The Labor Minister, Phadermchai Sasomsub, plans to up significantly the skills of Thai workers before the realization of the ASEAN Economic Community in 2015. The Labor Minister added that officials are in the middle of the process to collect data from both business operators and workers in order to identify the best approaches to further develop labor skills. The Government has encouraged entrepreneurs and workers to pay greater attention to enhancing the quality of Thai labor in preparation for the ASEAN Community in three years’ time. He said that the emphasis on the quality of labor would be favorable to the promotion of innovations and creativity and the effort to increase the productivity of Thai labor. He stressed the need to enhance the potential of Thai labor in response to the Government’s policy of raising the daily minimum rate to 300 baht. Phadermchai urged both entrepreneurs and workers to equip themselves with know-how on high technology used in modern manufacturing and to emphasize the upgrading of labor skills. The objective is to help develop Thai businesses, so that they would be competitive in the world market. Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, meanwhile, cited labor as an important factor for all stages of industrial production. For this reason, she said, the Government attached great importance to skill development, which also includes labor protection and welfare, as well as work safety. She explained that the Government had decided to adjust the daily minimum wage in order to enable workers to earn more income to cope with rising costs of living and to increase their purchasing power. The move would also contribute to the Thai economy in the long run (Source).