Dr. Pun-Arj Chairatana, Executive Director of NIA revealed that: "2021 and 2022 are the years where the word 'Soft Power' has become a national buzzword. The phenomenon, initiated by a few influential people in the art and entertainment industries, has sparked interest nationwide and helped generates income for entrepreneurs across the country. According to the Global Soft Power Index 2022, Thailand scored 40.2 points and ranked 35th place out of 120 countries. Impressively, the score has stepped-up by 1.5 points which reflects the surge of demands in media, communication, culture, tradition, and influence on tourists and the global community. Although the concept of soft power in Thailand is not entirely new, it is exciting and surely demonstrate a promising future as the national brand to attract people from around the world. In brief, it means creative economy accelerator."
"The NIA has set out guidelines to support startups in MARTech community with aims to elevate the potential of talented people in the university in running innovation into a real business as well as funding access. The development focuses mainly on transforming valuable culture and creativity into value-added products and services. To market Thailand's cultural innovations properly in the global arena, the agency has been working closely with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs through Thai embassies in more than 30 countries. The collaboration emphasizes the top 15 countries ranked on the Global Innovation Index such as Finland, Switzerland, France, and Sweden. These major innovation cities are where innovators reside. Therefore, it is an ample opportunity to promote Thailand's MARTech startups as well as the country's soft power using diplomatic tactics. It is estimated that MARTech will be worth 1.5 trillion baht, or an average growth of 6% by 2022. However, NIA targets to increase the number of MARTech startups to reach at least 45 by 2022. MARTech startups will be one of the main engines accelerating economic recovery as well as boosting the country's GDP." Said Dr. Pun-Arj.
In addition, to assist MARTech startups to earn recognition and growth, the NIA has also assessed technologies and innovations that will help boosting the growth of Soft Power in Thailand and globally. Innovations and technologies are utilized to create products that offer a new experience for consumers including;
- AI: Presently, AI technology is being applied to creative industries - from songwriting, and book writing, to creating arts. It is expected that up to 32 percent of the human workforce could be replaced by AI in less than 10 years.
- AR/VR: a thriving industry offers users a one-of-a-kind virtual experience unlike the physical world - from playing games, enjoying the concert, playing sports, to visiting museums. The NIA has helped encouraged startups in these segments by piloting various projects to create tourism experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic as well as organizing several virtual events. The AR/VR industry is forecasted to exceed $95 billion worth by 2025.
- Blockchain: It is recognized as the future of data management, especially for trading of creation ownership and copyrights management. Blockchain helps eliminate intermediaries between artists and consumers, and at the same time, help simplifies the process of contracting and artist rights management. Creators are eligible to value their creation of music, art, and or any kind of masterpieces. The platform also allows content creators to keep track of work consumption across all platforms.
"Utilizing innovations to add value to the 5F cultures required efforts and firm collaboration from both the government and private sector. The support from the government is therefore crucial whether it is funding or policy making. As for the NIA, we aim to reinforce MARTech startups to create a distinctive image among investors and global innovation developers, where other countries have generated hundreds of billion baht. Ultimately, the goal is to help placing Thailand on the high-ranking position of the Global Innovation Index." Dr. Pun-Arj concluded.