Exports will grow by only 1.3% overall this year, the lowest in four years, with the total value now estimated at US$231.73 billion, Ath Pisalvanich, director of the International Trade Studies Centre at the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce (UTCC), said on Tuesday.
Mr Ath said the projection was based on the low rate of export expansion in the first eight months of the year.
He projected export growth for the fourth quarter of the year at 5.12%, with a total value of $60.10 billion on the back of economic recovery in the country’s trade partners, including the US, European Union and Asean.
But this would not enable the Ministry of Commerce to achieve its export growth target of 4% as planned, he said.
The academic said if the export target is to be achieved, exports will have to be boosted to about $22 billion monthly, which is very difficult.
Mr Ath expected 2014 exports to grow in the range of 5.48% to 7.9%, with a total value of $244.98-$250.56 billion, boosted by global economic recovery, especially in the US.
Risk factors that could affect export expansion next year included the uncertainty in the economies of Thailand’s trade partners, such as the US, countries in Europe and Japan, the fluctuation in forex rates and the internal political conflict that could turn violent, he said.
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