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Thai consumer confidence hits 10-year low on flood crisis

Thailand’s consumer confidence index regarding the overall economy in October slumped to 62.8 from 72.2 in September, hitting its lowest level since Nov 2001 due to the ongoing flood crisis as well as the European debt crisis, according to a survey by University of Thai Chamber of Commerce UTCC Economic and Business Forecasting Center.

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Empty Seven Eleven Store in Bangkok

Thailand’s consumer confidence index regarding the overall economy in October slumped to 62.8 from 72.2 in September, hitting its lowest level since Nov 2001 due to the ongoing flood crisis as well as the European debt crisis, according to a survey by University of Thai Chamber of Commerce UTCC Economic and Business Forecasting Center.

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Thailand’s consumer confidence indices on job opportunities and future income in October dropped to 63.7 and 90.9 from 73.0 and 100.3 in September respectively.  The indices in all categories lower than usual indicated that Thai consumers remained greatly uncertain about the overall economic situation, and job opportunities, as well as future income after the country’s worst flooding in decades.

In addition, the centre forecast that consumption is likely to gradually slow down in the fourth quarter through mid-first quarter in 2012 due to concerns over flood-induced economic impacts, high cost of living and volatile global economy.

via Flood drags down October consumer confidence to 10-year low: UTCC.

A recent survey conducted by the National Institute of Development Administration (NIDA) released on Friday found that more than half of those polled fear that the Thai economy will deteriorate in the aftermath of the country’s worst flooding.

Empty Seven Eleven Store in Bangkok

Empty Seven Eleven Store in Bangkok

The NIDA survey on Thailand’s direction and post-flood assistance was conducted last week, Nov 3-5, with 1,288 respondents nationwide aged over 15.

Slightly more than half — 51.63 per cent — said they believe the economy will decline, while 41 per cent think that political stability will remain intact with about one quarter — 26 per cent — believe otherwise.

The most pressing issue after the flood recedes, the respondents said, will be inflation – especially the rising prices of consumer products — followed by unemployment, a shortage of goods, and a lack of funds to make a living.

Among the priorities the government should implement after the flood eases, the respondents said, are rehabilitation of infrastructure and restoration of the environment as the top priority, followed by compensation for flood victims, new job placements for the unemployed, and spirit-boosting measures for the flood-stricken residents.

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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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Customs Department Considers Measures to Help SMEs

National News Bureau of Thailand

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BANGKOK (NNT) – The Customs Department is seeking ways to reduce the impact of the exemption on import tax and value-added tax (VAT) for imported goods worth up to 1,500 baht, as such measures are hurting small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

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