Thailand, Alibaba Group Sign E-Commerce Training Agreement
The government of Thailand and Chinese e-commerce heavyweight Alibaba Group have signed a letter of intent to cooperate on initiatives that will improve e-commerce in the country, by providing training for SMEs and individuals. It will also look at ways to advance Thailand’s logistics capabilities to support new economic model Thailand 4.0 and Digital Economy strategies.
Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak commented on the agreement: "In order to strengthen the competitiveness of Thailand's SMEs and help them succeed in an increasingly digital era, the Prime Minister has earlier assigned responsibilities to a taskforce made up of government agencies and private enterprises to work with Alibaba in a joint effort to lift the export capabilities of Thai businesses, starting from the grassroots and community level and extending to mid-tier businesses operating locally and SMEs hoping to engage in export trade."
The agreement makes provision for the training of 30,000 Thai SMEs to help them access online shopping platforms. Alibaba and Lazada, its majority owned online platform in Southeast Asia, will provide the training and help the Thai government to create a national e-commerce site. They will also train senior government officials on big data and artificial intelligence technology, and groom e-commerce business coordinators who will aid SMEs in creating online export opportunities.
A separate People and Talent Development Programme will train some 10,000 individuals in digital technology. The two sides will also mentor software developers who will then be able to access the Chinese market via Alibaba Cloud’s marketplace for apps.
The wide-spanning agreement also includes the development of Thailand’s supply chain and logistics networks by working with Thailand Post, in order to expand domestic delivery to all Thai provinces in 2017. Alibaba’s inventory management systems, including bonded warehouses and fulfilment centres, will be examined and adapted to the country's needs.
Finally, Alibaba and the Thai government will explore ways to coordinate opportunities presented by the Eastern Economic Corridor Development project (comprised of the Chon Buri, Rayong and Chachoengsao provinces) and make the country a hub of digital technology and regional data centres in the region.
© 2016 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Karen Henderson. To subscribe to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine, click here.