Thai government maintains 3 percent GDP growth target hinh anh 1The government is maintaining its target for GDP growth of 3 percent this year, according to Kobsak Pootrakool, deputy secretary-general to Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha.(Photo:

Bangkok (VNA) – The Thai government is maintaining its target for GDP growth of 3 percent this year, with a series of stimulus measures to boost economic growth.

Deputy Secretary-general to Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha for political affairs Kobsak Pootrakool held a sub-committee meeting on October 4 to review economic development.

He said the meeting’s assessments of figures in the second quarter and the first two months of the third quarter lead it to believe 3 percent is achievable.

The tourism sector will be the main driver of the economy this year, while export is expected to slow down, he said, adding the country will welcome some 20 million foreign arrivals in the second half.

During the first eight months of 2019, there were 26.5 million foreign visitors, generating 1.29 trillion THB (42.4 million USD) in revenue, up 2.9 percent from the same time last year.

According to Kobsak, the fourth quarter is normally the high season for tourism, and the government expects 14 million visitors in the remaining four months of the year, pushing foreign visitors to 40.5 million for the year.

The Tourism and Sports Ministry targeted 39.8 million foreign tourists, generating 2.04 trillion THB in revenue.

Kobsak said the economic cabinet will have a meeting on October 11, and will consider new tourism stimulus measures to increase the number of foreign arrivals as well as tourists’ spending.

The Thai economy grew at its slowest rate in five years in the second quarter due to the US-China trade tension as well as the strong baht that affected export and tourism.

Earlier, Kasikorn Research Centre (K-Research) slashed its 2019 GDP growth forecast from the previous projection of 3.1 percent to 2.8 percent amid the escalating US-China trade dispute. The research house also cut its export growth outlook from zero to a 1 percent contraction for this year after shipments shrank 2.2 percent year-on-year in the first eight months.

It predicted the Thai economy to grow at 2.5-3 percent, and exports to fall 2 percent in 2020./.