Domestic demand and tourism push Thai industrial sentiment to 4-year high

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FTI Chairman Kriengkrai Thiennukul told a news conference that positive factors include China’s border opening and the lower costs of raw materials.

Thailand’s industrial sentiment in February reached its highest level in 47 months, bolstered by a rebound in domestic demand and tourism, but weak exports remain a concern.

The Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) said its industries sentiment index rose to 96.2 in February from 93.9 in January, marking a return to pre-pandemic levels.



The government said the tourism sector – a key driver of Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy – is expected to see 25-30 million foreign tourists this year, after beating its target in 2022 with 11.15 million visitors.

FTI Chairman Kriengkrai Thiennukul told a news conference that positive factors include China’s border opening and the lower costs of raw materials.



The FTI’s index, which projects industrial sentiment over the next three months, also increased in February.
The group urged the government to avoid any disruption in public spending when Thailand holds a general election in May.



The group said industry was still concerned about falling exports as global demand weakened at a time of high global interest rates and inflation as well as currency volatility.

Exports, also a key driver of Thai growth, dropped for a fourth straight month in January as global demand weakened. The FTI expects exports to be flat or fall up to 1% this year. (NNT)