The Thai National Shippers’ Council (TNSC) has announced that the country’s exports are projected to grow between 1% and 2% this year, unchanged from previous forecasts, due to a slowing demand globally.
TNSC Chairperson Chaichan Chareonsuk pointed out that shipments, a significant contributor to economic growth, are also faced with high currency volatility.
Despite some negative factors, the council sees positive indications of China’s economic recovery. The group said exports are expected to decline by 3.7% in Q1 of 2023 compared to the same period last year, though they are predicted to recover in the second quarter with a 0.7% dip and post gains in the latter half of the year.
According to Chaichan, exporters are hoping for the baht to hover around 34-35 per dollar in order to improve trade competitiveness and align with other regional currencies. Although the baht experienced a sharp drop on Monday (6 Feb), it has still increased by 3% against the dollar in 2023 and is currently trading at around 33.6 to the greenback.
The shippers’ council is also calling on the central bank to maintain stability in the baht and to keep interest rates at appropriate levels. In 2022, customs-based exports saw a 5.5% increase. (NNT)