Day 1 of the 31st edition of Asia IoT Business Platform in Bangkok, Thailand (31 July and 1 August 2019) demonstrated opportunities for local digitalisation within the enterprise space, with conversations across various aspects of digital transformation being discussed
Push from Government to Realize Thailand 4.0
In the Government Keynote Address delivered by Ms. Ajarin Pattanapanchai, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society, she highlighted five primary sectors with examples of IoT deployment: (1) Precision Farming, (2) Smart Manufacturing, (3) Transport and Logistics Management System, (4) Utility Management System, and (5) Smart Health.
Ms. Ajarin emphasized the undeniable role of IoT as the key enabler for the development of Smart Cities.
Her keynote presentation was further complemented by government representatives including Dr. Supakorn Siddhichai, Executive Vice President, Digital Economy Promotion Agency, Dr. Polawat Witoolkollachit, Deputy Secretary General, Office of the National Digital Economy (ONDE) and Society Commission, Onwaree Jarernporn, Division Director & Acting Executive Director for Special Tasks Bureau, National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission. In a panel moderated by Wichit Srikreephuthana, Director of Professional Services and Delivery, SAS Thailand, digital projects led varying Thai government agencies were highlighted, including a project by ONDE to implement 10,000 free wifi hotspots in the country especially in the rural areas in order to bridge the digital divide.
All three panelists also had an ebullient discussion on data sharing. Dr. Supakorn emphasized on the need for local governments to utilise and share available data and make the right decisions based on data evidence. He also mentioned about the associated regulation to conform with cybersecurity and privacy laws when it comes to data sharing. Dr. Polawat shared the same sentiment and added that education and knowledge about how to make use of data efficiently and effectively is necessary if we aim to establish data sharing centers among both private and public sectors.
Digitalisation Experience within Private Sector
Subsequent discussions had Thai enterprise leaders share their experiences in driving digitalisation within organisations, including:
- Dr. Pichairat Jiranunrat, Director of Robotics AI and Intelligent Solution Project of PTT highlighted that collaboration is needed between humans and robots and the complementary nature between them. He felt that, in Thailand, digital technologies will not be able to take over humans’ work entirely in the near future.
- Kosit Suksingha, Executive Vice President of Thai Beverage shared that ROI is no longer a simple financial indication, but also refers to the level of competitiveness or cost reduction – enterprises need to define a clear goal and objective before embarking on digitalisation as technology cannot solve all the problems faced.
- Thossanporn Petporee, Senior Vice President – Business Development, Charoen Pokphand Foods commented that enterprises should not define ROI at the very beginning when the use of technology is still at the immature stage, but rather include ROI indications at the stage where the technology implementation has proven to be viable.
- Jareeporn Jarukornsakul, Chief Executive Officer of WHA Corporation highlighted the significance of how changes in people’s mindsets will become an important factor to determine the success of digital transformation.
Solution Partners Contributing to Digital Thailand
Technology solution providers added dimension to the discussions. Anothai Wettayakorn, Vice President, Asia Emerging Markets (AEM) & South Asia Consumer Business, Dell EMC, emphasised on sustainability and safety as the key foundation of a smart city, which led to a statement that cybersecurity needs to be embedded in each and every digital infrastructure. “Digital cities without cybersecurity cannot be called Smart Cities”, he said. Other partners including Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Fujitsu, SAS, N’osairis Technology Solutions shared their respective case studies applicable to Thai market.
We look forward to more discussions within the smart city and retail sectors on Day 2. If you’re interested to learn more details about the sessions and topics presented at the event, please leave a comment below or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
1 August 2019