The Thai economy could shrink by as much as 5.5 percent this year as the Coronavirus (Covid-19) epidemic continues.
According to the Bank of Thailand, the Thai economy is predicted to shrink by the end of this year before making a slight recovery with a 3 percent growth in 2021. GDP growth for 2019 was 2.4 percent.
The effect on tourism caused by the virus is the main reason for the predicted retraction this year. The number of tourists arriving in Thailand is expected to be down by a huge 60 percent this year, causing a massive knock-on effect for local businesses, tour operators, hotels, and many other businesses.
Don Nakornthab, Senior Director of Thailand’s Economic and Policy Department, said:
“The coronavirus outbreak has been impacting Thai tourism and exports to a large extent. The number of tourist arrivals was expected to contract by 60% this year while the economies of our trading partners would slow down or enter into recession if the Covid-19 pandemic persists for a prolonged period.”
“Government stimulus packages, businesses and people’s adaptations to the situation hold the key to the direction of the local economy.”
Prior to the Covid-19 outbreak, the Thai economy was already predicted for slow growth, lagging behind many other countries in the region.
Source: The Nation