The World Bank’s Thailand Economic Monitor for June 2023 reveals an accelerated economic recovery in Thailand. The forecast for Thai GDP growth in 2023 has been revised upward to 3.9 percent, attributed to stronger-than-expected external demand.
Government spokesman Anucha Burapachaisri conveyed that Prime Minister Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha expressed gratitude to all parties involved for their efforts in facilitating the economic recovery. The prime minister expressed confidence in the government’s economic stimulus policies, which have been continuously assessed to strengthen the Thai economy. The World Bank’s revised projections reflect the success of these policies.
According to the World Bank report, Thailand’s economic growth rebounded by 4.5 percent in the first quarter of 2023, driven by domestic demand and tourism. It further states that the current account balance is expected to return to positive territory in 2023, standing at 2.5 percent of GDP, thanks to trade in goods and services. The labor market conditions have also improved, with the unemployment rate declining to 1.1 percent from 1.5 percent in the same quarter of the previous year, particularly due to recovery in tourism, trade, and hospitality sectors.
Anucha highlighted that, according to the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, over 12.4 million foreign tourists have visited Thailand since the beginning of the year, contributing approximately 500 billion baht to the country’s income.
The World Bank’s report projects further expansion of the Thai economy, with growth rates of 3.6 percent and 3.4 percent anticipated for 2024 and 2025, respectively. However, it also points out potential risks, such as weaker-than-expected global economic growth and challenges posed by climate change. The report acknowledges Thailand’s vulnerability to droughts and floods but acknowledges progress in developing better coping mechanisms for these natural disasters.