Thailand: Export growth rate eases amid range of challenges

Thailand’s export growth slowed in July, mainly attributed to a decrease in fruit shipments, a semiconductor shortage that affected production in related sectors, and lockdown measures in some major Chinese cities that interrupted production and lengthened delivery times.

The Commerce Ministry reported on Friday the customs-cleared value of the country’s exports continued to expand — for the 17th consecutive month — but at a slower growth rate of 4.3% to US$23.6 billion (829 billion baht) after robust growth of 11.9% in June, a 10.5% uptick in May, a 9.9% increase in April, and a jump of 19.5% in March, which was the highest level since records began in 1991.

Thai exports from the real sector (excluding gold, oil-related products and weaponry) rose by 4.1% after healthy increases of 10.4% in June, 11.1% in May, 6.9% in April and 8.9% in March.

Supporting factors include higher prices of agricultural and food products as world output has been disrupted by many factors, such as Ukraine’s limited grain exports in the previous period and import restrictions in some countries.