State eyes 4.2% growth in 2022
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State eyes 4.2% growth in 2022

The government is targeting economic growth of up to 4.2% under its medium-term fiscal policy framework for 2023-26, and plans to maintain a budget deficit to help the fragile economy.

According to deputy government spokeswoman Rachada Dhnadirek, the framework approved by the cabinet on Tuesday aims for 3.2-4.2% growth in 2023, 2.9-3.9% in 2024, and 2.8%-3.8% in 2025 and 2026.

Net state revenue for 2023-2026 is projected at 2.49 trillion baht, 2.56 trillion, 2.64 trillion and 2.72 trillion, respectively. The expenditure budget is estimated at 3.19 trillion baht in 2023, 3.27 trillion in 2024, 3.36 trillion in 2025, and 3.46 trillion in 2026.

Ms Rachada said the government needs to continue running a deficit from 2023-26 to stimulate an economic recovery following the pandemic. The government also needs to rely on borrowing for social and economic rehabilitation, she said.

Ms Rachada cited a Finance Ministry report to the cabinet on the continued risk of Covid-19 in 2022, possibly leading to renewed government measures to cope with new infections and repair the damage inflicted by the virus.

She said the government also needs to prepare for risks caused by global megatrends such as climate change and an ageing society, which may affect the state's revenue collection efforts and its fiscal burden.

However, Ms Rachada said the government has pledged to adhere to fiscal discipline while looking for ways to increase state revenues.

Under the framework for 2023-26, the deficit is projected to be 695 billion baht in 2023, 710 billion in 2024, 723 billion in 2025, and 736 billion in 2026. The framework is subject to periodic revision to ensure it aligns with the economic environment.

The framework for 2022-25 aimed for 3-4% growth in 2022, 2.7-3.7% in 2023 and 2.9-3.9% in 2024.

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