Thailand’s State Monetary and Fiscal Policy Committee has decided to raise the ceiling of the public debt-to-GDP ratio from 60% to 70%, which will allow further public sector borrowing to rehabilitate the economy battered by COVID-19.
Finance Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith said the decision is intended to provide the government with more fiscal maneuverability should the need arise for the government to borrow more money to carry out medium-term financial policies.
He said the ministry will propose the new limit at Tuesday’s Cabinet meeting and assured that the government still has the ability to repay debts. The government has, so far, borrowed 1.5 trillion baht to fund COVID-19 relief and stimulus programs, 500 billion baht of which was approved this year.
Mr. Arkhom said the raising of the ceiling is in line with Section 50 of the 2018 State Fiscal and Financial Discipline Act, which authorizes the committee to revise the ratio every three years. The committee is made up of representatives from the Finance Ministry, Bank of Thailand, the National Economic and Social Development Council and the Budget Bureau. (NNT)