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Trade Opportunities for Southern Border Provinces in ASEAN Markets

A group of farmers, entrepreneurs, and community enterprise operators from Yala, Pattani, Narathiwat, and Songkhla have been provided with knowledge and information about trade with ASEAN markets.

They attended an online seminar, presided over by Deputy Commerce Minister Sinit Lertkrai, who also gave a keynote address on increased trade opportunities in ASEAN for the southern border provinces of Thailand.

Experts from both the public and private sectors also participated in the seminar to share their experience in doing business with various ASEAN countries. They also talked about Thai exports to ASEAN and the use of free trade agreement (FTA) privileges in the framework of the AEAN Free Trade Area through the elimination of both intra-regional tariffs and non-tariff barriers.

The southern border provinces have diverse products, such as seafood, fruit, rubber, batik cloth, handicrafts, herbs, and halal food. Many local products are recognized for their high quality and have made a name for the deep South.

The Deputy Commerce Minister urged Thai traders to prepare for greater opportunities through the development of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Agreement, which is expected to take effect in early 2022.

He believed that the RCEP would create more trade opportunities for local farmers, entrepreneurs, and community enterprise operators in the southern border provinces to export their products to ASEAN markets.

The RCEP is a proposed FTA between the 10 ASEAN member states, and it marks ASEAN’s biggest free trade pact to date, covering a market of 2.2 billion people, with a combined size of US$26.2 trillion or 30 percent of the world’s GDP.

Source: The Government Public Relations Department