CLASSIFIEDS ONLY THB 2,500 + VAT FOR 3 LANGUAGES The Phuket News Kata Rocks The Phuket News
The Phuket News Business News
The Phuket News Phuket | Thailand | World | Business | Q&A | Weird World XML, RSS, Feed
The Phuket News The Phuket News
The Phuket News

Alibaba move to redefine Thai-Chinese trade

BANGKOK: Alibaba Group CoFounder and Executive Chairman of the Chinese Digital Conglomerate, Jack Ma this week signed four Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) outlining a plan to invest B11 billion (US$350.3 million) in Thailand aimed primarily at helping farm exports to China – and that figure could grow to B93bn


Andrew J Wood

Saturday 21 April 2018, 10:00AM

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha (right) greets Alibaba’s Jack Ma. Photo: Government House
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha (right) greets Alibaba’s Jack Ma. Photo: Government House

Alibaba Group Holding Limited is a Chinese multinational e-commerce, retail, Internet, AI and technology conglomerate founded in 1999 with a hugely successful e-commerce and on-line shopping business via web portals, as well as electronic payment services, shopping search engines and cloud computing services.

The group owns and operates a diverse array of businesses around the world in numerous sectors, and is named as one of the world’s most admired companies by Fortune.

Alibaba plans for a new digital free-trade zone in Thailand advocating global free trade. It would be Thailand’s third such free-trade zone.

During his meeting in Thailand, Mr Ma met Thai Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha, Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak and the rest of the Thai government’s economic team to discuss their future cooperation and the group's investments in the country.

The Chinese e-commerce giant agreed to help SMEs, startups and farmers in Thailand by getting them more digitally connected through its platforms.

The Bangkok Post reported that they also discussed plans for a smart digital hub that will be developed in the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC).

Alibaba Group’s investment in Thailand’s EEC zone will facilitate increased agricultural exports from Thailand to China.

Groundbreaking is expected this year and the zone will be fully operational next year.

The Thai trade zone follows similar “e-hubs” in Hangzhou – Alibaba’s home city – and Malaysia.

Alibaba hopes to set up hubs across the world that will together make up an electronic world trade platform (eWTP) complementing the World Trade Organisation framework. Users of the hubs enjoy minimal tariffs, speedy customs clearance as well as state-of-the-art logistical support.

“With the eWTP our vision is to make the world more inclusive, sustainable and to support developing countries, small and medium sized companies as well as young people,” Ma said.

Also speaking at the event, Deputy PM Somkid said the Chinese e-commerce giant’s latest foray in Thailand would be a major shot in the arm for the country’s US$45bn eastern economic corridor.

The Thai government has said it hopes the vast project will help lift annual economic growth to 5% by 2020 from its 2017 growth rate of 3.9%.

Investors in the economic corridor enjoy tax breaks and can rent land parcels for up to 99 years.

The four memoranda of understanding were signed covering cooperation in four areas:

1. Using e-commerce to boost local farm product exports to China

2. Developing human resources for Thai e-commerce operations and startups

3. Running a digital tourism platform in Thailand

4. Alibaba's 11 billion baht investment in a smart digital hub in the EEC.

“China is on its way to becoming the world’s largest consumer, driven by rising income and a growing middle class of 300 million. There is no better time than now for trade-oriented countries to seize this opportunity to export to China as the country continues to open its doors wider for global trade,” Mr Ma said after the meeting.

He also praised Thai agriculture products and its digital prospects.

“Quality Thai agricultural products such as fragrant rice, durian and other tropical fruits in particular are sought after by the Chinese consumer,” he said.

“Given Thailand’s unique strengths in people and culture, we are confident of its future and growth potential.

“We are committed to being a long-term partner of Thailand to help enable its digital transformation,” the Alibaba co-founder added.

Gen Prayut said cooperation with the Alibaba Group will enhance the country’s e-commerce development and would be good for growth.

“The group believes Thailand has the potential to become an e-commerce centre in the region, which conforms to government policy. This also helps to develop the economies of neighbouring countries,” he said.

“This cooperation will assist local community businesses and help farmers increase their income as logistics will be much improved and farm products can will able to be shipped within 24 hours,” Gen Prayut noted.

The prime minister said Thailand and China can also generate income through a digital platform for tourism that Alibaba and the Thai government have agreed to develop.

Mr Somkid said Alibaba’s investment in the smart digital hub will be an important platform to link Thai SMEs, Otop (One Tambon, One Product) items and farm products to China and the global market.

The EEC Office signed two of the four MoUs yesterday (April 19), according to Kanit Sangsubhan, the agency’s secretary-general.

The first MoU covers cooperation with Alibaba’s e-commerce subsidiary in Singapore to drive exports of Thai farm products and other goods to the global market, starting with rice and durian.

To mark the deal, the Thai Rice Flagship Store was launched on to promote Thai rice to Chinese customers., formerly known as Taobao Mall, is Alibaba's business-to-consumer marketplace.

The Commerce Ministry expects up to 45,000 tons of high-quality rice will be exported via e-commerce channels this year, rising to 120,000 tons in 2019.

The second MoU was signed with Alibaba Group’s Cainiao Smart Logistics Network Hong Kong Ltd and focuses on the smart digital hub in the EEC.

This will utilise Alibaba and Cainiao's world-class data and logistics technologies to boost cross-border trade not only between Thailand and China, but also other markets, the group said.

“The cooperation will open a great opportunity for Thailand and enhance trading in Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia,” Mr Kanit said.

Alibaba Group inked the other two MoUs with three Thai agencies.

The first concerns an agreement between the Tourism Authority of Thailand and Zhejiang Fliggy Network Technology Co.

They will create a Thailand Tourism Platform to facilitate travel bookings and room reservations in the country to give hotels, shops and restaurants a wider audience of Chinese travellers.

The final MoU was between Alibaba Business School and two Thai authorities – the Industrial Promotion Department and the International Trade Promotion Department – to help develop more suitable human resources for SMEs including “smart” farmers.

It aims to train 30,000 entrepreneurs a year.

Andrew J. Wood is a freelance travel writer and long-time resident of Thailand. A seasoned hotelier and former General Manager of some of the country's leading hotels including the Royal Cliff Beach Resort, Pattaya.

Andrew is a former Board member and Director of Skal International's (SI) Exec Committee, National President of SI THAILAND and is currently President of SI BANGKOK and Acting Vice President Southeast Asia of Skal’s Asian Area.



The Phuket News
The Phuket News
Comment on this story
* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.
Comments Here:

Comments Left: Characters
E-mail: (No Hotmail, Live, MSN and Outlook accepted at this time)
   => Forget password?

Capt B | 21 April 2018 - 15:07:04

With all due respect, & although Jack is probably a good bloke;The belt and road is a political scheme, to cover the growth of China’s political control over its neighbours. Actual construction is very small. China, meanwhile, is continuing to build and militarize artificial islands in the South China Sea.   

The Phuket News
Matches 1 result(s)
The Phuket News
The Phuket News
The Phuket News
The Phuket News The Phuket News The Phuket News
The Phuket News
Share this
The Phuket News
Have a news tip-off? Click here
The Phuket News
Related stories
The Phuket News
Phuket community

Recent Comments

Chalong Circle closed to turns from early next month

And I'm sure those heavy vehicles and busses will follow the plan and not uturn where the other traffic will, yeah right! the whole area is a disa...(Read More)

Phuket official blames ‘official processes’ for lifeguard fiasco

I forgot to say, that only thai Officials living in a thai bubble can ventilate such nonsense, without believing it themselves. Laugh stock, all thes...(Read More)

Truck found abandoned with 1.4 tons ‘ya bah’

A wheel had fallen off! Yeah. With value of that amount? Here is a complete different scenario playing. A Mazda pick up can carry 1,425 kg load. Not...(Read More)

Phuket’s haphazard lifeguard coverage flamed, comprehensive plan blanked

It's quite simple. Use all the traffic police who are not making Thai's wear helmets and place them on the beaches and ban people from enterin...(Read More)

Phuket’s haphazard lifeguard coverage flamed, comprehensive plan blanked

The requirements for adequate lifeguards are well established. Competitive bids could be easily submitted in two weeks. So, why isn't it done? ...(Read More)

Police block marchers from leaving Thammasat

This today's affair is a set back for the Junta. If they had thoughts of becoming political accepted by the nation, they can forget about it. Who...(Read More)

Dead or alive, search for whale shark continues off Phuket

"I have also asked the tourist police at Royal Thai Police in Bangkok to support us as they can help to inform tourists about laws regarding prot...(Read More)

Phuket’s haphazard lifeguard coverage flamed, comprehensive plan blanked

Perhaps if Mr Jenner works with a local Thai Organisation and had a local present this excellent plan as a Thai initiative it may have been taken more...(Read More)

Phuket’s haphazard lifeguard coverage flamed, comprehensive plan blanked

For many years now we have seen and still see that the current lifeguard system is failing. Take it out of the hands of incompetent Officials, includ...(Read More)

Phuket’s haphazard lifeguard coverage flamed, comprehensive plan blanked

Just curious, if Patong was the only beach with professionally trained lifeguards, why didn't they prevent a drowning in very calm conditions? And...(Read More)

The Phuket News
Weird World
The Phuket News PHUKET LIFE
Phuket Arts
Phuket Community
Phuket Culture
Phuket Dining
Phuket Education
Phuket Entertainment
Phuket Environment
Phuket Health
Phuket People
Phuket Technology
Phuket Travel
World Entertainment
Photo Galleries
The Phuket News PHUKET SPORT
Phuket Buy and Sell
Phuket Jobs
Phuket Property
Phuket Cars and Boats
Phuket Community
Phuket Services
The Phuket News The Phuket News PHUKET EVENTS
Phuket Event listings
Phuket Event calendar
Buy Tickets
Phuket Bars, pubs and clubs
Phuket Hotels and villas
Phuket Restaurants
Phuket Yellow Pages
The Phuket News BARGAINS
The Phuket News ABOUT US
The Company
Distribution points
Advertise with us
Pay for advert
Contact us
Content Google Map
Site map
Australian Visa Services
Currency - The Phuket News   Weather Report - The Phuket News   Surf Report - The Phuket News
LinkedIn - The Phuket News   Twitter - The Phuket News   YouTube - The Phuket News   Facebook - The Phuket News
Copyright © 2018 Class Act Media. All rights reserved. | Website usage terms and conditions | Privacy and Confidentiality Statement.