Industrial sentiment index plunges for 3 consecutive months

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BANGKOK, 18 April 2013 (NNT) – The Thai Industrial Sentiment Index (TISI) in March 2013 dropped for the third consecutive month to 93.5 largely due to the baht appreciation and high energy prices.

Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) Chairman Payungsak Chartsutthipol said the March TISI decreased by 2 points from 95.5 in February after the baht appreciated by as high as 5-6%. Apart from the strong baht and the increasing energy prices, concerns over an energy shortage during Myanmar’s closure of gas pipelines in April had also contributed to the lower index, the chairman said.

Other factors influencing the March TISI included the drought situation in the North and Northeast and worries about the global economic recovery.

The FTI chairman added that the sentiment index for the next three months was projected at 99.3.

According to Mr Payungsak, private entrepreneurs currently want the government to try to prevent the baht from appreciating more than the competitors’ currencies while also promoting energy saving and consumption of alternative energies in the industrial sector and helping them tackle production-related problems.