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Thailand prime minister's economic adviser is the new central bank chief, report says

Mr. Sethaput will replace current Governor Veerathai Santiprabhob, whose five-year term ends on September 30
By Goh Thean Eu   
July 31, 2020

Thailand’s Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha says his economic adviser Sethaput Suthiwart-Narueput has been appointed as the next governor of the country’s central bank, according to a report in local English language daily Bangkok Post.

Mr. Sethaput is also a member of the Bank of Thailand’s monetary policy committee, a position he has held since 2014.

Mr. Prayut says his Cabinet approved the appointment on July 29 after Mr. Sethaput was nominated by the selection committee that was searching for a successor to Governor Veerathai Santiprabhob, whose five-year term ends on September 30. Mr. Veerathai has said he isn’t seeking an extension.

"Mr. Sethaput received the highest marks from the committee. He is part of a new generation that meets the government's requirements to help the administration," the Bangkok Post quotes Mr. Prayut as saying in the report on July 30.

Spokespersons for the Bank of Thailand did not immediately respond to questions from Asia Asset Management.

According to the report, Mr. Sethaput was one of six who applied for the job, two from the central bank and four external candidates. The application deadline was originally June 16, but the selection committee extended it to July 10 because there were only four applicants then, which the panel considered to be too few.

Mr. Sethaput, 55, began his career as a business analyst at consulting firm McKinsey & Co in 1988. He went on to hold senior positions in the financial sector, including senior vice president of the Stock Exchange of Thailand, president of SCB Asset Management, and member of the investment committee of the Government Pension Fund.