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Thailand Awaits $300 Crypto Airdrop Pledged By New Prime Minister

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Thailand is waiting to see whether newly elected Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin will make good on a campaign promise to airdrop about $300 worth of digital currency to some 50 million citizens.

During his campaign, Thavisin marketed himself as a pro-crypto politician looking to develop and improve the Asian country’s economy using crypto. Early in April, the politician promised Thai people that if his political party, Ptheu Thai, won the general election, the government would airdrop 10,000 baht in digital currency to every citizen in the country who is 16 or older.

According to a report by Bangkok Post, the Pheu Thai party’s crypto initiative is aimed at attracting crypto assets and blockchain innovation to Thailand. If the promise was honored, all recipients would be required to spend the money within a “4-kilometer community radius within six months” of the project’s first phase.

Thavisin’s promise attracted mixed reactions with several local stakeholders referring to the action as a “gimmick.” Many critics have slammed the initiative for lacking transparency and not openly outlining the source of the funds to be used in the airdrop.

If Thavisin does execute the airdrop to about 50 million citizens who are 16 or older, it would cost the country approximately 500 billion Thai baht, or $14.3 billion.

Some have questioned whether airdropping crypto would be a good way to spend money rather than using it to address issues like poverty.

A minister from the prime minister’s office, Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana, expressed his worries about the truthfulness of the planned airdrop and even requested more details. According to him, a digital currency would present significant challenges and have an impact on Thailand’s whole financial system.

A Crypto Future for Thailand

Others argue that this is a step in the right direction toward developing Thailand’s economy and positioning it as a fintech powerhouse for Asia. Considering that Thavisin has been an active Bitcoin investor and has taken a favorable attitude toward the technology, his selection as prime minister has been interpreted as a sign of hope for the future of cryptocurrencies in Thailand.

His election has sparked conversations about the potential uses and benefits that cryptocurrencies could bring to Thailand. While it is yet to be determined whether there will be a national airdrop or not, it is likely that Thavisin will spearhead the embrace of crypto and blockchain in the Asian country.

Thailand also may have embraced crypto had Thavisin not won because his rival, Pita Limjaroenrat, the leader of Thailand’s Move Forward Party, also expressed his interest and plans for crypto in Thailand.

According to a report by CoinDesk, Pita is a holder of Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), Cardano (ADA), as well as BNB. However, his total cryptocurrency holdings only amount to several thousand dollars and are a small portion of his total wealth.

Thavisin on the other side is more invested in crypto given his real estate company Sansiri took part in a $225 million fundraising round in 2021 for XSpring Capital, an investment management company that supports cryptocurrencies.

In 2022, XSpring went on to introduce a fully functional cryptocurrency trading platform. By 2025, the company wants to rank among the top three in the cryptocurrency exchange industry.

In addition to making Thailand a crypto hub, Pita also promised the Asian country change after nine years of being ruled by a former army chief.

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