Thai GDP forecast to grow more than 4% next year

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BANGKOK, Nov 26 —   The Finance Ministry is confident that the Thai economy will grow by more than 4 per cent due mainly to government investment, but warns that monetary and capital markets will show increasing fluctuation next year.

Ekniti Nitithanprapas, deputy director general of the Fiscal Policy Office (FPO), said the Thai gross domestic product was predicted to grow by 4.1 per cent next year because the growth rate was low this year and the global economy would pick up, though with some uncertainty.

He advised that Thailand increase its marketing campaigns in the United States, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam. Thai exports should increase by 3.5 per cent next year.

Mr Ekniti said the government must speed up its spending to stimulate the economy, especially in the first quarter of next year.

He also called for quick disbursement of state enterprise budgets totaling more than Bt290 billion.

The FPO official said that money and equity markets would increasingly fluctuate next year because there would be two directions of global monetary policies.

The US economy was improving, and its interest rates will rise and that will draw money back to the US and result in a US dollar appreciation.

Meanwhile, European countries, Japan and China will ease their monetary policies to handle their weak economies.

These actions will raise the value of Thai baht against both the euro and yen currencies.

Mr Ekniti warned exporters and importers to consider their moves carefully.