The Bank of Thailand has unveiled a sweeping redesign of its Internet Web site, touted as the largest in the country and aimed at providing investors and businesses with a complete range of economic information.
BANGKOK, 22 May 2000 - The Bank of Thailand's site, www.bot.or.th, has more than 3,000 pages and 15,000 files, said Thirachai Phuvanat-naranubala, a central bank assistant governor.
"It will probably be the best source of economic data available in Thailand," he said.
The central bank has taken a leading role among state agencies to put information and databases on the Internet.
One factor in the economic crisis, Mr Thirachai said, was poor and outdated data provided by authorities to the private sector, contributing to over-investment and inefficient allocation of resources.
The new site, available in Thai and English, should help local businesses set their future investment and operation plans. The central bank has invested around 650,000 baht in redesigning the site.
Information is broken into three main categories. The first category is general information. It includes notifications, press releases, speeches by senior officials, scholarship programmes and job opportunities.
The second category comprises of the economic databases, which are broken down into topics such as manufacturing, production, private investment, external trade, balance of payments, employment and commodities prices.
Reports of economic conditions, financial institution data and regional economic trends, as well as policy statements on monetary and foreign exchange trends are also online.
Mr Thirachai said the central bank would also publish inflation reports and projections looking two years ahead.
Under a revised Bank of Thailand Act, regulators will use an inflation-targeting model to set monetary policy.
Minutes of meetings of the central bank's monetary policy committee and the central bank's balance sheet will be available. This is part of the regulatory efforts to boost the transparency of the bank.
Information such as interest rate and exchange rate data are also available on the site.
Economists, analysts, the media or other interested parties can register to receive e-mail updates of changes to the site and new releases of information.