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Thai central bank keep policy interest rate unchanged at 1.25%

BANGKOK, Jan 13 (TNA) The Bank of Thailand (BoT) maintained the policy interest rate at 1.25 per cent annually to favour economic recovery. The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting on Wednesday op…

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The Bank of Thailand (BoT) maintained the policy interest rate at 1.25 per cent annually to favour economic recovery. The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting on Wednesday opted to keep the policy interest rate unchanged, BoT assistant governor Paiboon Kittisrikangwan said in a statement.

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“The global economy continues to improve. However, risks to economic recovery in the period ahead remain, especially for the major industrialised economies,” the BoT statement said.

“The Asian economies are likely to recover sooner, giving rise to policy differentials which may lead to more volatile capital flows going forward. Asian currencies therefore are volatile,” it said.

“The MPC will not allow the interest rate to remain low for too long to avert a liquidity problem, leading to the bubble economy,” Mr Paiboon said.

“The latest economic data pointed toward a continued recovery of the Thai economy. Main supporting factors include improvements in private consumption, income from tourism, exports and agricultural sectors. Nevertheless private investment remains subdued,” said the statement.

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Thai central bank keep policy interest rate unchanged at 1.25%

The current baht rate is not an obstacle to economic recovery, so the BoT does not have to launch any special measures.

External stability in Thailand was upheld by high international reserves, while trade and current account were close to balance. Regarding internal stability, inflation rose from last year in line with higher oil prices, despite a downward trend during the second half of the year. Unemployment rate remained low in Thailand in 2008 but employment started to deteriorate in the forth quarter, particularly in the production sector affected by economic slowdown.

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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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The Sydney Opera resumed live performances and the city of Melbourne recently hosted the Australian Open tennis tournament with fans (mostly) in attendance.

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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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Economics

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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