BANGKOK, 15 June 2012 – The Deputy Prime Minister in charge of the economy has indicated that the attempt to stabilize the baht value in preparation for the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) must be carried out in line with the global trade situation.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Kittiratt Na Ranong said that once the AEC is established, Thailand will have more trade partners as well as competitors, given many ASEAN neighbours produce the same export products as Thailand. Thus, the baht value will become a crucial factor to give the country an edge against its competitors. However, Thai exports do not rely solely on ASEAN countries; exports to Europe and America account for 10% of the country’s total exports. Therefore, an appropriate stabilization of the national currency must be made with relation to the global trade situation.
The Ministry of Finance and the Bank of Thailand have agreed that the baht value should be stabilized at an apt level in order to create an equilibrium in trade. The Deputy Prime Minsiter pointed out that a proper baht value depends on the price and trade mechanisms. If Thailand is at an advantage in trade activities, the baht value will become stronger; if Thailand is losing in the competition, the baht will depreciate. However, he added that the BoT will closely monitor the currency exchange rate.
Mr. Kittiratt said that at present there is yet to be any cause for concern. He added that the economic crisis of 1997 is a proof that inappropriate intervention in the currency exchange rate can produce disastrous outcomes.