Thai banks shutting branches amid digital surge
THE current dynamic digital era is starting to impact Thai banking with commercial banks beginning to shut branches as more of their business goes online and most closures are occurring right here in Bangkok, Thai News Agency said today (March 22).
Somboon Chitphentom, Bank of Thailand assistant governor in charge of Financial Institutions Policy Group, said from 2016 till the first quarter of this year Thai commercial banks have been shutting down more branches than opening new ones because the behavior and lifestyle of consumers have changed.
These banks have also brought in many types of new technology to meet the needs of their clients and they can now conduct online banking at low cost.
They have also started improving their branches particularly ensuring that the size is suitable for the location and are easily accessible such as in community malls. Staff have also been trained to be multi-skilled.
As of February this year there were a total of 6,980 bank branches in Thailand, down 80 from February 2016’s total of 7,060 branches.
The biggest drop was in Bangkok with 38 branches shut down and the total dropping from 2,169 to 2,131.
Next is the Central region with 17 closures, down from 2,230 to 2,213; followed by the North with 10 shut down, down from 842 to 832; Northeast 7 closures, down from 961 to 954; and lastly the South with 8 closures, down from 858 to 850.
Top: An attractive graphic of the Internet at Madrid Barajas International Airport. Photo: Miniyo73 (CC-BY-SA-2.0)