What Will Happen to Thai Economy If Feb 2 2014 Election Is Postponed? By: Rural Economist
The strengthen and momentum of the Thai economy has weakened considerably since the start of the protest in early November 2013. The Ministry of Finance has conceded Thai economic growth will deteriorate to less than 3% GDP in 2013. I believe the Thai economy will "at best attain" a 2.8% GDP growth in 2013.
Furthermore, most domestic and international forecasting agencies are now slashing Thai economic growth to a mere 4% (the range is between 3% to 5%) for 2014 given the tremendous political uncertainty confronting the Kingdom.
In my view, Thailand risks foregoing a golden opportunity to grow "well" in 2014 and "recover" some of its economic lost ground in 2013. Recent economic numbers from the US and other major economies (China, Euro-Area, Japan etc) suggest economic resilience and global GDP growth is seen accelerating from around 2.5% in 2013 to around 3.5% in 2014. The export driven Thai economy is thus in an excellent position to grow much faster given that export is roughly 70% of its GDP.
However, without a smooth Feb 2 election that will produce a democratically elected government and end all political protests, the Thai economy may not able to pursue its normal growth trajectory and risk growing at sub-par speed again. This will generate a great deal of negative consequences for Thai businesses and working people.
What is at stake is not just the upholding of democracy, but also the economic welfare of all Thai people. Embrace the Feb 2 election and allows the Kingdom to move on ...