Although Thailand’s economy remains on a clear recovery track, the Office of the National Economic and Social Development Council (NESDC) has revised its GDP forecast. The growth range revision from 2.5-3.5% to the 2.7-3.2% range came in response to the Russia-Ukraine conflict and policy rate increases by central banks.
NESDC Secretary-General Danucha Pichayanan said Thailand’s economy expanded by 2.5% in the 2nd quarter of this year. Growth in the first half, therefore, stood at 2.4%. The expansion came as a result of private sector spending and services exports. Mr. Danucha said the relaxation of disease control measures contributed positively to growth as this allowed people’s spending behavior to normalize. He also cited government-issued schemes promoting spending as having been contributors to growth.
The NESDC secretary-general said his office revised its 2022 GDP growth forecast from the 2.5-3.5% range to the 2.7-3.2% range. One factor leading to the revision was the prolonged Russia-Ukraine conflict and its effect on oil and natural gas prices volatility, as well as raw material prices. Renewed disputes between the United States, Taiwan, and China may also bring about a new round of sanctions that would impact the global economy.
Nonetheless, Mr. Danucha noted there are clear signals for the recovery of Thailand’s economy for the remainder of this year. He said economic activity has returned to a level resembling that before the pandemic. Revenue from foreign tourists is now expected to reach 600 billion baht this year, instead of an earlier forecast of 500 billion baht. The NESDC now expects 9.5 million foreign tourists to enter Thailand this year. (NNT)