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Government urged to encourage baht’s weakening

Government urged to encourage baht’s weakening

(TNA) – According to chairman of the Bank of Thailand’s board of governors Chatumongkol Sonakul, the Thai government should adopt a policy to encourage weakening of the baht in order to enhance revenues in the export, tourism and agricultural sectors.
Delivering a keynote speech on the ‘Overall picture of the macro-economy of Thailand at present’, former deputy Prime Minister Olarn Chaiprawat said the baht should weaken to around 36 to the US dollar in the present economic circumstance.
 In the first quarter, the Bank of Thailand managed to make the baht depreciate to 35.5 to the dollar; however, the currency has since strengthened in the second quarter.
to 34 to the dollar. Olarn stated that, in addition, in order to stimulate the economy, the government should accelerate lending to small and medium-sized enterprises in the tourism, real estate and consumer sectors.
 He noted that, in the first half of this year, SME loans extended by commercial banks had contracted by up to 220 billion baht, adding that the government should speed up budget disbursement and spending. Taxes should be reduced to boost economic recovery. These measures, if successfully implemented, would boost the recovery of the Thai economy, bringing results closer to those of the third quarter of 2008.
Olarn also predicted that Thailand’s Q4 gross domestic product would enjoy positive growth after having contracted 4.3% in the same quarter last year due to the economic crisis. (TNA)