Asia St: Thailand’s PM Prayut Faces Final Hurdle to Completing Full Term

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Thailand’s PM Prayut Faces Final Hurdle to Completing Full Term

July 20, 2022

Prime Minister Prayut (Photocredit: Facebook/Prayut Official)

The BGA Thailand Team led by Managing Director Teerasak Siripant wrote an update to clients on the last censure debate as a final challenge for Prime Minister Prayut before Thailand’s next general election.

Context

  • Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha’s administration has mustered all its support in Parliament to survive its last censure debate, scheduled from July 19-23.If the administration succeeds, there is little chance for the opposition to derail Prayut’s rule in favor of an early poll, he will have considerable influence over the timing of the next general election.
  • The censure debate will be the opposition’s last chance to topple Prayut and trigger an early election. Regardless of the outcome, this is an opportunity for the opposition parties to gain political capital by exposing the government’s shortcomings and irregularities. Though improbable, a potential change of government or leadership could revitalize Thailand’s stagnating economy.

Significance

  • The Prayut government is likely to weather the censure debate and eke out the remainder of its term.If this happens, the government will seek a return to office after the general election, which looks like it will take place after the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit that Thailand will host in Bangkok from November 18-19.
  • All signs suggest Prayut will run for a second term despite several recent political setbacks. Political tensions will build in the interim because government performance has been subpar and Prayut’s popularity has declined markedly.

Implications

  • There may be delays on certain government and regulatory decisions assenior government officials may prefer to survey the post-election landscape before making major decisions.
  • Businesses can expect no major political changes will affect their operations until after the APEC Summit, if the government survives the debate and presumably remains in power.

BGA will continue to keep you updated on developments in Thailand as they occur. If you have any comments or questions, please contact BGA Thailand Managing Director Teerasak Siripant at tsiripant@bowergroupasia.com.