1. Thai bonds to draw foreign investors : Rise in capital inflow seen if baht maintains upward trend in first half of year. The strengthening of the baht since the beginning of the year would draw foreign investors to the Thai bond market, said Thiti Tantikulanan, head of Kasikornbank’s Captial Markets Business Division, adding that sectors expected to perform were real estate, food and beverages, agriculture as well as telecom. The Nation
  2. KBank sees BoT pausing rate hikes throughout year : Business operators’ financial costs are expected to remain constant based on anticipation that the Bank of Thailand will pause rate hikes throughout the year after December’s 25-basis-point increase, says a Kasikornbank (KBank) executive. Bangkok Post
  3. Farmer aid scheme topped up with B5bn : Another 5 billion baht has been added to finance the rice harvest and quality improvement scheme for farmers in the 2018-19 season. Bangkok Post
  4. TRA predicts flat spending in first half : The Thai Retailers Association (TRA) predicts flat consumer spending in the first half, despite bullish consumer sentiment from the planned general election and the value-added tax refund for Chinese New Year shopping. Bangkok Post
  5. Export growth to shrink : 3-year expansion low predicted by UTCC . Thailand’s exports are expected to see the lowest growth in three years because of the Sino-US trade row, a global economic slowdown and the strengthening baht. Bangkok Post
  6. Oversupply causes flat land prices in Bangkok : Average prices of land plots and condos in inner-city locations will be flat this year because of pressure from a massive oversupply that remains unsold, according to property consultant CBRE Thailand. Bangkok Post
  7. Funding boost for healthcare: Bt200-bn allocated for fiscal 2020, higher per-head subsidy for new tests, treatments, services . The National Health Security Office (NHSO) will receive nearly Bt200 billion in fiscal 2020, about Bt6.5 billion more than the provision for fiscal 2019. The Nation
  8. Second bidder to be considered if no CP deal on high-speed rail : Negotiations in relation to the Bt224.5-billion high-speed railway project have yet to be concluded, while the secretary-general of the Eastern Economic Corridor (ECC) Committee has indicated that if a deal was not reached, BSR Joint Venture’s proposal will be considered. The Nation
  9. Euro 5 diesel upgrade set for 2023 : Decision aimed at curbing toxic dust . The Energy Ministry has settled on implementing a nationwide plan to upgrade environmental standards for diesel to Euro 5 by 2023, in line with the National Environmental Board’s schedule, to curb toxic dust levels. Bangkok Post
  10. Digital payments on the rise: The country’s adoption of digital payments has recorded significant progress, up 83% in 2018 from 2016, while fund transfers through traditional channels – branches and ATMs – sank by a double-digit percentage. Bangkok Post

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