Thailand’s retail business this year will tend to grow continuously at 15-20 per cent in value, according to the Kasikorn Research Centre (KRC).
The centre predicted that retail competition will be fierce, with investments by more small retailers of both Thai and foreign nationality, and there will be about 11,000 branches in total of all types of retail business in the country.
It said factors supporting retail business are the government’s policy of increasing income, investment in water management and infrastructure, and tourism expansion.
However, KRC warned entrepreneurs of risk factors which included the higher cost of living as a result of the minimum wage hike and of higher electricity and other energy costs.
The retail business atmosphere in the region will become more fierce once the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) takes effect in 2015. Thai entrepreneurs are advised to identify their strengths and weaknesses in order to further develop the qualities and selling points of their products and/or services. (MCOT online news)
Whilst its vibrant traditional markets remain a draw for tourists, Thailand’s large and growing modern retail sector, which accounts for approximately 40% of all sales, has attracted a number of domestic and international investors.
Consumer demand has been particularly resilient even in the face of the most extreme events, with household expenditure largely unaffected despite some shifts in preferences.
The Thai Retailers’ Association (TRA) estimates the retail sector expanded by 7% yearon-year (y-o-y) during 2011, reaching approximately BT1.4trn ($44.66bn), or around 16% of GDP. This makes Thailand the second-largest retail market in Southeast Asia, just trailing Indonesia. Consumer spending tends to increase in the run-up to elections, and the months leading up to July 2011 proved no exception. As unprecedented floods hit the capital in the final quarter of 2011, consumer spending on non-essentials slumped significantly, but confidence quickly returned in December, a sign of buoyant demand supported by a series of government policies to come in 2012.
write analysts from the Oxford Business Group in their Thailand Report 2012