SME products planned to be sold on flights

Thai Smile plans to sell SME products next year as part of the government’s Pracha Rat initiative. (Photo by Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)

The government is planning another project to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) through selling products on flights, says Industry Minister Uttama Savanayana.

The move is part of the Pracha Rat project to support the local economy, and is expected to start with the sale of products on Thai Smile flights next year, he said.

Mr Uttama said the Industry Ministry is also in talks with Nok Air over the initiative.

To sell SME and startup products on flights, the ministry needs to create fair and acceptable standards for all goods, he said. The ministry will work closely with related government agencies, particularly the Thai Industrial Standards Institute (TISI), to set up standards and check all goods before on-board sales are offered.

He said the standard allows the government to build new channels to increase SME sales in the future.

“This is the first time Thailand is setting a standard for SME products. It helps guarantee the quality of the products for customers, making it easier for us to progress our marketing strategy,” said Mr Uttama.

The ministry is cutting down the period to achieve quality certification by TISI to 100 days from 150-400 days. This means SMEs and startups will be able to launch their marketing plans shortly after being certified.

“We expect the TISI to adjust the way they work and shorten their working process to help the private sector develop faster than in the past,” he said.

TISI secretary-general Nattapol Rangsitpol said the institute is in the process of working to help SMEs and startups under the Pracha Rat project.

The new industrial standard for SMEs and startups are due to be launched in the first quarter of 2018.

The government has been working on helping SMEs to improve their business and expand domestically and in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam, where demand is growing fast.

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