Prime Minister Prayut Chan-ocha said on Monday that for the economic situation to resolve itself, the country must “be peaceful,” alluding to the months of anti-government protests aimed at his government.
Prayut said after the cabinet meeting on Monday that people in the society must work together to keep peace and stability while avoiding “unnecessary” activities.
“Every country is facing an economic crisis and many economies are even worse than us,” he said.
The World Bank’s latest data shows that Thailand is expected to head into a 10.4 percent recession in 2020, compared to a contraction of 7.6 per cent in 1998, the year after the Asian Financial Crisis. The World Bank said that Thailand faced the worst economic contraction rate in the world.
“We have potential so we should not destroy our own potential by doing things that we should not be doing because the confidence will be gone,” Prayut said.
His comments come before a major rally planned by student protests on October 14. Organizers say that the rally will be the largest yet with the aim of toppling the military-backed Prayut administration.
Prawit chimes in
Prawit Wongsuwan, the Deputy Prime Minister, said on Monday morning that he wanted to negotiate with the protest leaders but they do not want to speak with him.
“I want to talk to them but they are not talking to me,” he said.
Prawit said he was unconcerned with the planned rallies because he does not think that many people will join.
When asked why he believes that not that many people will join the rally, the Deputy PM said it was only a prediction based on observations as there were many who were against the protester’s demands as well.