Thai GDP Growth Slows to 5.3% YoY in Q1 2013

In the first quarter of 2013, the Thai economy expanded by 5.3 percent, compared to a 19.1 percent rise in the previous quarter. The sluggish expansion was a result of slowdown in both domestic demand and external sector.

On the expenditure side, household consumption rose by 4.2 percent, slowing down from a rise of 12.4 percent in the previous quarter. The growth was driven by consumption on durable goods (especially motor vehicles), stimulated by the nationwide minimum wage adjustment, low unemployment and inflation rates and government’s economic-stimulus measures.

Government consumption grew by 2.2 percent, compared to a 12.5 percent rise in the previous quarter, mainly due to a fall in compensation of employees. 

Total investment grew by 6.0 percent, decelerating from a 22.9 percent rise in the previous quarter. This was due to a slowdown in both private and public investment. Private investment increased by 3.1 percent, reflecting expansion in construction by 8.9 percent and machinery and equipment by 1.5 percent. Public investment increased by 18.8 percent. Meanwhile, investment in machinery and equipment grew by 30.3 percent, reflecting growth in government investment.

Exports and imports of goods and services decelerated to 8.4 percent and 8.2 percent, compared to a rise of 19.6 percent and 15.0 percent in the previous quarter, respectively. 
On the production side, non-agricultural production grew by 5.8 percent. The expansion was driven by the services sector, mainly hotels and restaurants (14.8 percent) in line with an increase in number of foreign tourists. Transports and communication increased by 8.7 percent and financial intermediation by 10.1 percent. The manufacturing sector grew by 4.8 percent, slowing down from a 37.0 percent rise in the previous quarter due to low-base production of 2012. Growth in manufacturing was led by production in motor vehicles and electrical appliances.
All other sectors also increased, including mining and quarrying (10.5 percent), electricity, gas and water supply (3.0 percent), construction (10.5 percent) and wholesale and retail trade (5.0 percent). However, some subsectors declined, namely public administration and defense (-0.6 percent), education (-3.4 percent), and health services (-0.1 percent).

The agricultural sector slowed down by 0.5 percent, due to a slowdown in rise production. Moreover, livestock production slowed down by 1.2 percent. Fishery continued to fall by 6.7 percent due to a decrease in shrimp production. 

After seasonally adjustment, the GDP declined by 2.2 percent on the quarter-on-quarter basis, compared to an expansion of 2.8 percent in the previous quarter.

Thai GDP Growth Slows to 5.3% YoY in Q1 2013

NESDB | Joana Taborda |
5/20/2013 10:32:03 AM