Thailand's exports fall 11.3 per cent in February
Mar 18, 2009, 8:30 GMT
Bangkok - Thailand's exports in February fell 11.3 per cent year-on-year while imports tumbled 40.3 per cent, the Ministry of Commerce disclosed Wednesday.
Exports in February, 2009, amounted to 11.7 billion dollars, compared with 13.2 billion in the same month last year. Thailand's imports last month amounted to 8.2 billion dollars, down 40.3 per cent on the 13.7 billion import bill in February, 2008.
The drastic decline in imports points to a rapid falloff in imported parts and components for Thailand's main export industries such as electronics, electrical appliances and automobiles.
In February exports of electrics fell 30.1 per cent, electrical appliances 33.3 per cent and automobiles by 33.2 per cent, according to the ministry's latest figures.
The three sectors account for more than 60 per cent of Thailand's total exports.
The only two Thai export sectors that performed well in February were rice, up 8.3 per cent, and jewelry, up 402.7 per cent, because of the jump in international gold prices.
Thailand's exports in January fell 26.5 per cent year-on-year. Altogether the kingdom exported 22.2 billion dollars worth of goods in the first two months on 2009, down 19.2 per cent, while imports amounted to 17.3 billion, leaving it with a trade surplus.
The poor performance of Thailand's exports, which accounts for approximately 65 per cent of gross domestic product, is expected to lead to a 1 to 2 per cent contraction of the economy in 2009.
Thai Prime Minster Abhisit Vejjajiva on Tuesday announced plans to launch a 1.4 trillion baht (39 billion dollars) stimulus package over the next three years to bolster domestic spending, create jobs and spur economic growth.