Thailand needs US$30 billion more to support the economy
Thailand needs an additional 1 trillion baht (US$29.9 billion) to support the economy, the country’s central bank chief said as the nation battles its most severe COVID-19 outbreak to date.
The projected 1 trillion baht would be reasonable given the state of the economy, said Bank of Thailand Governor Sethaput Suthiwartnarueput at a news conference.
Compared to the 1997 Asian financial crisis, the problems now are worse, he said, adding that “with such severe symptoms, the medicine must be strong and right to the point,” he said, according to Reuters.
The government has a strong fiscal position and is able to borrow more to help the economy, he added.
The pandemic has caused income losses, estimated at 2.6 trillion baht (US$78.13 billion) — 1.8 trillion baht (US$54 billion) in 2020-2021 and 800 billion baht (US$24 billion) in 2022, the central bank chief noted.
He forecasts jobless numbers to be 3.4 million at end-2021, up from 3 million in 2Q2021.
He added that the Bank of Thailand will ensure that the baht will not impede the economy, as the currency had already depreciated by 10% in 2021, making it Asia’s worst performing currency.