Thai exports in January see highest growth in 19 months


February 23, 2024

Thailand’s exports in January expanded for the sixth consecutive month, totalling US$22.6 billion (815.7 billion baht) and growing 10% year on year.

Ministry of Commerce permanent secretary Keerati Rushchano said on Friday that the growth in January was the highest in 19 months since June 2022.

However, the country’s imports totalled $25.4 billion (914.9 billion baht) in January, an increase of 2.6% year on year, with a trade deficit of $2.7 billion (99.2 billion baht), according to the official.

He said that Thailand’s exports of farm produce and industrial agriculture products expanded 9.2% last month.

Exports to the country’s major markets saw expansion by an average of 10.5% due to the economic recovery in those countries. For example, exports to the United States grew by 13.7%, to China by 2.1%, the European Union by 4.5%, Japan by 1%, CLMV countries (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam) by 16.6%, and other Asean countries by 18.1%.

Thai exports to other parts of the world also saw higher growth, such as 27.2% to Australia, 64.6% to Russia and CIS states, and 5.1% to Switzerland. However, Thai exports to Africa, Latin America, and the United Kingdom declined.

Keerati attributed the continued growth in Thai exports, particularly to many Asian countries, to their recovery from inflation and higher demand for food and farm products. He said that his ministry was monitoring the geopolitical situation in different parts of the world to see if they would affect Thai exports in the long term.

He pointed out that there were still positive factors that would benefit Thailand’s exports this year, including the economic recovery seen in many of the country’s trading partners. Also, many countries were importing more food and agricultural products from Thailand to maintain their food security.

He said that conflicts in the Middle East have had no direct impact on Thailand’s exports although they resulted in higher shipping freight rates.

Source: The Nation