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Thailand’s inflation reaches 3%

The Thai baht will continue to rise as more foreign capital flows in to the domestic financial market, but the stronger currency is a double-edged sword because it could slow what has been a strong export business.

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Rise in the inflation rate

Thailand’s inflation last month rose 108.92 points, or 3% year-on-year, commerce permanent secretary Yanyong Phuangrach said on Tuesday.

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Mr Yanyong said December inflation rose 0.16 per cent from November . The annual average inflation for 2010 stood at 3.3 per cent.The increase was in line with the ministry’s forecast at 3.0 to 3.5 per cent, he said. Inflation should be between 3.2 and 3.7 per cent in 2011, he said.

The Commerce Ministry forecast December inflation to stand at 3.2-3.4 per cent on average.

Due to sharp increases in food and energy prices, annual inflation accelerated to 3% in December from 2.8% in the previous month. The commerce ministry forecasts inflation to stay between 3% and 3.5% this year. Month-on-month, consumer prices climbed 0.16%.

The Bank of Thailand had resumed monetary policy tightening in December in anticipation of a rise in inflationary pressures. The policy interest rate was raised by 25 basis points to 2% per annum. The central bank expects inflationary pressures to rise with increasing demand on the back of economic expansion.

The Thai baht will continue to rise as more foreign capital flows in to the domestic financial market, but stronger currency could slow what has been a strong export business.

Economics

Thai fruit exports to FTA markets up 107 percent

China, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Australia and Chile are top importers of Thai fruits, especially fresh durian, mangosteen, longan and mango. Thai exporters are able to benefit from FTA privileges.

National News Bureau of Thailand

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BANGKOK (NNT) – Thailand’s fruit exports continue to increase, despite the sluggish global economy caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, with key trade partners being countries that have free trade agreements (FTAs) with the kingdom.

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Economics

The Future of Asia: greener but with a public and private debt hangover

The COVID-19 pandemic has been a perfect storm, destroying jobs, worsening poverty and inequality, and creating a public and private debt problem—especially for countries and firms already in fragile financial health beforehand

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Economics

50:50 campaign may not get immediate extension

National News Bureau of Thailand

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BANGKOK (NNT) – The government’s 50:50 co-pay campaign expiring on 31st March may not be getting an immediate campaign extension. The Minister of Finance says campaign evaluation is needed to improve future campaigns.

The Minister of Finance Arkhom Termpittayapaisith today announced the government may not be able to reach a conclusion on the extension of the 50:50 co-pay campaign in time for the current 31st March campaign end date, as evaluations are needed to better improve the campaign.

Originally introduced last year, the 50:50 campaign is a financial aid campaign for people impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, in which the government subsidizes up to half the price of purchases at participating stores, with a daily cap on the subsidy amount of 150 baht, and a 3,500 baht per person subsidy limit over the entire campaign.

The campaign has already been extended once, with the current end date set for 31st March.

The Finance Minister said that payout campaigns for the general public are still valid in this period, allowing time for the 50:50 campaign to be assessed, and to address reports of fraud at some participating stores.

The Fiscal Police Office Director General and the Ministry of Finance Spokesperson Kulaya Tantitemit, said today that a bigger quota could be offered in Phase 3 of the 50:50 campaign beyond the 15 million people enrolled in the first two phases, while existing participants will need to confirm their identity if they want to participate in Phase 3, without the need to fill out the registration form.

Mrs Kulaya said the campaign will still be funded by emergency loan credit allocated for pandemic compensation, which still has about 200 billion baht available as of today.

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