Thailand Prime Minister Vows To Tackle Informal Debt

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Thailand will prioritise tackling informal debt to revive the economy, Prime Minister, Srettha Thavisin said.

“Informal debt is like modern-day slavery that destroys dreams … and a chronic problem,” he told a press conference, noting that the government would coordinate with police to prevent unregulated lending.

He said the measures, to solve one of the region’s worst household debt problems, will help with debt restructuring and prevent people from taking on more debt than necessary.

The government estimates there are about 50 billion baht ($1.43 billion) of informal debt, he said, adding that this was a conservative estimate and the problem could be larger.

“In the past, we didn’t take this problem together. We are more proactive, involving the administration, police, and the finance ministry working together,” Srettha said.

Thailand will also be taking on formal debt, in a country where household debt is about 90% of gross domestic product (GDP).

 

 

REUTERS/Christopher Ojilere