Is it worth investing in Thailand in 2021?



Thailand is regularly cited as an example of how countries should have reacted to containing the coronavirus outbreak. It managed the coronavirus outbreak at the early stage ensuring the safety of its citizens. But Thailand did pray a heavy price for it too.  20% of Thailand’s GDP is accounted for by the tourism industry. With the pandemic hitting really bad at the global level, the Thai economy was majorly hit. But Thailand is all set to recover from its earlier losses. Thailand is also the hub of business in Asia. Hence, it’s not long before Thailand gets its foothold back again.

Thailand is the second-largest growing economic market, located in the heart of South East Asia. It serves as a gateway connecting SEA to the rest of the world. It regularly attracts huge sums of investment from countries such as China, Japan, and Korea. Thailand is also one of the major countries drawing foreign investments.

Thailand Economy Overview

Keeping Covid-19 aside, Thailand has rapidly developed economically over the last few decades. The nation houses most of the modernized citizens and profitable businesses. Exports account for more than two-thirds of Thailand’s GDP. According to the World Bank, Thailand has become the eighth largest economy in Asia. Nearly 40% of the country’s GDP is accounted for by the industrial and service sectors.  The 2019 GDP of Thailand is equal to $520 billion.  The World Bank has also recognized Thailand as one of the most improving nations in terms of social and developmental factors. Thailand also records one of the lowest unemployment rates in the world. The inflation rate in Thailand is nearly 1% which is expected to decrease in the coming year of 2021. Thailand has a low level of public debt and has been a developing economy, owing to its monetary policy being vested to The Bank of Thailand which has remained stable for the last few years.

Industry and Trade

The country’s economy is primarily dependent on exports. Thailand owes utmost importance to agriculture in terms of GDP investors. Nearly one-third of the country’s population is involved in it.  The main agricultural output consists of rice, rubber, corn, sugarcane, coconuts, palm oil, pineapple, cassava, and fish products. The country also has strong manufacturing and service sectors.  Thailand is an active member of ASEAN, and its main export partners are the United States, ChinaJapanVietnam, and Hong Kong. Its principal exports are manufactured goods, mainly electronics, vehicles, machinery, and food.

Surveys and Rankings

In the latest Global Competitiveness Report, Thailand has finished in the 40th rank. The World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Report the country has moved up six places to being the 21st out of 190 countries. Thailand also boasts of experiencing improved scores in government integrity and property rights during the most recent reporting period.

Real Estate Market

The steady growth in the property market of Thailand has been majorly pushed by foreign investments. Better economic outlook, higher take-ups, and increased occupancy rates have also contributed to the real estate market’s success. Real estate prices are expected to see a sharp rise in 2021.

Thailand & Bangladesh Trade Target In 2021

Thailand and Bangladesh are in advantageous geographical proximity for mutual trade and extension of their trade across the region. Thailand is central to Southeast Asia. The country has infrastructure and policy terms in a calculated manner to support investment in the form of development projects. One such example is the Eastern Economic Corridor. This will enable Bangladesh to distribute its goods across the region and to East Asia.  On the other hand, Bangladesh on the Indian Ocean has the modern infrastructure to facilitate Thai products and services in South Asia, the Middle East, and Africa.

The value of the Thai-Bangladesh trade has been targeted to reach US$2 billion (Bt60 billion) by 2021. The two countries benefit each other, particularly by their economic ties. Thailand regards Bangladesh as an important strategic partner in terms of trade, investment, and transportation. Bangladesh is Thailand’s third-largest trading partner in South Asia since 2018. In 2019, Thai imports from Bangladesh rose by 38.3 %. Bangladeshi direct investment in Thailand in the same period was worth $1.12 million.

Investment in Thailand in 2021

Thailand provides not one but many avenues where investments can be made for lucrative returns. Startup consulting services in Thailand help recognize market avenues where investments can be made to reap huge returns. One of the most lucrative businesses in Thailand is the tourism sector. Thailand has always been one of the most popular spots for holidaymakers. Its capacity to attract tourists is not limited to its stunning beaches, vibrant lifestyle, and unlimited shopping choices. Thailand houses some of beautiful tourist destinations like Bangkok, Phuket, Chiang Mai, Pattaya, and other beautiful cities, tropical destinations. The tourism industry is a well thriving sector.

Last year, Thailand welcomed a record-breaking number of more than 35 million visitors from all over the world, maintaining its position as Asia’s most visited tourist destination. With the expanding tourism industry, there is tremendous growth in demand for short-term rental contracts and holiday homes. All business startup consulting firms advise investing in this sector in 2021, owing to the growing demand for tourism after the worldwide lockdown ends at the end of 2020.

Real estate is a beneficial market in Thailand. The country is a significantly beneficial investor hotspot to sell and rent real estate in Thailand. The Thailand real estate market is expected to grow by 6 to 8 percent in 2021. This is in time with the recent increase in the influx of foreign investors entering Bangkok and Pattaya, especially from China. Thailand’s property market ranks as one of Asia’s most popular amongst Chinese investors. Bangkok is positioned for huge growth in its property sector, attracting overseas investments and regional headquarters keen to tap into the city’s economic potential. As a result of high property demand, prices on islands such as Pattaya, Phuket, or Hua Hin have gone up too. According to CBRE Thailand, properties close to mass rapid transport will continue to surge in price due to the high demand from local and foreign home buyers. Thailand also gives a big opportunity to foreigners to invest in real estate. Hence, companies looking to set up offices for the Asia region look forward to investment in Thailand in 2021.

Thailand is friendly towards foreign investments, unlike most countries where foreigners may be required to pay additional property tax. Recent contracts are written in both Thai and English. Besides the attractive tax structure for foreign buyers, it is relatively easy for property owners to sell their Thai home. This competitive tax structure coupled with the comparatively low entry price point makes it attractive for foreigners to enter the Thai property market. Hence this makes Thailand become one of the top choices amongst real estate investors worldwide.

With all the above factors playing important roles in pulling up the economy of Thailand to one of growth whereas the world economy will still be reeling under side effects of the Coronavirus outbreak, it can be safely concluded that investment in Thailand in 2021 would reap profits larger than can be projected anywhere else in the world.

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Andy Aditya

As Business Startup Specialist, Andy is often hired as a Virtual Director/Consultant to assist Business Owners in Thailand. For total business information and consulting for doing business in Thailand - Pls check - startupinthailand.com
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