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BANGKOK, May 16 (TNA) – Thailand’s economy has signaled a recovery as witnessed by improved exports of various product items, a surge in the Stock Exchange of Thailand’s index to 500 from 400 points, and an easing in unemployment figures, according to the Fiscal Policy Office.
However, FPO’s Director-General Somchai Sujjapongse said there are certain factors that need to be monitored given that the government’s revenue is expected to fall short by 280 billion baht less than forecast.
Another positive sign for the economy is an increase in value-added tax (VAT) collection nationwide to 35 billion baht in April from 30 billion baht the month before.
He said the agency will continue to monitor VAT collection in May and June with the expectation that revenues would to improve on the back of increasing domestic consumption. Regarding a revelation by the Thai Chamber of Commerce that consumer confidence index in April had dropped in all categories for the third consecutive month, he said the data was based to a great extent on pessimistic predictions and had the current VAT collection data been available, results of the survey might have been different.
However, the FPO is projecting gross domestic product (GDP) will shrink 6 per cent in the first quarter of this year, 4 per cent in the second quarter, and 3 per cent in the third quarter before turning to growth of 1 per cent in the fourth quarter.
GDP for the whole year is forecast to contract on average between 3 and 4 per cent, he said. (TNA)