Thai Prime Minister Announces Digital Wallet Plan to Boost Economy, but Experts Question Funding Sources.

Thai Prime Minister considers funding options for $13.7 billion stimulus package to bolster economy

Thai Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin announced on Wednesday that the economy was facing challenges and needed a boost from a proposed handout scheme worth 500 billion baht ($13.7 billion). This scheme, known as the “digital wallet” plan, would involve transferring 10,000 baht ($275) to 50 million Thais to be spent within six months. However, concerns about the funding for this scheme have arisen, with some experts questioning its fiscal responsibility.

Srettha revealed that the finance ministry and the Budget Bureau have been tasked with exploring potential funding sources for the scheme, in addition to considering a borrowing bill. He emphasized the importance of boosting the economy, which has experienced low growth over the past decade. The government has decided to delay the distribution of funds until the fourth quarter of the year, pushing back from the initial timeline of May.

The state planning agency has revised its 2024 growth outlook due to unexpected contraction in the final quarter of 2023 and full-year growth at 1.9%, below the 2.5% growth in 2022. The new projection ranges from 2.2% to 3.2%, down from the previous estimate of 2.7% to 3.7%. The government plans to discuss

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