BANGKOK – During a censorship debate targeting Prime Minister and Defense Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha, Pheu Thai Party opposition MP for Maha Sarakham Suthin Khlangsaeng said the public debt The country’s high level is attributable to the government’s failure to solve economic problems. However, several factors have affected the Thai economy for many years, including strict trade measures, technological advancements and drought, all of which have weakened the purchasing power of the people. The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the lives of people around the world, but the Thai government continues to roll out measures to stimulate the national economy during this crisis.
The Thai economy has been affected by a number of uncontrollable factors in recent years. The trade war between the global economic superpowers, China and the United States (United States), has resulted in sluggish global growth, penalizing Thai exports (World Bank 2016 + 3.4% 2017 + 3.8% 2018+ 3.6% 2019 + 2.9%). Thailand is one of the major exporters of information technology (IT), electronics, and circuit board products to China.
At the end of 2019, the United States revoked the benefits of the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) for 573 Thai products. Thailand’s export sector has suffered further blows after the United States suspended GSP benefits for 231 Thai products last year.
In addition, Thai exporters have been affected by the continued appreciation of the Thai baht. The currency’s strength was attributed to Thailand’s large current account surplus and foreign exchange reserves, supported by a strong economic base.
Some business and industrial sectors have not been able to keep pace with technological change, which has slowed the transition process.
Nevertheless, the government continues to actively implement measures to support the economy, starting with providing low-income people with state welfare cards, offering crop price guarantees to help farmers and improving the liquidity of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), to ensure smooth business operations. The government is also helping to boost tourism spending through its Chim Shop Chai (Taste, Shop, Spend) program, aimed at injecting more capital into the local economy.
Although the drought has undermined some of these efforts, the government continues to direct its human and financial resources to long-term assistance to those affected.
Various measures resulted in economic growth in 2019 (Thai economic growth in 2019 Q1 + 2.8% Q2 + 2.3% Q3 + 2.4% Q4 + 1.6%), but the unexpected appearance of the COVID-19 has resulted in a nationwide lockdown and travel restrictions, affecting tourism, trade and investment around the world. The negative effects on the Thai economy cannot be avoided.
The government has done its best to keep the situation stable and stimulate the Thai economy amid the global crisis. (NNT)