Consumer confidence, industry sentiment rising high

Buoyed by optimism over Thailand’s reopening to foreign visitors, the Kingdom’s indexes for consumer confidence and business sentiment both rose to their highest levels in five months on expectations the adverse effects of the pandemic have passed.

“We see more people mobility and more hotel bookings for the New Year period, which are good signs for the country’s reopening,” said Supant Mongkolsuthree Chairman of the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI), which publishes the Business Sentiment Index.

Thailand’s economy has been growing at a rate of about 1 percent this year partly because of necessary travel restrictions to prevent the COVID-19 outbreak from becoming an epidemic.

The government has initiated several stimulus packages to relieve the hardship on businesses and the public. The FTI urged the government to introduce more stimuli and further relax restrictions to spur domestic activity. The Federation said it is confident the economic recover will continue.

The Consumer Confidence Index published by the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce (UTCC) echoed that view.

“Consumers have some hope that the economy will recover,” said UTCC President Thanavath Phonvichai.

He said that hope was based on the lifting of restrictions, the Kingdom’s reopening to visitors from overseas, and the government’s plan to spend about $15 billion next year to kick the economy into higher gear and return to a growth rate in the neighborhood of 4 percent.