A new research paper, Innovative Policy Approaches to Thailand’s Digital Economy, which examined the impact of Over-the-Top (OTT) video platforms on Thailand’s economy, estimates that in 2020, local OTT players created 45,106 jobs and contributed USD1.4 billion (THB 46.7 billion) in economic value – approximately 0.3% of total Thai gross domestic product (GDP). Each baht invested in the OTT video industry drove the Thai economy by 2.67 baht. The research paper, which was developed by the Thammasat University Research and Consultancy Institute and commissioned by the Asia Internet Coalition (AIC), reinforced the crucial economic role of OTT platforms, and offered innovative policy approaches to support and promote the growth of Thailand’s digital economy.
The research team reviewed global best practices and recommended industry self-regulation to ensure that government oversight is aligned with the rapid evolution of OTT businesses and supports the industry’s growth. Transparency in the self-regulation process can be enhanced by making public self-regulatory guidelines and the process by which OTT providers address complaints lodged. This allows consumers to determine if providers are adhering to the guidelines and adequately addressing complaints according to these guidelines. Any industry self-regulation committee should include industry experts and other stakeholders to prevent collusion between members. The research team also recommended providing incentives to encourage industry participation, such as tax incentives and public recognition to companies who are committed to self-regulation.