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Thailand Economy Profile 2018

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Economy - overviewWith a relatively well-developed infrastructure, a free-enterprise economy, and generally pro-investment policies, Thailand is highly dependent on international trade, with exports accounting for about two-thirds of GDP. Thailand’s exports include electronics, agricultural commodities, automobiles and parts, and processed foods. The industry and service sectors produce about 90% of GDP. The agricultural sector, comprised mostly of small-scale farms, contributes only 10% of GDP but employs about one-third of the labor force. Thailand has attracted an estimated 3.0-4.5 million migrant workers, mostly from neighboring countries.

Over the last few decades, Thailand has sustained strong growth and has reduced poverty substantially. In 2013, the Thai Government implemented a nationwide 300 baht (roughly $10) per day minimum wage policy and deployed new tax reforms designed to lower rates on middle-income earners.

Growth has slowed in the last few years, however, due to domestic political turmoil and sluggish global demand. Nevertheless, Thailand’s economic fundamentals are sound, with low inflation, low unemployment, and reasonable public and external debt levels. Tourism and government spending - mostly on infrastructure and short-term stimulus measures – have helped to boost the economy, and The Bank of Thailand has been supportive, with several interest rate reductions.

Over the longer-term, Thailand faces labor shortages, and domestic debt levels, political uncertainty, and an aging population pose risks to growth.
GDP (purchasing power parity)$1.229 trillion (2017 est.)
$1.185 trillion (2016 est.)
$1.148 trillion (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP (official exchange rate)$437.8 billion (2016 est.)
GDP - real growth rate3.7% (2017 est.)
3.2% (2016 est.)
2.9% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$17,800 (2017 est.)
$17,200 (2016 est.)
$16,700 (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
Gross national saving32.8% of GDP (2017 est.)
33.5% of GDP (2016 est.)
30.3% of GDP (2015 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 50.1%
government consumption: 17%
investment in fixed capital: 24.2%
investment in inventories: -7%
exports of goods and services: 70.4%
imports of goods and services: -54.7% (2017 est.)
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 8.2%
industry: 36.2%
services: 55.6% (2017 est.)
Population below poverty line7.2% (2015 est.)
Labor force38.37 million (2017 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 31.8%
industry: 16.7%
services: 51.5% (2015 est.)
Unemployment rate0.7% (2017 est.)
0.8% (2016 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24total: 0.9%
male: 0.8%
female: 1.1% (2015 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 2.8%
highest 10%: 31.5% (2009 est.)
Distribution of family income - Gini index44.5 (2015)
48.4 (2011)
Budgetrevenues: $79.6 billion
expenditures: $90.56 billion (2017 est.)
Taxes and other revenues18.2% of GDP (2017 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-2.5% of GDP (2017 est.)
Public debt44.1% of GDP (2017 est.)
41.2% of GDP (2016 est.)
note: data cover general government debt, and includes debt instruments issued (or owned) by government entities other than the treasury; the data include treasury debt held by foreign entities; the data include debt issued by subnational entities, as well as intra-governmental debt; intra-governmental debt consists of treasury borrowings from surpluses in the social funds, such as for retirement, medical care, and unemployment; debt instruments for the social funds are sold at public auctions
Inflation rate (consumer prices)0.6% (2017 est.)
0.2% (2016 est.)
Central bank discount rate1.5% (31 December 2016)
1.5% (31 December 2015)
Commercial bank prime lending rate6.2% (31 December 2017 est.)
6.31% (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of narrow money$56.36 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$52.03 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of broad money$546.1 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$510.4 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$537.2 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$507.5 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$348.8 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$430.4 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
$354.4 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
Agriculture - productsrice, cassava (manioc, tapioca), rubber, corn, sugarcane, coconuts, palm oil, pineapple, livestock, fish products
Industriestourism, textiles and garments, agricultural processing, beverages, tobacco, cement, light manufacturing such as jewelry and electric appliances, computers and parts, integrated circuits, furniture, plastics, automobiles and automotive parts, agricultural machinery, air conditioning and refrigeration, ceramics, aluminum, chemical, environmental management, glass, granite and marble, leather, machinery and metal work, petrochemical, petroleum refining, pharmaceuticals, printing, pulp and paper, rubber, sugar, rice, fishing, cassava, world's second-largest tungsten producer and third-largest tin producer
Industrial production growth rate3.6% (2017 est.)
Current Account Balance$44 billion (2017 est.)
$46.83 billion (2016 est.)
Exports$228.2 billion (2017 est.)
$214.3 billion (2016 est.)
Exports - commoditiesautomobiles and parts, computer and parts, jewelry and precious stones, polymers of ethylene in primary forms, refine fuels, electronic integrated circuits, chemical products, rice, fish products, rubber products, sugar, cassava, poultry, machinery and parts, iron and steel and their products
Exports - partnersUS 11.4%, China 11.1%, Japan 9.6%, Hong Kong 5.3%, Australia 4.8%, Malaysia 4.5%, Vietnam 4.4% (2016)
Imports$190 billion (2017 est.)
$177.7 billion (2016 est.)
Imports - commoditiesmachinery and parts, crude oil, electrical machinery and parts, chemicals, iron & steel and product, electronic integrated circuit, automobile’s parts, jewelry including silver bars and gold, computers and parts, electrical household appliances, soybean, soybean meal, wheat, cotton, dairy products
Imports - partnersChina 21.6%, Japan 15.8%, US 6.2%, Malaysia 5.6% (2016)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$193.5 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$171.9 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Debt - external$135.5 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$130.6 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home$205.5 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$193.5 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad$112.3 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$96.27 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Exchange ratesbaht per US dollar -
34.34 (2017 est.)
35.296 (2016 est.)
35.296 (2015 est.)
34.248 (2014 est.)
32.48 (2013 est.)
Fiscal year1 October - 30 September

Source: CIA World Factbook
This page was last updated on January 20, 2018

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