Advisory gives Thailand a critical risk and threat rating of 4.5 out of 5

Thailand’s political and economic turmoil has become a major crisis and threatens to deepen yet further for the foreseeable future, according to a risk and threat advisory briefing produced by the KCS Group.

The strategic intelligence, risk and security management company advises that the Pheu Thai government has pushed the country into massive debt due with populist policies such as the rice pledging scheme and the bht120 million flood prevention projects.

It adds that corruption is rife and protectionist policies are so entwined within the Thai culture that the economy is incapable of functioning as a freely competitive market.

“On the other hand,” the briefing advises, “sits the People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC), which has held protests mainly in the capital, Bangkok, but also across the Southern provinces since December.

“This group claims, through its self-proclaimed leader and former Democrat party deputy Prime Minister, Suthep Thaugsuban, that while some amount of corruption is acceptable and considered part of Thai culture, the level of corruption to which Thaksin [Shinawatra] has stooped went far beyond what can be tolerated by high-society and middle-class Thais.”

While the protests have forced the government into a caretaker position,

which means it can no longer fund any further programmes or continue funding the rice scheme, it has yet to see Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra resign or the Pheu Thai party leave office, and the little ground that has been gained has come at a high price.

Sporadic acts of violence have seen some protesters and anti-government leaders killed and will only get worse as the standoff continues.

“The Thai Baht is suffering a long run of losses, despite the finance ministry’s active currency manipulation, and the Thai stock exchange (SET) has seen investor sentiment falling fast,” the advisory warns.