Foreigners upbeat on outlook

Foreigners upbeat on outlook

Foreign business confidence has recovered, as foreign investors are feeling upbeat about the country's prospects boosted by the government's announcement to reopen the country to inoculated foreign tourists early next month and an increase in vaccine coverage.

The foreign business confidence index (FBCI), which gauges foreign business sentiment in Thailand, stood at 41.7 in the third quarter on a scale of 100 points, up from 27.7 in the second quarter.

The index stood at 33.2 in the first quarter of 2021 and 29.8 in the fourth quarter of 2020 when the index was released for the first time.

The index, conducted by the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce (UTCC) during August-October, sampled 66 presidents, vice-presidents and secretaries-general of the Foreign Chamber of Commerce in Thailand whose members are from 29 countries.

It questions them mainly on two areas: Thailand's economic prospects and their own business confidence.

There are 41 foreign chambers of commerce in Thailand, covering 7,810 companies.

Mr Thanavath said foreign business confidence in the country's overall economy and their business outlook remains low, standing at 44.9 points and 38.4 points, respectively.

Lower than 50 points means less foreign business confidence.

"Foreign business confidence in Thailand improved in the third quarter, mainly driven by the relaxation of lockdown measures and after the government's announcement to reopen the country early next month that will help boost tourism and domestic consumption," he said.

"They also feel positive that Thailand's economy will gradually recover in the fourth quarter of this year and see better growth next year."

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