Bank of Thailand (BOT) officials have said Thailand’s headline inflation rate is expected to top the central bank’s forecast of 1.7% this year, but should remain within its target range.
They said inflation would exceed the BOT’s target range of 1-3% in early 2022 before falling in the second half of the year.
Senior Director Sakkapop Panyanukul said most economic indicators were largely in line with the BOT’s estimates so far this year, though there was an improvement in exports and a rise in inflation. In January, inflation jumped to a nine-month high of 3.23%.
The BOT has forecast economic growth of 3.4% this year, with exports rising 3.5%. It is due to update that data next month.
On Wednesday, the BOT left its key interest rate unchanged at a record low of 0.5% and ruled out an immediate need to adjust despite higher inflation and looming U.S. policy tightening.
The BOT reiterated that planned interest rate hikes from the U.S. Federal Reserve would have little impact on Thailand, as its external stability remains strong with high foreign reserves and low foreign debt.
Senior Director Surach Tanboon said Thailand’s monetary policy does not follow that of foreign countries, though the BOT would monitor global developments. (NNT)