Thailand’s exports are expected to grow 15 percent next year, in line with earlier forecasts, because factories affected by severe floods should mostly resume business this month, Commerce minister Kittirat Na Ranong said on Wednesday.
‘Exports will grow 15 percent, close to this year’s level, because 90 percent of flood-hit factories will probably get back to work this month,’ said Kittirat, who is also deputy prime minister in charge of the economy.
‘Production and exports will return to normal in the first quarter of next year.’
Kittirat said Thai products should still be in demand because of their good quality and reasonable prices, despite problems in the United States and Europe.
His ministry recently said the flooding could drag exports down 15 percent in the current quarter from a year earlier.
The Bank of Thailand has forecast export growth of 20.1 percent for this year and just 7.9 percent for 2012.
In October, the ministry said 2012 export growth might not reach the forecast 15 percent as the floods shut down seven big industrial estates.