Pattaya Daily News

01 September 2006 :: 01:09:30 am 30044

Thai economy likely to pick up in 2008-2009

BANGKOK, Aug 31 - The Thai economy is likely to pick up in 2008-2009 with a growth rate of 5-6 per cent, bolstered up by the expected recovery of state and private spending, according to the Ministry of Finance‘s Fiscal Policy Office (FPO).
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FPO‘s Director-General Naris Chaiyasoot said on Wednesday the Thai economy this year is projected to expand 4.5 per cent driven by increased exports due to improvement in economies of trading partners although the domestic consumption and investment is projected to drop.

Next year, the Thai economy is forecast to grow at a slower pace to around 3.5-4.5 per cent as a result of the global economic slowdown and a delay in the budget disbursement in fiscal 2007.

He said the country‘s economy this year would be mainly driven by external factors such as an increase in the exports of products and services to 8.8 per cent per annum from 4.3 per cent last year.

It is also expected that the local tourism will recover from a repercussion of the legacy of tsunami disaster in late 2004.

The country‘s imports are projected to grow 2.4 per cent, down from 9.4 per cent in the previous year, since the import volume of crude oil, steel and airplanes is unusually high.

The current account balance this year is anticipated to be in surplus of US$600 million or 0.3 per cent of the country‘s gross domestic product (GDP) against the deficit of US$3.7 billion or 2 per cent of the GDP last year.

The expected improvement in the current account balance is attributed to the recovery of tourism and a continue increase in exports.

He said the export and service-based driving force is believed to weaken next year along with a slowdown in economies of trading partners.

This, when coupled with a delay in the budget disbursement, will make the Thai economy expand only 3.5-4.5 per cent in 2007.

For 2008-2009, Mr. Naris said the Thai economy is expected to recover and grow around 5-6 per cent, boosted by domestic demand, especially state and private investment.

The current account balance is projected to be in small deficit of 0.9-1.9 per cent of GDP in 2008 and 1.2-2.2 per cent of GDP in 2009 due to an increase in investment for national development.

The general inflation rate in 2008-2009 is likely to stay close to that of 2007 at 3-4 per cent per annum.

Reporter : PDN staff   Photo : Internet   Category : Politics News

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