Thailand’s exports in March were down 4.88 per cent year on year (YoY), leading to a 1.6-per-cent contraction in exports in the first quarter of this year compared to the same period last year.

The Commerce Ministry reported on Monday Thailand’s customs-cleared exports fell to US$21.4 billion after a 5.9% rise in February to $21.6 billion.

Slowdown in global trade and economies

Pimchanok Vonkorpon, director-general of the Trade Policy and Strategy Office, said March’s contraction was largely because of a slowdown in global trade and economies.

Shipments of manufacturing products shrank 6 per cent, led by electronics items, computers and its components and hard disk drives, while shipments of automobiles and auto parts, motorcycle and parts and rubber products continued to expand.

Nissan exports at Laem Chabang port (near Pattaya)
Shipments of automobiles and auto parts continued to expand.

Exports of agricultural and agro-industrial products, meanwhile, rebounded from the previous month’s contraction and registered growth of 3.2% from the same period last year, led by fresh, frozen and processed fruits and vegetables (+30.0%), fresh, frozen and processed chicken (+14.2%), rubber (+6.5%) and canned tuna (+6.4%). However, some products declined such as sugar (-23.0%), rice (-7.7%) and cassava products (-9.4%).

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