Exports fall again in December

Exports fall again in December

Full-year shipments expand 5.5% to a record $287 billion despite fourth-quarter decline

A container ship is berthed at Laem Chabang port in Chon Buri. (Bangkok Post File Photo)
A container ship is berthed at Laem Chabang port in Chon Buri. (Bangkok Post File Photo)

The dollar value of the country’s exports contracted for a third successive month in December, by a bigger than expected 14.6% from a year earlier as global growth slowed, Ministry of Commerce data showed on Tuesday.

The reading compares with a forecast decline of 11.5% year-on-year in a Reuters poll, and came after a 6.% decline in November.

For the whole of 2022, export value hit a record high of $287 billion, representing growth of 5.5%, the ministry said in a statement.

Among major markets in December, exports to the United States dropped 3.9% from a year earlier while those to Southeast Asia fell 19.0%. Exports to China contracted 20.8% from a year earlier, the ministry said.

In December, the value of imports fell 12% from the same period in 2021, compared with a forecast 8% drop. Many imports will be used for producing goods to be shipped out again.

The country recorded a trade deficit of $1.03 billion in December, versus a forecast deficit of $1.06 billion.

For the whole year, imports rose 13.6%, with a trade deficit of $16.1 billion.

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