Thailand’s economic growth projected at 3.5-4.5 percent this year hinh anh 1Tourists in Thailand (Photo: Xinhua/VNA)
Bangkok (VNA) - Thai Minister of Finance Arkhom Termpittayapaisith has forecast the country’s economy would grow 3.5-4.5 percent this year driven by fiscal policy, exports and investment, despite an outbreak of the Omicron coronavirus variant remaining a challenge.

According to him, 2021’s growth is estimated at only 1 percent, as the vital tourism sector has yet to recover significantly. However, the resumption of Thailand's quarantine waiver for foreign tourists from next month is expected to help boost the recovery.

The Thai Government plans to invest 900 billion baht (27.4 billion USD) in infrastructure projects this year, Arkhom said, adding there are also other public-private investment projects. After earlier 1.5 trillion baht borrowing plans, the government can still borrow a further 10 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) if needed.

With the price of goods rising, he said the government will try to keep inflation within its 1-3 percent target range.

Sakkapop Panyanukul, a senior director at the Bank of Thailand (BoT), stated that inflation could be higher than forecasts but would not disrupt the recovery. The BoT sees inflation at 1.7 percent in 2022 and 1.4 percent next year.

The central bank expects GDP to show growth of almost 1 percent in 2021, and 3.4 percent this year, which was recently trimmed from 3.9 percent following the Omicron outbreak, he said.