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New Covid-19 wave could cause the Thai economy to lose 100 billion baht per month

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Photo via National News Bureau of Thailand

With more than 18,000 Covid-19 cases in 22 days, the new wave of infections may have a dramatic impact on the Thai economy… possibly a 100 billion baht loss per month, according to the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce.

They say the outbreak is likely to primarily impact the service sector and the number of workers is expected to drop. With pay cuts and layoffs due to the outbreak, household debt could rise to 92% of GDP, according to the university president Thanavath Phonvichai. At the end of 2020, debt hit a record high of 89.3% of GDP.

Thanavath says gross domestic profit is expected to drop by 1.2% to 1.8%, but with economic stimulus measures, the economy could grow 1.2% to 1.6% this year.

“If there will be economic stimulus measures, the economy may grow 1.2% to 1.6% this year.”

The number of active cases making up a third of Thailand’s total reported cases since the start of the pandemic last year. The new wave of cases is expected to be under control within the next 2 to 3 months.

SOURCE: Reuters

 

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13 Comments

13 Comments

  1. Avatar

    toby andrews

    Thursday, April 22, 2021 at 8:36 pm

    Ah well. Thailand had 20 years of foreigners’ investments and tourism.
    They killed the golden goose.
    I hope they did not spend all the money they made, and held some back for lean times, which is now.

  2. Avatar

    Pippo

    Thursday, April 22, 2021 at 9:03 pm

    18000 asymptomatics closed in field hospitals to spread panic between population. The most idiotic move that will terminate the country.
    Toast!

  3. Avatar

    Rasputin

    Friday, April 23, 2021 at 12:13 am

    They don’t know what hard times really are, but they are coming this way, probably much sooner than they expect.

  4. Avatar

    Paul

    Friday, April 23, 2021 at 2:38 am

    Moderation?

  5. Avatar

    Ted

    Friday, April 23, 2021 at 7:48 am

    From a GDP increase of 10% [estimations in the beginning of 2021] down till a decrease of bla bla BUT with printing of fiat, let’s save the country from from a recession … something like that, right???

    THAILAND YOU ARE NOT ALONE LIVING WITH THE HARDSHIPS OF C19 BUT UNFORTUNATELY YOU CAN’T FIGHT IT ALONE, you ABSOLUTELY need help from abroad because your leaders never [has] looked further than their own noses.

  6. Avatar

    Dreqo

    Friday, April 23, 2021 at 7:54 am

    The Red Locust swarm is approaching with much glee.

  7. Avatar

    Ben

    Friday, April 23, 2021 at 8:17 am

    And you want to open up the country? Those of you that minimize this and call it the flu are inhuman and don’t understand that it won’t get anybody more money because people are not going to come out and spend and act normal with the virus all around them and no vaccination. The same people are pooh poohing vaccines which the only way to get to herd immunity without tens of millions more full body bags world-wide. Better economics will only come when the virus is under control.

    The Thai government blew it by allowing Hi-So partying and poor vaccination management. This is a setback that the article correctly states will cost Thailand a lot of money. Again, fix the virus situation and the money will come. There are no shortcuts.

    Look at India, Brazil, France and the entire developing world. Look at the Wikipedia page under “2021 Deaths” and you’ll see COVID-19 as the leading cause of death among notable people. Thailand doesn’t want 127,000 dead bodies from COVID like they have in the UK (and that’s with the UK shutting down for most of the pandemic) or more if it’s completely wide open.

  8. Avatar

    toby andrews

    Friday, April 23, 2021 at 12:01 pm

    @Ted –
    Their Pinocchio noses Ted, which is quite a long way to look.

  9. Avatar

    MichaelBKK

    Friday, April 23, 2021 at 1:01 pm

    @Ben – You clearly only follow the mainstream media over in the uk. The ONS recently announced that a quarter of those ‘COVID deaths’ had been wrongly put down to COVID so makes you wonder how many more of them are inaccurate? Deaths are always with a positive COVID test and not directly FROM COVID so pretty misleading ? I think around 40% of those ‘COVID deaths’ were people at the end of there life or extremely ill due to other health issues who only tested positive AFTER being admitted into hospitals ! Hospitals over in the uk are disease and virus ridden so whilst being in a hospital if I’ll can be the best place for you but at the same time it can also be the worst place for you which is very sad and I have personal family experience from this. Now this SAGE bunch that most people think are the experts are actually made up of behavioural physiologists and not scientific and virus experts they just predict doomsday outcomes and when they are well out they take credit for locking down the country to avoid there doomsday predictions . They predicted cases and deaths would rise when schools returned in early March well that didn’t happen they actually went the other way not to mention the graphs and figures they produced on live tv back in November but once that was picked apart by actual real experts was massively adjusted a day later and never mentioned again ! So you carry on fearing for your life every breath you take or you could actually look at real facts and evidence from people who know what there talking about !!!

  10. Avatar

    Ben

    Friday, April 23, 2021 at 4:06 pm

    MichaelBKK – I’m not fearing for my life and have had my 2 jabs of Pfizer. There are no doubt some people that would have lived less than a year more and were given a push by COVID. There are also a lot of dead people that would have lived decades more.

    I’m pretty sure you’re not listening to the virus experts or you wouldn’t minimize COVID deaths. The asian countries are pretty united in their approach to this thing and it’s not the “It’s just the flu and all those deaths are people that would have died anyway approach”. That appears to be a farang country approach.

    I personally know 5 people that have passed from COVID. Each one of them was vigorous and in no danger of short-term death until COVID came knocking on their door. Chew on that.

  11. Avatar

    James R

    Sunday, April 25, 2021 at 4:00 am

    MichaelBKK

    You said”, I think around 40% of those ‘COVID deaths’ were people at the end of there life…”

    So that means 60% were not at the end of their life if we are to believe you figures, do you not think that 60% is not significant?

    If you are in BKK as your name suggest then be careful as the virus is now at an exponential grow rate in Thailand and may be coming to a place near you very soon.

    You will have to have a full lock down to control that, not the half hearted measure which are now in place there.

  12. Avatar

    MichaelBKK

    Monday, May 3, 2021 at 7:52 pm

    @Ben – Think you need to reread carefully when your not angry if you could manage that ? Those stats are not mine actually the office for national statistics over in the uk . Switch off bbc or sky news and try and educate yourself a little maybe you might see things slightly differently . You may need to top up your oxygen tank if running low benny .

  13. Avatar

    MichaelBKK

    Monday, May 3, 2021 at 8:00 pm

    @James R – You need to have a read back and actually try and understand what I mentioned it’s so hard to try and educate people who only follow the main stream media and believe it must all be gospel ! The so called virus has been here in Thailand since late 2019 so not sure why you think that and as for a full lockdown to suppress the virus you really have no understanding of science?

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Economy

Stimulus package gives more back the more you spend

Neill Fronde

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PHOTO: A new stimulus package aims to get the middle class spending. (via Flickr - Marco Verch)

A new stimulus package targeting middle and high-income people aims at increasing spending by offering more e-voucher the more you spend. Ying Chai Ying Dai, which translates to “the more you spend the more you get”, will reward those who spend between 46,000 and 70,000 baht with a 7,000 baht e-voucher. This part of the government’s 225 billion baht stimulus package hopes to encourage 4 million qualifying middle- to upper-class people to spend more money by refunding 10-15% back, according to the Finance Ministry’s Fiscal Policy Office.

People wishing to participate must register and make their purchases through a government e-wallet system. The system works by refunding 10 to 15% of purchases with a maximum of 7,000 baht. So at 15%, a person who spent 46,000 baht would receive back the full 7,000. On the 10% scheme, 70,000 baht in spending would be necessary to reach 7,000 cashback. No details were available on what determines the percentage level.

An additional 2,000 baht will be available for people participating in the “Section 33 Rao Rak Kan” and “Rao Chana” scheme. The plans are expected to push 85.5 billion Baht back into the economy as recipients must spend the cash by the end of June.

The 50/50 stimulus program that has been popular with the government covering half of what people spend for half for food, drink, and other items up to 150 baht per person per day will also be expanded. That plan began on October 23, and ended at the end of 2020, covering 10 million people with each receiving 3000 baht. The second phase of the popular program added 5 million more people and raised the limit to 3,500 baht per person.

A third phase of the “Khon La Khrueng” stimulus plan is expected to begin in July with participants getting a maximum of 3,500 baht each to spend, and opening the program to 16 million new people. This massive expansion though will stipulate that anyone participating in this program cannot also participate in the Ying Chai Ying Dai scheme.

All of these cash and voucher benefits aimed at supporting vulnerable groups, along with cash handouts for people who have state welfare cards, are part of 245 billion baht the government is spending in an attempt to keep the economy from collapsing. This falls under an emergency loan decree allocating the government 1 trillion baht total to cope with Covid-19.

SOURCE: The Phuket News

 

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Economy

Thailand increases durian exports to China by 14% this year

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Thailand has exported 14% more durian to China in this year’s first quarter over the same period last year. The Trade Negotiations Department Director General says Thai durian auctions in the first quarter secured 186 million, making up 88% of the total amount of Thai durian exports to world markets.

Last year, Thailand exported US1.5 billion worth of durian to China, a 78% increase from 2019. China’s share accounted for 73% of total Thai durian exports to world markets. 18 countries have free trade agreements for fruit with Thailand. Thailand is actively exporting fresh fruit with its top buyers being Australia, Chile, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Singapore. The most popular fruits are the national delicacy of durian, along with mango, mangosteen and longan.

Despite the increases in durian exports, farmers have been worried about Covid-19′s effect on the industry. Earlier in 2021 health authorities in China circulated a press release stating that imported cherries from Chile had been tested and found to have Covid-19 contamination. This statement prompted a huge drop in Chilean cherry prices. Thai growers are worried the same might happen to durian imports. As the seriousness of the Coronavirus in Thailand reaches new widespread levels, one instance of a durian container being linked to Covid-19 could spur a total ban on importing fruit from Thailand.

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SOURCE: MENAFN

 

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Economy

GDP forecast dropped to 1-2% with best, middle and worst case scenarios

Neill Fronde

Published

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FILE PHOTO: Economic predictions continue to fall with Covid-19 spread and slow vaccination.

Mass vaccination will be the key stop the slump in economic growth after the Bank of Thailand revised their 2021 GDP forecast to between 1 – 2%. They had previously estimated a 3% growth in the gross domestic product but are now creating tiered predictions of a base level, worse situation, and a worst-case scenario, according to the Bank of Thailand’s Monetary Policy Committee.

The base GDP forecast, which you could call a best-case scenario, expects a 2% growth predicated on some rosy numbers like foreign tourism growing to 1.2 million people and unemployment staying around 2.7 million. It also operates on the assumption that Thailand reaches 100 million vaccines distributed by the end of the year which would allow herd immunity by the beginning of 2022.

The middle ground prediction is a 1.5% GDP growth if 64.6 million vaccines are administered, delaying herd immunity to the third quarter of 2022. It also allows for unemployment to grow by another 100,000 people, and tourism to reach only 1 million foreign visitors. If we don’t get this tourism growth and unemployment and underemployment expands to 2.9 million or above, and we distribute less than 64.4 million jabs, the worst-case scenario would be only a 1% GDP growth and herd immunity not being possible until the end of 2022 at the earliest.

The worst-case scenario would be a 5.7% drop in the GDP this year, a loss of 890 billion baht. The middle ground forecast would cost about 460 billion Baht, about a 3% drop in Thailand GDP.

The BOT had originally forecast stronger GDP growth but reduced from 3.2% to 3% before dropping their predictions to the 1% to 2% figure. With the devastating effect of the third wave of Covid-19 being much more far-reaching than originally expected, this new prediction was released now instead of when it was scheduled in June. They did state that government economic stimulus packages could still have a positive effect and allow the economy to grow 3 to 5.7%, assuming mass vaccination goes into effect quickly.

The tourism sector and small-to-medium-sized enterprises would be the most affected by the delays in vaccination. The Monetary Policy Committee stressed that the economy hinges on the speedy importing and administering of vaccines. Faster vaccination will prevent mutations, new strains, and new outbreaks, as well as allowing international borders to fully reopen more quickly and more successfully. They stress that government efforts to support the economy must continue as the government has recently announced they will extend cash stimulus programs and allot money to more low-income assistance.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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