11 July 2024

COVID-19 can be blamed for pushing Thai household debt to its highest level in 12 years, around 480,000 baht per household, said The University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce (UTCC).

The rector of UTCC, Thanawat Polwichai (ธนวรรธน์ พลวิชัย), said that the data collected from over 1,000 participants shows that the household debt in 2020 reached 483,950 baht per household surveyed, due to the higher costs of living and lack of income due to unemployment. The survey also shows that more than 70 percent of the debt is new, and is a result of the economic crisis caused by COVID-19.

The participants said they may miss loan or credit repayments, 72 percent blamed the ailing economy, around 60 percent simply said their income does not match the expenses, and around 55 percent said they are earning less than before.

Though household debt in 2020 was the highest level in over a decade, over 75 percent is owed to legitimate lenders.

Thanawat suggested that the government should solve the household debt crisis with more stimulus measures and help self-employed to avoid missing their repayments, thus creating more debt