Thai Q3 GDP growth misses forecast amid exports slowdown

BANGKOK(Reuters) – Thailand’s economy expanded at a slower-than-expected pace in the third quarter, weighed down by weak exports and agriculture but supported by consumption and the continued recovery in tourism, the state planning agency said on Monday.

Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy has faced sluggish global demand while investor confidence in Thailand dropped despite the end of a political deadlock following an election in May.

The new government, which took office in August, has planned various stimulus measures.

Gross domestic product (GDP) expanded 1.5% in the July-September quarter from a year earlier, the National Economic and Social Development Council (NESDC) said on Monday, down from the 2.4% growth predicted by economists in a Reuters poll.

GDP had risen 1.8% year-on-year in the second quarter.

On a quarterly basis, GDP rose a seasonally adjusted 0.8% in the September quarter, versus a forecast rise of 1.2%, and against 0.2% seasonally adjusted growth in the previous quarter.

The planning agency expected the economy to grow 2.5% this year, the lower end of a previous forecast range of 2.5% to 3.0%. It predicted GDP growth of between 2.7% and 3.7% in 2024.

The economy expanded 2.6% last year.

The agency predicted a 2% contraction in exports for this year, verses a 1.8% fall seen earlier. It saw shipments rising 3.8% in 2024, however.

(Reporting by Orathai Sriring, Kitiphong Thaichareon and Satawasin Staporncharnchai; Editing by Sam Holmes, Martin Petty)