BANGKOK, Sales of necessary items for offering to monks during this year’s Buddhist Lent have decreased from last year, and the problems of economic slowdown and drought are cited as the main reasons.
A survey has been conducted by related authorities on the spending behavior of Thai people who are observing the Buddhist Lent this year. It is found that, in the vicinity of the Giant Swing in Bangkok, retail shops selling monastic offerings are seeing a steady flow of customers; however, their number is significantly lower compared to the same period last year. The slump in sales is believed to have been caused by the sluggish economy, higher living expenses and reduced income.
Most offering sets are being sold at regular prices, ranging from 199-300 baht, while pricier ones are sold up to a thousand baht. All of them are found to carry proper labels displaying the price, manufacturing date and expiry date.
A similar atmosphere has been reported at the Pak Khlong Talat Market, the biggest flower market in Thailand. Vendors said this year’s supplies of such flowers as jasmine, lotus and marigold have decreased from last year due mainly to the drought crisis, which has also caused their prices to soar.