InfoQuest (May 7, 2021) - The Thai National Shippers' Council upgraded the expected growth rate of Thailand's exports this year from 3-4 percent to 6-7 percent.
I. The global economic recovery continues.
Major trading partners have achieved economic growth, and relevant economic data have improved.
The domestic production index rose to the highest value in the past decade, with the national average reaching 55.
II. Exports saw the highest value. The industrial products embrace expanded production, pushing the exports to the highest in the past 28 months.
III. Crude oil prices continue to rise. The economic stimulus measures introduced by various countries and rapid COVID-19 vaccination have boosted global confidence in economic development, thus reviving oil demand.
IV. The Thai baht continues to depreciate.
Meanwhile, Thailand is still facing some economic risks and difficulties:
I. Insufficient containers and high freight rates.
European routes and the east coast routes of the United States lack containers and stacking places; the west coast routes of the United States are hindered by inland traffic congestion, causing some Inland Ports to temporarily refuse reservations, and only the Base Ports can accept reservations.
Freight rates on many routes remain at a relatively high level, and some routes add surcharges.
The congested Lianchawan Port impairs the whole supply chain and further affects Thailand's overall economic development.
II. The COVID-19 pandemic has not receded, weakening people's purchasing power and hindering economic recovery.
III. Shortage of raw materials.
The shortage of chips has adversely affected the automobile industry and the electronic products industry. Some automobile manufacturers began to delay the production and delivery of some models.
Steel prices have risen in the global market. To curb air pollution, China's steel output has dropped by about 50 percent, which gave rise to a shortage of steel supply and an increase in prices.
IV. Labor shortage. The COVID-19 pandemic makes it harder for foreign workers to enter and leave the country, and many industries have to cut their output due to labor shortages.
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