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Thailand approves US$6.71b in investment in Q1
[BANGKOK] Thailand's investment agency said on Tuesday it had approved applications for 793 projects worth 217.5 billion baht (US$6.71 billion) in the first quarter of this year, mainly in services and public utilities, and the electronics sector.
Thailand's military-led government has struggled to revive Southeast Asia's second-largest economy, since seizing power in May, and growth in 2014 was only 0.7 per cent.
The junta has cleared a backlog of investment applications that built up when protests paralysed the previous elected government. It aims to encourage private investment by speeding up its project approval process.
Thailand's Board of Investment (BOI) said 176 approved projects in the service and public utilities sector were worth a combined value of 60.57 billion baht, while 98 projects in electronics sector were worth 56.13 billion baht.
The value of applications approved in the first quart was five times more than in the the 34.65 billion baht approved for all of last year, it said in a statement.