According to a survey conducted by the University of Thai Chamber of Commerce’s (UTCC) Institute of Trade Strategies, business owners are optimistic about Thailand’s economic growth prospects this year.
The poll found that business operators expect the economy to grow by over 3% in 2023, driven by an expected increase in the number of Chinese tourists visiting the kingdom and money circulation from the general election.
The survey involved business operators nationwide, 76% of whom run small businesses in various sectors, including services, trades, industries and agriculture. Respondents indicated that their business performance was similar to that of last year, but they expect prospects to improve within the next six months, ultimately returning to pre-pandemic levels.
The further easing of the disease control restrictions has allowed for an improvement in business and economic activities. The tourism sector is meanwhile recovering amid the return of Chinese tourists, while the general election is expected to boost cash flow.
However, respondents also cautioned that the business sector still needs to navigate inflation, minimum wage hikes and volatile energy prices, which affect business expenses.
Nevertheless, those surveyed projected that the Thai economy would grow by 3.35 to 3.82%, or 3.42% on average, in 2023. Intense campaigning during the general election is also expected to put 100 to 120 billion baht into circulation during the months April and May, boosting overall GDP growth by 0.5 to 0.7%. (NNT)