Somchai: BoT can oversee baht value
- Published: 18 Oct 2013 at 12.00
- Online news:
The Bank of Thailand is capable of preventing the baht from too much fluctuation, Somchai Sajjapongse, director general of the Fiscal Policy Office, said on Friday.
The baht’s appreciation for two days in a row, to stand at 31.03 baht to the US dollar on Friday morning, was boosted by the political settlement in the US on the federal budget and debt ceiling, he said.
Even though the US problems had not yet been really resolved, as the debt ceiling was extended only to February 2014, this had made global economies feel more comfortable, he added.
Mr Somchai said his office, the Office of the National Economic and Social Development Board and the central bank had assessed the situation and prepared necessary measures to deal with any possible negative consequences caused by capital inflow or outflow.
The conflict settlement in the US might trigger foreign investment inflow to Thailand and strengthen the value of the baht currency, but that was not a problem of concern as the central bank had already prepared any needed measures, he said.
Thailand also has US$170 billion in foreign reserves, sufficient to deal with any possible situation. At this stage the baht is not too strong and there is no need for intervention by the central bank, he said.
Asked about speculation the US Federal Reserve would scale down its quantitative easing measure in the first quarter of next year, Mr Somchai said it would be a good development.
It would show that the US economy is recovering and monetary measures to stimulate economic growth were no longer needed. When the US economy recovers, it would boost Thailand’s exports even as it also triggers a foreign investment outflow, affecting the baht's value, he said.