11 July 2024

Thailand’s consumer confidence index (CCI) for the month of May plunged to its lowest point in 22 years and eight months, due to impacts from the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic and political instability, said Mr. Thanawat Pholvichai, rector of Thai Chamber of Commerce University and chairman of the university’s economic and business forecasting centre.

The centre gauged the opinions of 2,243 consumers from across the country in May about their current confidence in the state of the economy.

Mr. Thanawat said that the CCI fell from 46.0 in April to 44.7 in May, which was the lowest in 22 years and eight months, since the system was introduced in October 1998, adding that the indices of all items also nosedived, including the overall economic confidence index, which fell to 38.9 from 40.3 in April, job opportunity confidence index to 41.3 from 42.9 and future revenue confidence index from 54.7 to 53.8.

He noted, however, that the unprecedented low CCI is expected, because of the high COVID-19 infection rates in April and May, which caused widespread anxiety among consumers, resulting in hesitation to spend, while tourism remains stagnant.

Nevertheless, Mr. Thanawat said he expects the CCI in June to pick up slightly, as more people in Thailand will have been inoculated, even though the amount of vaccines available is insufficient to meet the demand.

He is optimistic that Thailand’s growth rate for the whole year may be about two percent.