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Sell to S Sudan, firms urged

BUSINESS: Unusually quick off the mark, the government’s Department of Export Promotion is urging Thai companies to set their sights on a new market – the new country of South Sudan, which came into being just a few days ago after years of civil war in Sudan.

Saturday 23 July 2011, 03:58AM

Director General Nantawan Sakuntanak said this week that exporters should look at the possibility of a new market segment for Thai products in South Sudan where people, she said, had high purchasing power thanks to oil exports.

Ms Nantawan said that South Sudan is is also “perfect located geographically” for Thailand to use as a gateway for exports to other African nations.

Thailand has in fact been exporting to South Sudan for some time; even before it was recognized as a nation on July 9, exports to the then-region of Sudan were worth B4.8 billion in 2010.

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Sugar topped the export list, followed by air conditioners and cars. Other items include canned fruits, plastic items, washing machines, canned seafood, radios, televisions and rubber.

Thai soldiers, not always popular at home, have made a positive mark for Thailand’s image in South Sudan, where they served as part of the United Nations contingent, and won hearts and minds digging wells and showing people Thai methods of growing food.

– NNT/The Phuket News



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