Address ageing issues now, World Bank urges

Thailand’s economy will continue growing and the pace could pick up if the country properly addresses future challenges including its rapidly greying population, according to the World Bank. The Bank’s 2016 economic forecast for Thailand was raised from the 2.2-per-cent growth estimated six months ago to 2.5 per cent. This is the slowest in Southeast Asia, whose gross domestic product is predicted to grow by an average of 6.3 per cent. Ulrich Zachau, the World Bank’s country director for Southeast Asia, stressed the need for three critical reforms – education for higher labour productivity, further liberalisation in the service sector to maintain economic openness, and fiscal arrangements to cope with the rising ageing-associated costs.

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