In a recent article on the popular TheThaiger.com website, it was announced that the Thai Finance Ministry has approved a economic stimulus package aimed at boosting both year end tourist numbers and Thailands overall Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
People have long suspected that the strong Thai Baht has made Thai holidays and products more expensive, which has almost certainly had an adverse effect on both the Thai export and tourism sectors, and partly explains why the World Bank has slashed their GDP growth forecast for Thailand from 3.5% down to 2.7% for 2019. The Thai Baht has been one of the best performing Asian currencies relative to the US Dollar over the past 5 Years, and even with some intervention from the Bank of Thailand, they’ve been unable to curb the rapid appreciation of the Thai Baht as massive cash inflows from international investors who are attracted to Thailand’s strong economic fundamentals continue to flow into the country.
Other reasons for the fall in Thailands GDP growth projections can be attributed to the recent fallout between China and the US over trade tensions, which are now hopefully behind us thanks to President Donald Trumps recent announcement that phase 1 of the trade negotiations has been successfully concluded. Irrespective of the causes, the recent GDP growth forecast for Thailand by the World Bank is now the lowest amongst all of the ASEAN developing countries, which explains why Thailands Government is taking pro-active steps to combat this decline in GDP growth by virtue of this economic stimulus package, which should be commended and applauded.
The two-pronged stated goal of this economic stimulus package is to ensure that Thailand exceeds the 3% GDP growth mark, and the Tourist Authority of Thailands earlier stated goal of more than 40 Million tourist arrivals for 2019, which is presently hovering at around 26.5 Million tourist arrivals as at the end of October 2019.
The stimulus package will take the form of several concerts and sporting events such as the Super GT, which is Thailands version of the “Tour de France” together with several open air live concerts by famous Thai musicians and bands such as EDC and Tomorrow Land, which will all take place in the latter part of this Year. In a recent interview, a Thai Government spokesperson was quoted as saying that the expected 13.5 Million tourist arrivals in the final 3 Months has the potential to add around 750 Billion Thai Baht into the local Thai economy.