Retail, wholesale in Q2 continues slowing


Thailand’s retail and wholesale trading sector performance in Q2 continues to slow due to the ongoing political confusion bringing about lower purchasing power.

Piyawat Titasattavorakul, chairman of the Thai Chamber of Commerce’s Retail and Wholesale Business Committee, said he admitted the prolonged political protest has caused the general public and investors to lose confidence in their spending and investments.

He said commercial banks have also been more strict when giving out loans, while the inflation rate tends to rise, given the public’s debts and cost of living and that the inflation rate in March expanded 2.11 per cent, its highest in 9 months. Consequently, retail business in Q2 expanded only slightly by 2-3 per cent.

However, Mr Piyawat viewed that positive factors are from the fact that the world economy is picking up from increased border trade that welcomes the entry of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) in 2015 and that this will help promote private sector spending, thus push the Thai retail business in the second half of the year to recover and grow 5 per cent for this year.

If a new government cannot be formed by the end of the year, the chairman said the retail business would grow only 2 per cent.