September Advocacy Update
September was a very busy month for AMCHAM on the advocacy front. Heidi, Executive Director, together with AMCHAM Platinum members, called on Dr. Kobsak Pootrakool, Deputy Secretary General to the Prime Minister, to hear about the government’s latest priorities, the new QR code initiative to facilitate expats regarding the 90-day reporting and TM30, progress on the Regulatory Guillotine project, the Smart Visa program, the new foreign investment promotion package called “Thailand Plus”, and opportunities to collaborate on STEM and vocational training. I enjoyed the chance to learn first-hand of the government’s desire to make life easier for long-term expats who live, work, and invest in Thailand. Heidi presented the AMCHAM White Paper to Dr. Kobsak.
Also in September, AMCHAM was invited by Dr. Thosaporn Sirisumphand, Secretary General of the National Economic and Social Development Council (NESDC) to the meeting on Thailand’s 20-Year National Strategy and collaboration with international development partners and selected foreign chambers of commerce. We had the opportunity to recommend issues of collective interest to AMCHAM members, including the enhancement of Thailand’s competitiveness strategy in terms of foreign investment, AMCHAM’s consistent support for Thailand’s vocational education reform, and easing the foreign licensing process to make Thailand an international hub for medical tourism by possibly opening up to foreign licensed physicians.
In our Government Affairs Council meeting, we reviewed the AMCHAM road safety campaign for consultation with the Ministry of Transport, and the Ministry of Education, discussed the idea of synergizing AMCHAM-US ASEAN Business Council advocacy efforts, and agreed to the formation of an AMCHAM task force on plastic waste management.
We are working closely with the AMCHAM Auto Council regarding advocacy work on the issue of emission standards, the Customs and Excise Council on the seminar on export control and WMD laws, as well as the excise tax policy, and the Healthcare Committee on the upcoming visit to Thailand Science Park.
Other new developments which we are keeping our eye on include the RCEP negotiations, the ASEAN Summit, and the Indo-Pacific Business Forum in November.
My detailed notes for the month can be found under the “Resources” section in the members-only section of the AMCHAM website.
Director of Government Affairs and Public Policy