BANGKOK, 28 June 2011 – The Office of Industrial Economics (OIE) has reported a 3.88 percent decrease in the Manufacturing Production Index (MPI) in May 2011 due to production slowdowns in many industries, especially automotive.
According to OIE Director-General Suttinee Poopaka, the MPI for May 2011 dropped 3.88 percent from the same month of last year to settle at 177.83 with the capacity utilization rate of 58.66 percent. The index has been on the decline for four consecutive months since February, which is contributed by sluggishness in some industries, such as automobile, frozen and canned seafood and garment and textile.
Given the data, the OIE is considering adjusting down its initial estimate for the MPI expansion of 6-8 percent for the whole year. In addition, the target for the industrial GDP growth of 5.5-6 percent might also be lowered by 0.5-1 percent.
The index is expected to make a rebound in the third and fourth quarters of the year as the car production sector is recovering and will likely achieve its target of 1.8 million units by year end.
However, Ms Suttinee pointed out that negative factors in the latter half of the year would include the political atmosphere after the election as well as the new government’s formation and policies, especially the minimum wage increase, which she said could affect national budgets and industrial expansion.