The panel said yesterday that although net applications from foreign companies to the Board of Investment had increased year on year in the first three months of 2008, general foreign investment that did not involve applications for BoI incentives had declined.
Thai Chamber of Commerce chairman Pramon Sutivong said the joint panel would hold a seminar in June aiming to gather suggestions from foreign operators for stimulating their investment in Thailand.
"The most important thing is their confidence," he said. "Nowadays they are concerned that there will be changes in our political situation, especially [as a result of] the issue about revising the Constitution."
Pramon said that if the government expressed serious action by launching its mega-projects and the Thailand Investment Year campaign, it would help to restore confidence.
"If the government announces [a move in] the obvious direction, but there is no action, foreigners' decisions about their investment will probably be postponed for a few months," he said.
Federation of Thai Industries chairman Santi Vilassakdanont said inflation rates next month would not be less than 5 per cent because of rising rice, sugar and oil prices. "Manufacturers need to boost production efficiency because they will be affected by rising production costs as well as increases in wages," he said.