Factory output unexpectedly drops in May

Factory output unexpectedly drops in May

Map Ta Phut industrial estate, Rayong province. (Photo: Arnun Chonmahatrakool)
Map Ta Phut industrial estate, Rayong province. (Photo: Arnun Chonmahatrakool)

Thailand's factory output unexpectedly dropped in May due mainly to supply shortages for manufacturing cars and some electronics products due to lockdowns in China's major port cities, the Ministry of Industry reported on Wednesday.

Output is likely to be steady in June and recover next month as China's restrictions ease, while increased domestic activity and tourism will also provide support, ministry official Siripen Kiatfuengfoo told a news conference.

In May, the manufacturing production index (MPI) contracted 2.11% from a year earlier, weighed down by lower production of cars, hard disk drives, and plastic pellets, the ministry said.

That compared with a forecast 1.50% rise in output in a Reuters poll and a yearly drop of 0.03% in April, revised from a 0.56% rise.

In May, car production fell 9.11% from a year earlier, while hard disk drives slumped 29.7%, and plastic pellets dropped 15.6%, the ministry said.

However, annual production in oil refining and some electronics parts increased in May, it said.

Industrial goods account for about 80% of total exports, which increased 10.5% in May from a year earlier.

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