Thai Oct consumer confidence at 5-month high over reopening – ET TravelWorld

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Hotel workers wearing protective suits hold up signs as they wait for foreign tourists during the first day of the country's reopening campaign, part of the government's plan to jump start the pandemic-hit tourism sector in Bangkok, Thailand November 1, 2021. REUTERS/Chalinee Thirasupa
Hotel workers wearing protective suits hold up signs as they wait for foreign tourists during the first day of the country’s reopening campaign, part of the government’s plan to jump start the pandemic-hit tourism sector in Bangkok, Thailand November 1, 2021. REUTERS/Chalinee Thirasupa

Thai consumer confidence rose for a second straight month in October, hitting a five-month high, thanks to an easing of coronavirus curbs and a wider reopening of the country’s troubled tourism sector, a survey showed on Thursday.

The Southeast Asian country has reopened to more vaccinated foreign visitors without quarantine requirements from this month after more than a year of tight border controls. The consumer index of the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce rose to 43.9 in October from 41.4 in September, when containment measures were relaxed to help domestic activity. “Consumers had some hope that the economy would recover in future,” university president Thanavath Phonvichai told a briefing.

Fully vaccinated visitors from 46 low-risk countries and regions will be allowed to enter Thailand quarantine-free from November. But the recent announcement has not only raised hopes for the country’s economic recovery, but also mixed reactions.

Sentiment was also lifted by government stimulus measures amid weak consumption, he said, adding the government would need to inject at least THB 500 billion (USD 15 billion) next year to get economic growth of more than 4 per cent. This year, the economy might grow by 1 per cent to 1.5 per cent with an expected contraction of 3 per cent to 4 per cent in the third quarter due to the curbs, Thanavath said. Last year, the economy shrank 6.1 per cent.A separate survey by the Federation of Thai Capital Market Organizations (FETCO) showed its investor confidence index in October rising by 18.2 per cent to a record high of 168.69. The index, which projects confidence in the market over the next three months, moved to the “very bullish” zone, with tourism revival seen as the most supportive factor, the FETCO said in a statement.



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