Thailand seeks Indian investments

January 25th, 2012 - 9:45 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Jan 25 (IANS) Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra Wednesday asked Indian businesses to invest in her country, saying it could act as a gateway to the larger ASEAN market.

She said Thailand could become a platform for companies who wanted to access the 600 million consumers of the ASEAN region.

“Thailand is a gateway to the ASEAN region. We are concentrating on increasing regional connectivity. We can work with you to link up with the markets in ASEAN.

“To support this my government has planned to invest in transportation and logistics projects in Thailand. Our priorities will be to link Thailand and our neighbour countries,” said the 44-year-old first woman premier of Thailand on her maiden visit to India.

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations trade and security grouping comprises Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Phillipines, Singapore, Cambodia, Laos, Brunei, Vietnam and Myanmar.

India’s Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma, after talks with Yingluck’s delegation, said both countries should expand their trade basket and explore new areas of investment.

Sharma also invited Thai businessmen to investment in India’s infrastructure, food processing, chemical and food processing industries.

Major Indian entities doing business in Thailand include the Tata group (automobiles, steel and software), Aditya Birla group (chemicals and textiles), Indo-Rama group (chemicals), Lupin (pharmaceuticals), Dabur, Bharti Airtel, NIIT and Punj-Lloyd, reflecting the diverse sectors of interest. From the public sector, Indian Overseas Bank, Bank of Baroda, Air India and New India Assurance are present in Thailand.

Investment by Indian and Thai companies in each other’s countries is growing. Indian FDI into Thailand is estimated to be around $1.5 billion. Thailand has invested over $65 million in India since 2000.

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