Thai October export growth highest in more than a year but misses forecast | Inquirer Business

Thai October export growth highest in more than a year but misses forecast

/ 02:58 PM November 27, 2023

Cargo ships near the port in Bangkok

Cargo ships are pictured near the port in Bangkok, Thailand, March 25, 2016. REUTERS/Athit Perawongmetha/File photo

BANGKOK  -Thailand’s exports in October rose at the fastest annual pace in more than a year but less than expected, and the commerce ministry said on Monday full-year exports would still show a small contraction.

Customs-based exports, a key driver of Thailand’s economy, climbed 8 percent in October from a year earlier, the fastest since June 2022, compared with a forecast rise of 9.3 percent on-year in a Reuters poll.


“The growth was supported by the gradual recovery of demand during the year-end festive season,” the ministry said in a statement, adding China’s economic stimulus measures were also supportive.


The export gains were helped by higher shipments of agricultural products and industrial goods, the ministry said.

The ministry anticipated that the export momentum to continue into next year, Keerati Rushchano, the ministry’s permanent secretary, told a briefing.

“We expect exports in the remaining two months of this year and next year to remain in a better direction … as the global economy is improving,” he said.

Exports, however, are expected to contract 1 percent this year before rising 2 percent next year, Keerati said. Exports declined 2.7 percent year-on-year in the first 10 months of 2023.

READ: Thai Q3 GDP growth misses forecast amid exports slowdown

Chaichan Chareonsuk, chairman of the Thai National Shippers’ Council, said he forecast exports would rise 7 percent on-year in the final quarter of 2023 but fall 1 percent for the full year.


In October, exports of agricultural products rose 12.3 percent year-on-year, while industrial goods shipments rose 5.4 percent. Rice export volumes rose 5.6 percent year-on-year, with export value up 38 percent.

Exports to the United States increased 13.8 percent year-on-year in October while shipments to Southeast Asian countries climbed 4.5 percent. Exports to Japan fell 1.1 percent on-year and shipments to China rose 3.4 percent.

In October, Thailand posted a trade deficit of $0.83 billion, compared with a forecast surplus of $0.53 billion, while imports rose 10.2 percent from a year earlier.

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In the January-October period, imports dropped 4.6 percent year-on-year and the trade deficit stood at $6.67 billion.

TAGS: Agriculture, export growth, forecast, Thailand

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