Exports surge for highest increase in 11 years

Exports, the main engine of the Thai economy, went into overdrive in June, accelerating by 43.8 percent for the highest monthly increase in 11 years and providing a bright light during pandemic-induced challenging times.

Domestic car sales also continued to cruise, increasing by 15 percent year on year in June, following a 38 percent gain in May. Local car sales are an indicator of domestic consumption, which balances exports for a healthy economy. Automobile and parts were also one of the strongest performers among exports, rising by 78 percent.

Thailand’s Ministry of Commerce added more good news to the mix with statistics that showed new business registrations shot up by 23 percent during the first half of 2021. The number of business closures was relatively small.

The Ministry reported that June was the fourth consecutive month that exports have been trending upward. The $23.7 billion worth of goods shipped that month represented the highest growth rate since June 2010. Imports also increased, signaling strengthening demand and economic activity, but the Kingdom still maintained a trade surplus of $945 million.

Commerce Minister Jurin Laksanawisit said that the export expansion was the result of continuous implementation of export promotion plans since the beginning of the year, the growing global economic recovery, and the falling value of the baht, the Thai currency. A weaker baht makes Thai products more competitively priced overseas.

The baht had been one of the stronger currencies in Asia in recent years, while the fall of the baht has been the result of market forces. The government and the central bank have consistently resisted calls to intervene.

The Ministry added that agricultural and agro-industrial product exports rose for seven consecutive months with a growth rate of 36 percent year-on-year in June to $3.98 billion.

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