11 July 2024

Move Forward’s leader Pita Limjaroenrat stole the limelight again on Tuesday by using a motorcycle taxi to go to a meeting at the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI).

He did not say why he used a bike, but Sathorn Road, where the FTI is situated, is infamous for its traffic congestion.

This was the second time the would-be next prime minister of Thailand has taken a bike to get a meeting after his Move Forward Party won the most House seats in the general election.

The first time was on May 18th, when he went to a hotel to hold his first meeting after the election to announce the formation of his government. He said he wanted to avoid the traffic.

He told reporters before entering the FTI meeting that he wished to seek more details about the six proposals by the Joint Standing Committee on Commerce, Industry and Banking.

He said he would also explain his party’s policies on driving the economy against the backdrop of a slow world economy. He hoped that, with his explanations, businessmen will have a clearer picture of his party’s platforms.

Pita’s party’s election manifesto promised to raise the minimum wage to Bt450 immediately, if his party won the election.

Pita told reporters that, after gathering information from the private sector and SME labour about the minimum wage, he will bring the matter for discussion with his party’s transition panel, well as his coalition partners this week.

He emphasised that the Pheu Thai party, the number two in the coalition, supported the idea to raise the minimum wage.

This would not be the first time that the minimum wage would rise this much, from about Bt353 in Bangkok to Bt450, Pita said. During prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s time, the minimum wage rose to Bt300 throughout the country.

His transition panel is studying the effects of the increase in 2013.

Meanwhile, FTI Vice Chairman Isares Rattanadilok na Phuket said he expected the meeting to create understanding and build confidence in terms of daily wages, costs of electricity and water, as well as possible reforms of laws that are obstacles to economic growth.

He praised the new level of cooperation between the core party of the new government and the private sector.