Call for SME ministry, university in Thailand

Something I have been advocating for over the years and hoping to see happen in Malaysia.

Published in Bangkok Post (By Phusadee Arunmas - 30 July 2014) 

The military regime is being urged to set up a new ministry and university dedicated to small and medium-sized enterprise development and promoting SME clusters to cope with higher competition from imminent regional economic integration.

Aat Pisanwanich, director of the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce’s Center for International Trade Studies, said a centre study found Thai SMEs had very little marketing and investment exposure in Asean markets compared with those from other countries such as Singapore and Malaysia.

Tokyo SME University

Tokyo SME University

“One of the ways for Thai SMEs to tap into regional marketing and investment opportunities is to set up SME clusters and trading companies to promote investment, particularly in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Indonesia.

“They need to follow the business model developed by China, Singapore and Vietnam in promoting foreign investment by their SMEs,” he said

Mr Aat also urged the junta and new government to set up an SME university and ministry to promote and support Thai SME development, citing Japan, which now has nine SME universities.

Those universities play a vital part in helping to develop quality, packaging and marketing for popular Japanese SME products, he said.

Mr Aat said given the relatively high capital requirements and operation costs, individual Thai companies, especially SMEs, were finding it tougher to succeed in expanding abroad.

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