Thailand: Business upbeat in face of inundation – 2 Aug 2017

  • Top business groups are maintaining their economic growth forecast of 3.5-4% in 2017, assuming that flash floods ravaging some northeastern provinces will result in limited economic damage, says the Joint Standing Committee on Commerce, Industry and Banking (JSCCIB).
  • The Thai Chamber of Commerce is also monitoring the impact on the service industry, while some banks have launched measures to ease the financial burden on flood-affected customers.
  • Typically, the financial measures include rescheduling of debt payments, monthly instalment payment reduction, grace periods for principle and interest repayment and credit line extensions, he said.
  • Mr Predee, who is also chairman of the Thai Bankers’ Association (TBA), said the flood-affected customers, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises, could fail to repay loans, but this would not drive up banks’ non-performing loans (NPLs) significantly, while financial institutions have instruments to manage their asset quality.
  • In another development, Federation of Thai Industries chairman Chen Namchaisiri said the baht, which has strengthened at a faster pace than other regional currencies, is worrying some corners of the private sector, as it could cripple export growth.

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