The Thai Cabinet has approved the setting up of Thailand Future Fund with 100 billion baht ($2.78 billion) initial capital to reduce the government’s burden on financing the country’s infrastructure development.
The fund will also seek participation from Thai and foreign investors as well as the general public who prefer investing on the long-term basis. Initially, the Finance Ministry will allocate 10 billion baht from its Vayupak Fund to seed the fund to build up confidence among prospective investors.
“The government wants to accelerate the investment of these infrastructure projects, as they will greatly improve the country’s investment atmosphere and competitiveness. Unless we set up this fund, the government will be able to do only a few projects,” Finance Minister Apisak Tantivorawong told media.
According to the State Enterprise Policy Office, the first phase of the fund is scheduled to be done in January next year. Then, Thai and foreign investors will be allowed to join in the upcoming second phase.
“We set up this fund because we want the private sector to participate. This way, we will have long-term funding from insurance firms and retirement funds,” he said.
The 2.72-trillion-baht ($75.56 billion) fiscal 2016 budget is forecast to run a deficit of 390 billion baht ($10.83 billion), as the government’s revenue is targeted at only 2.33 trillion baht ($64.72 billion).
The Transport Ministry planned to invest 1.8 trillion baht ($50 billion) during 2015-20, and it is estimated that around 130-140 billion baht ($3.61-$3.89 billion) would be injected into the economic system next year.