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BANGKOK, May 22 (TNA) – The Thai economy has already bottomed out and is on the path to recovery given improvements registered in many economic indicators, according to the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI).
FTI chairman Santi Vilassakdanont said foreign capital had begun to flow into Thailand, ASEAN, and Asia since investors wanted to invest in markets which they believed would give attractive returns, which he said was a definite sign of returning investor confidence.
He said exports in April shrank 26 per cent partly because there were many public holidays last month.
Mr. Santi said he believed exports in May and June would outpace those in April. The second half of this year would see the exports grow more than those in the first half.
The export situation would be even better in this year’s third and fourth quarters, he said, but noted that the strengthening of the baht was not good news for the export sector.
“Some exporters had sold products when the baht stayed at 35-36 to the US dollar. Their revenue has now declined due to the strengthening of the baht,” he said.
The FTI chief said he understood the Bank of Thailand’s efforts to supervise the baht value. However, he wanted the central bank to pay attention to the export sector as well.
Mr. Santi said the level at which he wanted the baht to stay now is 35-37 baht to the dollar.
He projected the exports for the whole year would contract more than 10 per cent in case the baht moves in a range of 35-36 to the dollar.
Should the baht continue strengthening over other currencies of trade competitors, he said, Thailand’s exports would shrink even further. (TNA)