BANGKOK — Despite its ongoing political turmoil, Thailand’s Dept. of Export Promotion hopes to position the Southeast Asian country as a hub for the entertainment industry, and has adopted the mantra “Thailand: The marketplace for the entertainment business.”

Unveiling details of this month’s inaugural Thailand Entertainment Expo, minister of commerce Chaiya Sasomsap expressed confidence the event will lift Thai companies’ competitiveness in the international marketplace.

“Our local talent is second to none in creativity and skills such as in editing and sound recording. Importantly, we offer affordable production costs,” he said. “The Expo 2008 will become our driver for trade and investment.”

The Expo, which features Thai TV, animation, film and music exhibitors, will take place Sept. 24-28 at the Royal Paragon Hall in downtown Bangkok. The first two days are reserved for bizzers, while the last days will be open to the public.

The Expo will also double as the film market for the Bangkok Film Festival, which takes place Sept. 23-30 at the neighboring SF World Cinema.

About 130 exhibitors are expected, including major Thai outfits such as TV production facilities group WorkPoint, music giant GMM Grammy, software promotion agency SIPA and local movie studios.