Thailand’s growth forecast cut on back of COVID-19 spikes hinh anh 1Commuters wearing protective face masks walk on Pratunam pier in Bangkok on April 26, 2021. (Photo: Reuters/VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – Kasikorn Research Centre, a think tank of Thailand, has lowered its forecast for the country's economic growth this year to 1 percent from a previous estimate of 1.8 percent as a prolonged wave of COVID-19 outbreaks has dampened growth outlook.

Due to limitations of Thailand's public health system, more stringent COVID-19 containment measures have been implemented, which would further affect the business sector and employment and in turn the purchasing power and confidence of consumers, China’s Xinhua News Agency quoted the research centre as saying.

The emergence of new COVID-19 variants and rapid increases in infections in many countries, including Thailand, have forced the research centre to cut its 2021 forecast for the number of international tourist arrivals to between 250,000 and 650,000, from a prior projection of up to 1.2 million.

On July 26, Thailand reported 15,376 new COVID-19 cases, a record daily rise for the second day in a row, taking the total number of infections to 512,678.

The worsening situation has been overwhelming the country's medical system and prompted the government to tighten restrictions, including the closure of shopping centres, a night-time curfew and curbing travels in worst-hit regions.

If the pandemic persists, the research centre expected the Thai government to introduce additional relief measures to boost economic growth.

The research centre said the global economy is set to recover faster than expected, which would lift Thailand's exports. It projected the country's exports to grow 11.5 percent from one year earlier in 2021.

Thailand's economy plunged 6.1 percent year on year in 2020, its worst performance in more than two decades./.