Thailand’s Industrial Confidence Index up in December

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BANGKOK, Jan 18 — Thailand’s Industrial Confidence Index in December rose to 93.7 in from 87.5 in November, indicating signs of a good industrial recovery after the country’s worst flood crisis in decades, according to a survey conducted among 1,034 industrial entrepreneurs by the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI).

FTI Chairman Payungsak Chartsuthipol on Wednesday announced that the rising index was attributed to growing purchase and sales orders, production quantity and profits.

As the flooding situation in a number of zones has returned to normal, the industrial sector, particularly the automotive and auto spare parts industries, gradually resumed operations, Mr Payungsak explained, adding that main transportation routes which now are passable again after the floods, supported the logistics and supply chain systems.

Although the rising index was a good indication of recovery, the December index, which was below the benchmark of 100, meant that entrepreneurs continued confident in their own businesses, the FTI president said, reasoning that so far some entrepreneurs were unable to resume operations because their plants were hard hit by the inundation which had to take some time for the recovery.

Meanwhile, the industrial confidence index in the next three months was projected to edge up to 106.3, from 104.5 forecast in November.

The projected increase was because industrial entrepreneurs believed that total purchase and sales orders, productions, production cost and profits would rise.

Most entrepreneurs suggested that the government should speed up stimulating the country’s post-flood economy, but the Bt300 (US$10) national daily minimum wage policy implementation should be put on hold as well as the price hike for energy used in the industrial sector.

In addition, they urged the government to balance water resource management for both the agricultural and industrial sectors, Mr Payungsak said.