The Bank of Thailand (BOT) said on Monday (31 July) that Thailand’s economic recovery remained on track in June as the tourism sector expanded on higher foreign tourist arrivals while exports declined.
BOT Assistant Governor Chayawadee Chai-Anant said economic activity was seen gradually improving, driven by tourism, as exports were not expected to improve until late in the year. She also said, “In the period ahead, tourism should continue to recover and remain a key driver force, while exports are likely to be stable.”
The BOT has forecast economic growth of 3.6% this year and 3.8% next year, driven by tourism. Last year’s growth was 2.6%. It has predicted 29 million tourist arrivals this year and 35.5 million in 2024. That compared with nearly 40 million visitors in pre-pandemic 2019.
Chayawadee said the central bank was monitoring risks from a global economic slowdown and a delay in the formation of a new government after the May national elections.
She added, “The government formation if delayed for a long time, would dent confidence.”
Thailand recorded a current account surplus of US$1.4 billion, after a deficit of $2.8 billion in May. The BOT said the economy improved slightly in the second quarter of 2023 from the previous period. Official second-quarter GDP data is due to be released on August 21. The economy expanded 2.7% on-year in the first quarter.