as a MoU between BigBasket and DITP under Ministry of Commerce of Thailand.  

India is Thailand’s tenth largest export market. Thai-Indian trade reached US$ 12.5 billion in value, comprising Thai exports to India worth $7.6 billion and Thai import from India of $4.9 billion. Recently, the trade between the two nations has grown at least 60 per cent since 2016 and in ASEAN, Thailand now ranks as India’s fifth-largest trading partner.

The visit is a key part of Thai Government to boost alliances with India for a number of reasons. Optimising FTA benefits, developing food processing industry, promoting Thailand as a trading nation and eventually establishing healthy channels of trade exchange which will benefit the Thai industries.

Thailand is the world’s largest exporter of Rubber and Rubber Wood. India has one of the largest rubber industry in Asia which produces mainly tyres and other products such as engineering components, medicals, tubes & pipes, latex products etc. Similarly, with a thriving furniture industry in India, the platform would offer Indian furniture makers opportunity to directly source best rubber wood from the suppliers and create a great alternative material supply. Thailand is also known for its Tapioca Starch which is one of the best in the world and the country’s primary export product. Similarly, Thailand is known for its Construction, Logistics and other industries which are now part of its flourishing economy.

Commenting on the development, Ms Supatra Sawaengsri, Executive Director & Consul Commercial said, “India has always been one of the crucial trade economies for Thailand. We have much more to explore in terms of products which can become important trade areas for companies looking to explore newer business opportunities. The Ministry has identified products in Thailand which can be create newer ventures in other countries and to explore possible business for participating companies.

Mr Laksanawisit will continue his India visit by travelling to Chennai and explore trade opportunities in South India.

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