The year 2024 forecasts a shift in business trends, with virtual banking, sustainability, lifestyle trends, digital fast food, tourism soft power, high-end property, electric vehicles (EVs), healthcare, and bio-, circular and green (BCG) manufacturing taking centre stage.
2024 Business Trends
In an ever-evolving digital landscape, the financial sphere is embracing a revolutionary change – virtual banking is set to launch as a prominent business movement in the year 2024. The Bank of Thailand is steering this shift, having completed the setup of licensing regulations and eagerly awaiting the green light from the Finance Ministry. When this progress comes to fruition, we can anticipate seeing license applications rolling out in the year 2024, paving the way for virtual banking operations to come alive by 2025. These first three virtual bank licenses are geared towards meeting the needs of the vast pool of customers, paying particular attention to the unserved and underserved, including the retail sector and small to medium-sized enterprises.
The concept of sustainability is no longer a mere buzzword; it has embedded itself firmly across all sectors of commerce. The impetus provided by the global pandemic, twinned with economic trials, has nudged Thai companies towards integrating ESG – environment, social, and governance – principles tightly into the fabric of their corporate identities. This alignment is evident, as seen in the newly sanctioned Thailand ESG Fund by the Finance Ministry, championing investment in ESG-focused stocks and the burgeoning world of green bonds.
With evolving consumer habits, the dawn of 2024 brings a ray of hope to diverse lifestyle-related business sectors. Look at the ever-blossoming pet market – a robust growth trend that shows no signs of slowing, with a keen eye now shifting towards the world of exotic pets. In parallel, we see the ascent of environmental ventures, riding the wave of heightened consumer consciousness for eco-friendly lifestyles.
Digital Fast Food
Quick-service restaurants, too, have caught the digital bug, transforming their operational models to sync up with the digitally-charged shifts in consumer demands post-pandemic. Investing in unique mobile applications has taken center stage for these QSR operators, presenting patrons with a plethora of dining choices and purchase avenues.
Tourism Soft Power
The charm of soft power is slated to shine in the tourism sector, bringing forth a wave of high-caliber tourists in 2024. Forging this path forward is the National Soft Power Strategy Committee (NSPSC), which ambitiously eyes a mammoth 4 trillion baht revenue goal whilst promoting its 11 select soft power industries.
Property developers are now setting their sights on more opulent pastures, turning their attention to the high-value, low-rise housing market, driven by a stagnation in the purchasing prowess of the mid- to low-end markets. The preference leans towards low-rise housing, where the principal demand stems from local patrons in quest of more expansive living spaces, especially in the wake of the pandemic.
In the realm of transportation, Thailand’s endeavors to emerge as a regional electric vehicle (EV) nucleus is gearing up to come to an auspicious head in 2024, with prominent global EV producers setting the wheels of passenger EV production in motion within the country. The much-awaited debut of Thailand’s own locally manufactured EVs is anticipated as early as the second quarter of 2024.
Rise of Healthcare
The healthcare and wellness industry’s future looks robust, charted for growth in the year 2024. This optimistic projection rides on the coattails of a tourism resurgence, coupled with anticipated economic ascendancy. Emboldened by governmental stimulus measures, the industry hopes to see an upswing in expenditures linked to healthcare and wellness services.
In a firm commitment to dialing down carbon dioxide emissions, Thailand will continue its journey towards sustainable manufacturing practices in 2024. This journey, encapsulated in the BCG – bio-, circular and green – manufacturing ideologies, advocates for production methods that elevate product value while treading gently on our planet.
The look ahead to 2024 unveils a business landscape that leans into the winds of digitization, sustainability, and customer-centricity, marking a significant leap towards practices that promise to shape a future-ready economy.