Industry confidence down again

The Thai Industries Sentiment Index (TISI) was down from 93.5 in March to 92.9 in April, Payungsak Chartsuthipol, chairman of the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI), said on Friday.

  • Published: 17/05/2013 at 01:46 PM
  • Newspaper section: breakingnews

Industry confidence was down for the fourth straight month, and the fact the index remains below the 100 level shows low confidence overall in the industry sector, the FTI chief said.

Mr Payungsak attributed the drop in industry confidence to manufacturers’ concerns about the baht's strength  when compared to other currencies in the region, which affected the export sector, and global economic fluctuations, all causing them problems when taking orders.

In addition, manufacturers had begun to import cheaper raw materials, turning away from higher priced domestic supplies. This affected the supply chain of the country’s upstream industry. At the same time there were no clear assistance measures from the state, he said.

Industry confidence for the next three months was also down, to 99.1 from 99.3 reported in March, on the back of declining overall orders, sales outlook, output and business performance.

The manufacturers were most concerned about the foreign exchange rate, followed by the global economic situation, oil prices, internal political conflict and loan rates.

They wanted the government to step in to stabilise the value of the Thai currency to stop it from strengthening more than those of other countries in the region, particularly Thailand’s competitors.

Manufacturers also wanted the state to provide training courses for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) on the use of financial tools to prevent risk from the exchange rate, continue to boost domestic consumption, and find financial sources to provide low interest loans to ensure SMEs have sufficient liquidity, Mr Payungsak said.

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