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Survey says Thailand’s worker’s debt has hit a high after over a decade

Tara Abhasakun

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Flickr/ILO Asia-Pacific

A survey by the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce says the average debt of each worker’s household in Thailand is 217,000 baht this year. This is a 14 year high for Thailand. At the end of 2021, the country’s overall household debt was 14.6 trillion baht, one of the highest in Asia, per capita.

Most service sector workers were worried about losing jobs, according to the survey. The university’s president Thanavath Phonvichai said that if costs continue to rise, consumer spending will “disappear” and it will be “very difficult for the economy to recover”.

This news comes amidst rising prices on several items in Thailand. The price of diesel is set to rise from 30 to 32 baht per litre on Sunday (with a revised price cap by the government). Bangkok truckers have rallied this week to demand that the price cap continues as long as possible.

This week, rates on Thailand’s postal services also went up. In its 2020 report, Thailand Post said the agency has to operate over 5,000 post offices so that people can have adequate postal service, even though some offices only attracted low revenue. From now on, envelopes will cost 3-55 baht a piece in 2022 to 2024. They will cost 4-62 baht per piece from 2025 onwards. Postcards will cost 2 baht per piece from 2022 to 2024, and 3 baht per piece from 2025 onwards.

Cost on daily supermarket goods have been steadily rising over recent months and are now expected to rise more after the diesel cap has been lifted by 2 baht a liter.

After an outbreak of African Swine Flu in Thailand, the price of pork surged in January. A Thai official said there was a shortage of pigs in Thailand following the outbreak. Before it, there were 1.1 million breeding pigs on the market, but after the outbreak, that number dropped to 660,000.

SOURCE: Reuters

 

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    A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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