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How should Thai business operators adjust themselves in preparation for greater competition ?

When Asean enters the AEC era, how should Thai business operators adjust themselves in preparation for greater competition ?

Business operators can do as follows:
Offensively
1) Do thorough researches on AEC raw materials. It will allow them to import competitively, especially when it comes to quality and pricing.
2) Conduct thorough studies on consumers' tastes and prepare themselves for “Economy of Scale”. The market will be substantially bigger.
3) Look into possibilities of relocation of manufacturing bases. There must be locations that provide greater advantages than the current ones.
4) Pay attention to new Asean members (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam) in terms of manufacturing bases or export bases, or tax privileges they get from developed countries like the United States.
5) Adjust companies' logistics or develop them in light of logistical changes that could lower costs or provide greater convenience.
6) Search for new opportunities that will present themselves when labor costs change, restrictions are eased and new skills are easier to find.
7) Invest more in research and development in order to differentiate and increase values of your products.
8) Begin serious human resource development to prepare the workforce for AEC. Continuous training along with introduction of new technology will increase competitiveness.

Defensively
1) Know your rivals.
2) Find ways to reduce costs while increasing efficiency.
3) Increase strengths, and reduce weaknesses.
4) Turn crisis into opportunities by looking for possibilities of joint venture or business partnership or alliances in Asean.
5) Use appropriate strategies to maintain your customers.
6) Know how to keep and develop your manpower. Loyalty leads to productivity.

Source: The Commerce Ministry

Thai products and services that can be affected by free market

Thai products and services that can be affected by free market
Without good preparations, the following products and services of Thailand can be affected.

Goods
Farm products such as palm oil (With Malaysia as the main rival), tobacco seeds (Vietnam as the rival), tea (Indonesia as the rival) and rice can be affected by increased import or increased smuggling.

Industrial products. Petroleum face strong competition and chances of trade deficit with Malaysia and Myanmar having the advantages. Chemical products like plastic and rubber are threatened by Singapore and Malaysia. Steel and metal face threats from Indonesia and Malaysia. Pharmaceutical products are threatened by the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia.

Services
Logistical services
Telecommunications
Sectors requiring high technology and high investment
Medical sector: Hospitals face tough competition from Singapore which has great reputation, trustworthiness and good management.
Small- and medium-sized architectural firms. They have smaller funds and networks compared with rivals particularly Singapore.
Investment attractions. Thailand faces tough competition when it comes to attracting investors. Key rivals are Vietnam, Singapore and Malaysia.

Source: The Commerce Ministry

What should business people facing negative prospects do ?

What should business people facing negative prospects do ?

Improving productivity and quality while reducing costs is the key. New technologies must be explored and embraced. Possibility of business partnership or alliance must be constantly looked at. Partners' strengths and access to new suppliers and markets can help your businesses.

Standards of your products, on matters like hygiene, must be raised to international levels. Research and development must become serious and creativity must be encouraged. Create identities for your products so prospective customers can differentiate them.

Source: The Commerce Ministry

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