1. Foreign ownership conundrum: Government proposals to allow foreigners to own one rai of land have been applauded by some as a way to revive the economy, but criticised by others who say Thais should be given assistance first. Foreign investment is being seen as a way to revive the sluggish economy, particularly with stagnating domestic purchasing power and GDP expected to grow by just 3% this year. The Interior Ministry said this month that it will resurrect a measure to allow foreigners to own one rai of land (roughly 0.16 hectares) for residence if they invest 40 million baht in Thailand. Bangkok Post
  2. Ministry expects MPI to increase in second half: The Industry Ministry remains positive about manufacturing, expecting the manufacturing production index (MPI) to keep increasing in the second half of this year after the indicator fell slightly in June by 0.08% year-on-year to 98.05 points. Bangkok Post
  3. State Railway board approved construction budget increase for Red line extension MRT (Talingchan-Salaya) by Bt470m to Bt10.6b to incorp with higher costs, seeks cabinet approval in 2H, open bid Jan 23.
  4. Energy Regulatory Commission insisted on proposing Bt0.6866/unit power tariff hike for September-December 2022, despite report that the PM had opposed the plan.
  5. All eyes on MPC move: Panel poised to raise policy rate by 0.50%. The meeting of the Bank of Thailand’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) next week is expected to raise the policy rate by 0.50%, according to Pipat Luengnaruemitchai, chief economist of KKP Research under Kiatnakin Phatra Securities Public Co. Bangkok Post
  6. Land prices in Bangkok keep slowing: Prices of vacant land in Greater Bangkok are growing at a slower pace due to the sluggish economy and a full collection of the land and building tax, which started this year. Vichai Viratkapan, acting directorgeneral of the Real Estate Information Center (REIC), said the price index of vacant land in Greater Bangkok was 354.5 in the second quarter of this year, up 4% from the first quarter and 6.5% higher than the same period last year. Bangkok Post
  7. Banks expected to delay rate hike: The Joint Standing Committee on Commerce, Industry and Banking (JSCCIB) believes the banking sector will delay raising the interest rate in line with the Bank of Thailand’s anticipated gradual policy rate hike. Under the policy rate hike trend in the second half of this year, banks may not react immediately to the interest rate increase in order to support borrowers amid the gradual economic recovery, Payong Srivanich, chairman of the Thai Bankers’ Association (TBA), said at a JSCCIB panel meeting yesterday. Bangkok Post
  8. Thai tourism earned Bt157b in 7M22 from 3.15m international travellers, including 1.07m alone in July, while the Tourism Ministry keeps 10m tourists target despite PM’s suggestion that the tally wud be lower.
  9. Despite fully reopening in July, the employment rate in the hotel sector stands at just 71% of the pre-pandemic level with 68% of hotels hit by a labour shortage, said Thai Hotels Association (THA).
  10. Most hotels still struggling despite full reopening: Despite fully reopening in July, the employment rate in the hotel sector stands at just 71% of the pre-pandemic level with 68% of hotels hit by a labour shortage, according to the Thai Hotels Association (THA). Bangkok Post

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