Thailand’s central bank cuts its GDP projection for 2021 amid COVID

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Thailand’s central bank on Wednesday cut the country’s 2021 GDP forecast to 1.8%, the Bank of Thailand (BOT) said in a statement.

The forecast for this year has been reduced from the previous 3% in March to 1.8%, as the tourism industry and domestic demand underperform during the pandemic, according to the BOT’s Monetary Policy Committee.

Heavily dependent on tourism, Thailand has suffered a huge loss in tourism revenue as the number of international visitors fell from some 40 million in 2019 to 6.7 million in 2020, Xinhua reported.

The committee highlighted the potential for further downside risk due to the ongoing epidemic and recommended accelerating the implementation of financial measures, in particular the corporate loan facility and debt restructuring.

The committee voted to keep the already low key rate at 0.50% for now and to be prepared to use the limited political space at a more appropriate time.

In order to cope with its worst Covid-19 outbreak, the Southeast Asian country has stepped up its vaccination campaign to help open up the economy and revitalize the tourism industry.

Daily Covid-19 deaths in Thailand reached an all-time high with 51 deaths reported on Wednesday. The total number of infections in the country now stands at 228,539, with 1,744 deaths.


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