Thai Government acknowledges 4% growth target is unlikely

  • The government admits it will be difficult to reach its economic growth target of 4% in 2021 because of the latest surge of Covid-19 infections.
  • Deputy Prime Minister Supattanapong Punmeechaow said the fresh wave of infections has doomed the country’s recovery, making it highly unlikely the economy will grow by 4% in 2021 as projected by the government.
  • He said exports remain a bright spot and the government vows to maintain plans to roll out fresh measures to boost domestic consumption.
  • Mr Supattanapong said the government also aims to introduce measures to encourage cash-rich depositors to spend more to stimulate domestic consumption.
  • He said the government is still maintaining a plan to reopen Phuket.
  • In Jul 21, Phuket is expected to be the first province to waive the quarantine requirement for foreign visitors who have been vaccinated against Covid-19, as part of the government’s plan to reopen the country.
  • “Thai economic growth may not reach 4% as hoped, but the government needs to keep on working. There is a little room to reach 4%, and the government will keep attempting to get close to the target.”
  • He said the government also remains committed to continuing planned infrastructure development and stimulating government expenditure, which are likely the main contributors to the Thai economy in 2021.
  • A source from the Finance Ministry who requested anonymity said later in Apr 21 the Fiscal Policy Office (FPO) is scheduled to reassess its economic growth forecast for 2021.
  • In Jan 21, the FPO slashed the country’s economic growth forecast to 2.8%, down from a forecast of 4.5% made in Oct 20.
  • “Thailand’s economic growth this year depends largely on the arrival of foreign tourists and the government’s nationwide inoculation plans reaching their targets by Sep 21,” the source said.

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