Are Thai workers ready to work from home?
Since July 1, the vast majority of businesses in Thailand have been allowed to resume operations as COVID-19 restrictions continue to be eased around the country.
As Thailand moves into the final phase of easing lockdown measure however, the country has now moved to extend its state of emergency by another month to the end of August 2020. “The extension is in accordance with the latest relaxation measures where all businesses have resumed operation,” explained government spokeswoman Narumon Pinyosinwat.
But, as Thailand continues to take tentative steps towards economy recovery, would businesses be better served to adopt a remote working model?
Describing how key economic drivers in Thailand continue to be “bogged down” because of the pandemic, Takorn Tantasith, former secretary-general of the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC), has called upon the Thai government to promote the country as a work-from-home (WFH) hub.
Takorn, who is the principal expert for the National 5G Committee and the National Digital Economy and Society Committee, said that Thailand has a “strong advantage” as a WFH hub in ASEAN as it was the first 5G adopter in the region.
He also urged for digital platforms to be strengthened to support WFH and urged the government to support the development of local over-the-top platforms for daily use to help boost revenue streams for the country.
Like many of their neighbours in ASEAN, Thailand is expected to endure a challenging 2020, with the country’s financial ministry predicting a record 8.5% GDP contraction for the year. The ministry also cut its 2020 estimate for exports to a fall of 11%, while predicting a rebound in 2021, with expected growth of 4%-5%.