31 May 2023
World Bank: Thailand Monthly Economic Monitor summary
The economy is moderately expanding as consumption grows with support from the recovering tourism and labour market. In contrast, manufacturing production and exported goods were in decline due to the decline in external demand.
Tourism has picked up from the previous months with a higher number of Chinese visitors and tour groups. There is also an increase in visitors from India, ASEAN, and Europe.
Exported goods in March 2023 had the lowest rate compared to the other months of the year, but Thailand is still performing reasonably well compared to the neighbouring countries in Asia.
Inflation rate decreases due to wide-range price reductions with lower core and raw food inflation. On the other hand, the energy price inflation increases. As a result of the decline in global oil prices, the government imposes caps on energy prices to alleviate inflation.
Fiscal deficit decreases but as the government introduces the cost-of-living support measure, the deficit will remain high. Measures such as electricity price caps would require government subsidies from the central budget. The government also impose a tax cut on diesel to help with the increasing oil price.
The government suggested four measures for tax reform: 1) reviewing tax structure; 2) adjusting the system with digital economy; 3) tax reduction for the environmentally friendly activities, and 4) fairer tax approach. These goals will accelerate fiscal consolidation under the medium-term budgetary plan.
Thai Baht appreciates in line with the Nominal Effective Exchange Rate as a result of the rise in account surplus. The causes of the surplus were reduction in oil imports and an increase in tourism in the past months.
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