SCB pessimistic on 2020 GDP growth

SCB pessimistic on 2020 GDP growth

People wear face masks at Don Mueang airport on Feb 3, following the outbreak of the Wuhan coronavirus. (Bangkok Post file photo)
People wear face masks at Don Mueang airport on Feb 3, following the outbreak of the Wuhan coronavirus. (Bangkok Post file photo)

Siam Commercial Bank’s Economic Intelligence Center (EIC) has offered the most pessimistic view yet of Thailand’s 2020 economic growth, slashing its forecast from 2.7% to 2.1% after taking into account the coronavirus epidemic and the delayed fiscal budget.

The biggest impact from the outbreak of the novel coronavirus on Thailand’s tourism sector will be seen this month and next, the research unit said.    

The number of foreign travellers is estimated to drop for three straight months in the better-case scenario, four in the base-case scenario and six in the worst-case assumption, resulting in a contraction of 2.5%, 4.6% or 8.1% in 2020, the EIC said.

The Wuhan coronavirus will slow China’s economy this year, threatening the global economic recovery and dealing a blow to supply chains in the period ahead. In the EIC’s base-case scenario, Thailand’s export value is forecast to shrink by 1% this year, down from 0.2% growth predicted earlier.

The EIC’s latest forecast is far below policymakers’ views. The Bank of Thailand and the Fiscal Policy Office predict GDP growth of 2.8% this year. 

Apart from the Sars-like virus outbreak, the delay in the fiscal 2020 budget bill will hurt public investment in the three months to March.

The government is expected to hasten budget disbursement to shore up the economy after the budget bill is implemented. But the months-long delay can’t be completely offset, and state investment growth is now projected at 3.9% in 2020, down from an earlier 5.6% estimate, the EIC said.


Do you like the content of this article?
COMMENT (1)

Weaker baht hits travel

Outbound Thai travel is expected to stay subdued as a result of the weak baht, poor purchasing power and cryptocurrency losses, despite the reopening of Japan and Taiwan.

06:14

'Little Thailand' celebrated in New York

Don Pramudwinai, deputy prime minister and minister of foreign affairs, joined New York City's Thai community on Monday to celebrate the naming of a road in Queens as "Little Thailand Way".

06:06

'Billy' murder suspects plead 'not guilty' ahead of trial

Chaiwat Limlikit-aksorn, the former chief of Kaeng Krachan National Park, and three other defendants on Monday pleaded not guilty in the case brought against them in court in connection with the disappearance and murder of a Karen rights activist back in 2014.

06:00