The Thai 2023 election has come to a close and now the kingdom is proceeding into the next phase of forming a coalition government with the Move Forward Party earning the right to begin the process first for obtaining the highest seat from the election, followed by the Pheu Thai Party.
Assuming the Move Forward Party is able to form a government, one of the changes coming with the government would be its liberalization of the liquor industry bill that the party has long been pushing into law, but fails to get approval in the parliament.
The bill would remove all requirements in the industry of producing liquor. There will be no minimum requirement for capital registration, no minimum capacity requirement in any type of production. Those who want to brew their own liquor would only need to require a permission from the Director General of the Excise Department.
The current bill for the liquor industry is seen by oppositions as a huge favor to capitalist as the minimum requirements for opening up to brewers or distillers are so high that only big corporations can achieve, creating a monopoly in the liquor industry. This has caused many Thai producers to flee the kingdom to brew their own brand of liquor in neighbouring countries that have lower requirements and ship them back as imported goods, which double or triple the price tags due to duty tax.
The liquor market in Thailand valued nearly 500 billion baht in 2022, expanding 8.9% from a year prior. Analysts expected the market to continue growing in 2023, reaching 532 billion baht in value, with a 5.9% 4-year CAGR.
If the new coalition government is formed under the Move Forward Party, there is a high chance that the Progressive Liquor Bill will passed the vote this time, and this could potentially take away the revenue sharing of the two conglomerates in Thailand; Boon Rawd Brewery and Thai Beverage, which has long been holding the top spots in the less competitive Thai markets due to high requirements from the government that bar small brewers from entering the field.
The demand for beers that have prices of 4-7 times higher than a bottle of water will be lower, let alone liquor as people can make their own.
Meanwhile, the open market will allow small and medium size businesses to operate freely, giving more options for customers.