Thai exports in February rebound, grow nearly 1% year-on-year


BANGKOK, March 28 – Thailand’s exports in Feb rebounded by 0.91 per cent year-on-year, the first time in three months after last year’s catastrophic floods, Deputy Commerce Minister Phum Saraphol announced on Wednesday.

Thai exports in February were valued at US$19.03 billion, a growth of 0.91 per cent compared to the same period last year.

It is the first growth in three months, since Nov 2011, when the country was hit by the flood crisis, the deputy commerce minister said.

Exports of agricultural and agro-industrial products rose 4.8 per cent, frozen seafood 21.4 per cent, fruit and vegetables 7.2 per cent, chicken 23.7 per cent and sugar 94.5 per cent.

In contrast, exports of major industrial goods dropped 6.1 per cent with electrical appliances falling 6.5 per cent, and electronics 10.7 per cent.  However, auto parts and rubber products increased 15 per cent and 12 per cent respectively.

Exports in the first two months of this year were valued at US$34.77 billion, a 2.36 per cent drop.

Exports to major markets fell 5.3 per cent. A drop of 12.5 per cent was seen in exports to European markets, and 6.9 per cent to Japan but exports to the US increased four per cent.

Imports in February were valued at $18.5 billion, an increase of 8.25 per cent year-on-year.  Fuel imports rose 8 per cent, capital goods 19.9 per cent, consumer goods 35.4 per cent, vehicles and transportation equipment 9.6 per cent.

Meanwhile, imports of raw materials and unfinished goods dropped 5.7 per cent. Imports in January and February reached $35.37 billion, an increase of 1.94 per cent.

In February, Thailand enjoyed a trade surplus of $529.7 million but recorded a trade deficit of $597.4 million in the first two months of 2012.

The commerce ministry was confident that exports in March will continue to grow and the export growth target of 15 per cent in 2012 remains unchanged, the minister said.