A view of Bangkok, the capital city of Thailand (Source: oneyoungworld.com)

Hanoi (VNA) – Thailand’s economy saw a slower growth than expected in the first quarter of 2019, reaching the lowest level in the last four years.

Local media cited a report showing that the second largest economy in Southeast Asia grew by just 2.8 percent, lower than the 3 percent forecasted by the news agency Reuters.

In November and December 2018, the country’s annual economic growth prediction was adjusted to 3.6 percent from the previous estimate of 3.7 percent. On a quarterly basis, the growth was seasonally adjusted by 1 percent, weaker than poll’s 1.4 percent forecast.

The Thai government has also adjusted GDP growth prediction for 2019 from 3.5-4.5 percent given in February to between 3.3-3.8 percent. The export revenue forecast was also down from 4.1 percent to 2.2 percent.

The Bangkok Post website posted a story stating that Thailand’s exports may be at the lowest growth in the past four years as a result of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) and the renewed Sino-US trade war. 

Aat Pisanwanich, Director of the Centre for International Trade Studies at the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, said the latest study puts export growth this year at 0.5-1 percent, compared with a 3 percent growth forecast made in February. 

The Bank of Thailand (BoT) has decided to keep its policy rate unchanged at 1.75 percent for the rest of 2019. The bank affirmed that it will continue maintaining measures to promote growth amidst the existing risks to the financial stability.–VNA