Thailand : Board of Trade predicts economic resurgence, maintains 3.5% GDP growth forecast

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The economy has already bottomed out and should head up steadily in the remaining months, driven mainly by rising private investment, increasing tourism arrivals and incomes, and the “digital economy” policy, which will help promote business, according to the Board of Trade of Thailand and Thai Chamber of Commerce.

The Board of Trade yesterday left its GDP growth prediction at 3.5 per cent for this year after seeing that the economy had already reached its low point. “After hearing comments from every provincial chamber of commerce, businesspeople shared the view that the economy is on a roll, particularly in tourism, retailing and investment,” Isara Vongkusolkit, chairman of the two associations, said yesterday.In April, the Board of Trade’s figures showed retail sales up by 1.5-2 per cent, compared with growth of just 0.5 per cent in the first quarter of the year. Collections of value-added tax were up 10 per cent in the first four months of the year.

Sales of life insurance policies grew 13-14 per cent year on year in the first quarter, while sales of non-life insurance were up 7-8 per cent, reflecting more investment by companies to build factories.

Despite the slowdown in exports, shipments from Bangkok Port expanded by 6.07 per cent and from Laem Chabang Port by 7.5e per cent in the first quarter, showing more trade with many markets, especially the United States and CLMV (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam).

Isara said that with the brighter business outlook, the economy should show strength throughout next year.

Under the government’s digital economy policy, more companies would be promoted to expand in both the domestic and international markets, he said.

Vichai Bencharongkul, chairman of the Board of Trade’s Creative Digital Economy Committee, said that after more investment in telecommunications businesses, more sales in the industry and more services, the information and communications technology sector is expected to grow by 10 per cent a year and could reach Bt1.5 trillion this year.

The ICT sector was worth Bt1.2 trillion in 2013, accounting for 10 per cent of gross domestic product.

The Board of Trade has supported the government’s plan to invest more in expanding Internet broadband access to every household, to adopt technology for distance learning and to promote the growth of e-commerce.

For every 10-per-cent expansion in Internet broadband, GDP will grow by 1.3 per cent, the organisation believes. For every 10-per-cent growth of mobile phones, GDP will grow by 0.7 per cent.

Source : The Nation | May 20, 2015
Thomas D’Innocenzi
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Thomas D’Innocenzi is a highly accomplished, results-focused international consultant with extensive experience in global sourcing and business development worldwide to meet evolving business needs. Tom has proven ability in implementing and managing profitable global marketing and sourcing operations. He has extensive experience in international business development to accommodate rapid growth. Skilled in building top-performing teams, bench-marking performance, and developing organizations to improve efficiency, productivity, and profitability. Experienced transition leader and change agent. Tom founded Nova Advisors with the mission of providing expert Global Business Development consulting services for companies seeking to expand their market share as an independent consultant. Tom has a network of experts and advisors throughout the Asia-Pacific region and North America. His expertise includes business development, global sourcing, manufacturing, commodities, logistics, QA/QC, FDA, regulatory compliance, sustainability, and supply chain optimization. Tom is experienced in the medical device, apparel, consumer goods and technology services verticals helping companies advance their global sourcing capabilities and develop new markets through a local and sustained approach. Located in SE Asia and the United States, Tom expands market reach to drive sales. His global sourcing strategy includes directly negotiating with commodity suppliers, supply chain networks and distributors for optimal terms based on his expertise and first-hand knowledge of the players. Contact Tom to use his consulting service to increase your global market and make global sourcing profitable for you in the Asia Pacific Region and the United States. http://www.NovaAdvisors.com thomas@NovaAdvisors.com USA Direct: +1.904.479.3600 SINGAPORE: +65.6818.6396 THAILAND: +662.207.9269
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