NESDC: Thai economy posts highest contraction since 1998 hinh anh 1In Thailand (Photo: Asia Globe)

Bangkok (VNA) – The State planning agency National Economic and Social Development Council (NESDC) of Thailand said on February 15 that the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) shrank 6.1 percent in 2020 due to the wide spread of COVID-19 pandemic, the highest contraction in the past more than two decades.

NESDC Secretary General Danucha Pichayanan said Thailand’s GDP rose by 1.3 percent quarter-on-quarter in the fourth quarter of 2020, but fell by 4.2 percent annually.

The NESDC also downgraded its economic growth forecast for this year to 2.5-3.5 percent from 3.5-4.5 percent made earlier.

It also expected that export, Thailand’s key growth driving force, will increase by 5.8 percent this year instead of 4.2 percent as previously forecasted. However, the number of foreign tourists visiting Thailand is expected to be around 3.2 million, down from initial forecast of 5 million.

The same day, the Thai Cabinet adopted a budget of 37.1 billion THB (1.24 billion USD) to support 9.27 million low-income workers amid the second COVID-19 outbreak, following a relief package worth 210 billion THB for nearly 31 million people./.