Industrial confidence index falls to 91.7 in December
The Industrial confidence index for December 2019 dropped to 91.7, from 92.3 the previous month, due to industrial operators’ concerns over domestic purchasing power and this year’s drought, which is more severe than in recent years and is expected to cause extensive damage to crops and affect farmers’ incomes.
Mr. Suphan Mongkolsuthee, president of Federation of Thai Industries, said today that purchase orders and sales of both durable and nondurable goods have dropped, while the strong baht currency and global economic fluctuations have combined to affect Thai exports.
Citing a nationwide opinion survey of 1,207 entrepreneurs in 45 industrial groups in December, he said that 70.1% are concerned about global economic uncertainty, 61.2% worry about the strong baht, 43.2% are concerned about domestic politics, 39.6% worry about oil prices and 20.6% about loan interest rates.
The FTI has forecast that the index for the next quarter will slip further, due to concerns over local and global economic uncertainties, increased minimum wages and conflict in the Middle East, among others.
The FTI has suggested that the government deploy measures to address the drought in earnest and make its procurement process more flexible.