BANGKOK, April 24 – The Thailand government is increasing its investment budget for next year, seeing it as a key engine to boost the country’s economy. The government investment budget has been increased to 20 per cent of the total budget or 540 billion baht for the 2016 fiscal year from 17 per cent or 449.47 billion baht of the current budget, according to Deputy Prime Minister in Charge of Economic Affairs, Pridiyathorn Devakul.

Speaking to reporters, he said the investment budget will be key for growth as prices of the main agricultural products such as rice and rubber are expected to recover next year. He said Prime Minister Gen. Praytuh Chan-ocha today instructed all ministries to be ready with their investment projects for next year’s budget so that the allocations could be disbursed once the new fiscal year begins on Oct 1.

Pridiyathorn said Prayuth made the instruction after chairing the 2016 budget management plan here today. Thailand’s national budget for fiscal year 2016 is 2.72 trillion baht, up from this year’s 2.575 trillion baht. He expressed optimism that Thailand’s economy would grow four per cent this year, boosted by growth in the tourism industry, the services export sector and the recovery of private investment.

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