Thailand: Growth expected to hold steady – 1 Aug 2017

  • Economic growth in the 2Q17 is expected to be close to the 1Q17 reading of 3.3% and accelerate to 3.7% in 2H17, says a senior Bank of Thailand official.
  • Don Nakornthab, senior director in the macroeconomic and monetary policy department at the central bank said that private consumption is expected to accelerate in the 2H17 while the low-base effect of tourist arrivals in the 4Q16 from the crackdown on illegal tour operations will help boost growth in the tourism sector in 2017.
  • However, merchandise exports, which grew stronger and broader-based in the 2Q17, are expected to slow down in 2H17, he added.
  • On a balance-of-payments basis, Thai merchandise export totalled USD112bn (THB3.74tr) in the 1H17, growing 7.4% y/y, while the growth in the 2H17 is expected to be only 2.7% due to the high base during the same period in 2016.
  • The Bank of Thailand earlier in Jul 17 lifted the country’s outbound shipment outlook to 5% for 2017 from 2.2% predicted in Mar 17.
  • In a related development, Mr Don said the Thai economy continued to expand in Jun 17, mainly supported by the broad-based expansion in merchandise exports and continued recovery in the tourism sector.

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