By Thai Newsroom Reporters
PRIME MINISTER SRETTHA Thavisin today (Nov.10) reconfirmed that the Pheu Thai-led government’s 10,000-baht digital wallet project will benefit as many as 50 million Thais throughout the country, beginning next May.
The prime minister announced that an estimated 50 million Thai nationals aged 16 years or over will be entitled to the populist handout campaign, effective from next May, under which the eligible recipient may use the 10,000-baht digital wallet under a blockchain platform to buy goods anywhere within their home district and within a six-month period.
However, those who may currently earn a minimum of 70,000 baht in monthly income or have a minimum of 500,000 baht in bank deposit will not be entitled to it, according to the prime minister.
The latest adjustment in the eligible recipient’s monthly income accounts for an increase from a minimum of 25,000 baht in monthly income or a minimum of 100,000 baht in bank deposit as well as a minimum of 50,000 baht in monthly income or a minimum of 500,000 baht in bank deposit as earlier proposed by an ad hoc government subcommittee to benefit some 43 million and 49 million Thais respectively.
In addition to a sum of 500 billion baht in government funding for the digital wallet project, another 100 billion baht will be provided in parallel to finance the upgrading of the people’s productivity potential throughout the country, he said.
He reassured that the populist campaign is primarily designed to promote domestic consumption on a short-term basis, stimulate local economy and finally boost the country’s GDP.
Nevertheless, the eligible recipient will not be allowed to use the 10,000-baht digital wallet to shop for goods online or buy alcoholic beverages, cigarettes, marijuana and Kratom leaves or buy services such as beauty salons, barber shops, massage and spa parlours, repair shops and car wash or buy jewellery items or repay debt or pay for power bills, water bills and automobile fuels or exchange for cash.
The prime minister said the Pheu Thai-led government plans to file legislation to borrow a sum of 500 billion baht to finance the digital wallet project and repay it all on instalment basis in four years.
Srettha has earlier commented that the 500 billion baht populist campaign would be by no means carried out by way of borrowing the money either from domestic or foreign sources.
Top and Front Page: Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin addressing a press conference on the 10,000-baht digital wallet scheme today, Nov. 10, 2023. Photos: Thai Rath