Thailand lagging behind neighbours in fintech race

Study identifies areas where emerging market can catch up with its more advanced neighbours

Thailand lagging behind neighbours in fintech race

Insurance News

By Gabriel Olano

Ranking seventh out of 10 Asian markets in a fintech competitiveness index, Thailand is taking steps to catch up with its neighbours.

The index was developed by Ceresus, a data-driven customer experience research firm based in Taiwan. Singapore was the top-ranked market, followed by Hong Kong, then Japan, reported the Bangkok Post. Mainland China was not included in the study.

The study measured eight parameters: political environment, funding potential, financial attractiveness, talent levels, regulatory advancement, customer and market constructs, innovation ecosystem, and business environment.

Thailand’s financial regulators have launched a regulatory sandbox that allows firms to safely develop and test new financial services. An international cooperation agreement was also formed with the Monetary Authority of Singapore.

The government is also promoting the use of e-commerce and QR code-based payments. However, Thailand still has to work on cyber security and privacy issues. Banks also need to fortify their data capabilities, such as credit scoring for small and medium enterprises.

On a more positive note, Thailand placed second in terms of regulatory advancement, only behind Singapore, and outperformed its southern neighbour Malaysia.

Joy Lin, co-founder of Ceresus, said Thailand could grow its regional fintech presence if it could attract enough talent to work in financial programming, data analytics, and data science – areas critical for the development of fintech.

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