February 21, 2024

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Digital Milestones: Thailand’s Progress and Policies

During the period from 2023 to 2024, the technological landscape continued to evolve rapidly, bringing forth significant advancements and transformations across various sectors. Thailand’s commitment to advancing its digital landscape took a stride as Mr Prasert Chandraruangthong, the Minister of Digital Economy and Society, led the country’s delegation at the 4th ASEAN Digital Ministerial Meeting (ADGMIN) held in the Republic of Singapore.

Image credits: mdes.go.th

The meeting, held under the overarching theme of “Building an Inclusive and Trusted Digital Ecosystem,” brought together Digital Ministers from 10 ASEAN member countries, fostering collaboration and discussions on pivotal issues in the digital sphere. This meeting marks a significant milestone in the efforts to create a cohesive and forward-thinking digital landscape within the ASEAN community.

During the ADGMIN, Mr Prasert underscored Thailand’s strategic vision encapsulated in the policy initiative “The Growth Engine of Thailand.” This initiative aims to propel the nation towards a digital economy and a secure digital society, delineating three key developmental areas. Mr Prasert is optimistic about enhancing those strategies to elevate the digital standard in Thailand.

First, Thailand seeks to enhance its competitive potential by prioritising the development of digital infrastructure for seamless integration into the realm of digital governance. This involves elevating the standard of government digital services accessible to the public and advocating for the adoption of cloud technology within the government sector. The latter is particularly highlighted for its superior security standards compared to existing systems.

Second, Thailand is steadfast in boosting digital safety and security by expediting the creation of tools to combat cyber threats and online crime. The country also places a significant emphasis on public education to prevent potential dangers that may arise in the digital landscape. As the world grapples with the evolving landscape of technology, Thailand recognises the importance of addressing the ethical dimensions of artificial intelligence (AI).

In response to the rapid advancement of AI, Mr Prasert shared Thailand’s proactive stance in establishing guidelines for the regulation and ethics of AI technology, known as AI Governance and Ethics. The minister emphasised the importance of controlling the use of AI technology to ensure safety and efficiency in the country, citing the creation of the Thailand AI Ethics Guideline as a pivotal step in this direction.

“AI ethic is paramount. The ethical considerations surrounding AI have become a focal point as the technology continues to permeate various aspects of our lives,” added Mr Prasert.

Further, in highlighting the gravity of managing online dangers, Mr Prasert identified this as a pressing national security and transnational crime concern. Drawing attention to the ASEAN Working Group on Anti-Online Scam (WG-AS), proposed by Thailand, he stressed the need for collaborative efforts within the ASEAN region to prevent and combat online fraud, a global transnational crime issue. Additionally, he mentioned the establishment of the AOC 1441 Centre, which is tasked with addressing online crime problems and mitigating harm to the public.

Mr Prasert reiterated the urgency for ASEAN nations to work collectively and efficiently to address these challenges. He emphasised the need for integration to tackle online threats seriously, underscoring the importance of alleviating damage to people across the ASEAN region.

As Thailand takes strides toward becoming a digital powerhouse, its active participation in regional forums like the ADGMIN reflects its commitment to fostering collaboration, sharing expertise, and collectively addressing the multifaceted challenges posed by the digital era.

The three-pronged approach outlined by Mr Prasert demonstrates Thailand’s comprehensive strategy to not only enhance its digital capabilities but also to ensure the safety and well-being of its citizens in the rapidly evolving digital landscape. By addressing these three key areas simultaneously, Thailand aims to create a holistic and sustainable approach to digital advancement.

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