Thai growth forecasts may need to be revised down – central bank chief

BANGKOK (Reuters) – Thailand’s economy continues to recover, helped by tourism and consumption, though the growth forecast may need to be revised down with exports weak this year, the central bank chief said on Wednesday.

“Previously (the forecast) was 3.6%, due to a slowdown, this number will probably need to be adjusted down to the mid-3% range this year,” Bank of Thailand Governor Sethaput Suthiwartnarueput told a central bank seminar.

In May, the central bank maintained its forecasts for economic growth at 3.6% this year and 3.8% next year. The economy expanded 2.6% in 2022.

“Exports have been soft due to global issues,” he said but private consumption and tourism would support continued recovery and that the country expects 29 million foreign arrivals this year.

Sethaput said inflation was falling faster than expected and interest rate decisions would focus on the economic outlook not short term data.

(Reporting by Orathai Sriring, Kitiphong Thaichareon and Satawasin Staporncharnchai, writing by Chayut Setboonsarng; Editing by Martin Petty)