Lower rental fees to spark SEZ interest
Published: 14 Jun 2017 | WRITER: Wichit Chantanusornsiri
[Bangkok Post] The Treasury Department is set to cut rental fees for land in special economic zones (SEZs) as a way to draw private investment, the department's new chief says.
The plan is to relax some conditions for developing state land for SEZs in the next round of auctions, Patchara Anuntasilpa said in his first interview with media since his appointment to head the Treasury Department.
The lower rental rates for SEZs will go before the policy committee on special economic zones chaired by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha for approval tomorrow, Mr Patchara said.
The government decided a few years ago to set up industrial estates in SEZs in 10 provinces, focusing on agriculture, industry, logistics and tourism.
Apart from Tak, Sa Kaeo and Songkhla provinces, the government has flagged Trat, Mukdahan, Chiang Rai, Kanchanaburi, Narathiwat, Nakhon Phanom and Nong Khai for SEZ sites.
Some areas designated as SEZs may not be ready for development, due to a lack of basic infrastructure, so cuts in rental rates will help draw hesitant investors, Mr Patchara said.
"The reduction in rental rates will be implemented for areas in the future bidding, while the rate for those already auctioned will remain unchanged," he said without elaborating on the new rates.
The National Economic and Social Development Board said recently that it would make a proposal to the SEZ committee to open bids for the private sector to rent land on 1,000 rai owned by the Treasury Department to develop as industrial estates in Nakhon Phanom.
The Treasury Department in February set lenient conditions for the bidding to develop state land into SEZs after receiving a lukewarm response from putting 2,693 rai -- 718 rai in Nong Khai, 1,080 rai in Mukdahan and 895 rai in Trat -- under the hammer last year.
Rental contracts were for 50 years, with the rental rates and fees at the auctions starting from 24,000 baht per rai per year and 160,000 baht per rai per year, respectively.
In last year's auction, Property Perfect Plc was the only company to bid on developing land in Trat province and it won the bid.
The relaxed conditions include land development experience in wider fields, an extension of development proposal submissions, changes in construction cost presentation models and permission for winners to sublease their developed land.