BoT: 2011 GDP anticipated at 4.1%


BANGKOK, 19 July 2011  – The Bank of Thailand (BoT) expects that the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is likely to grow 4.1% this year; however, negative factors that may affect the economy remain worrying in the latter half.

Speaking in a seminar entitled “Thai Economic Direction after 3 July Election”, BoT Governor Prasarn Trairatvorakul said the country’s economic expansion in the latter half of this year would be close to that in the first half.

Nevertheless, there are many concerning factors such as higher inflation rate and economic uncertainty in the US and European countries. Moreover, estimated spending of the new government on such policies as crop mortgaging scheme, living cost reduction, salary increase for officials, and social welfare management, must be monitored closely.

Regarding the construction of additional sky trains and other rail transportation systems, the governor admitted that the matter is likely to benefit the country in the long term; however, the annual budget allocation is worrying, and the public debt may be driven up if the new government is not careful with spending.

Mr Prasarn hence suggested that the new government should downgrade its financial policies in a bid to relieve pressure on the national inflation while the minimum wage should be increased gradually to 300 baht per day, so that the private sector has time to adjust itself.