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This year, economists predict a baht to dollar exchange rate of 38


Kasikorn Bank’s head of capital markets research believes domestic and foreign forces will keep the baht and global money markets unstable. CIMBT official says higher policy rate is related to global inflation. K Bank expects that if tourism increases at the end of the year, the baht may move back to 35 per dollar. The MPC is expected to raise the policy rate to 1.25 percent in November, boosting the baht. CIMBT hopes a strong tourism revival can save and rebuild Thailand’s economy, like many in the government and private sector. As more tourists come to the country, inflation should reduce as the economy stabilizes and GDP grows. CIMBT recently raised its projection for GDP growth by the end of the year from 3.1% to 3.2%. That would boost the baht and keep it near 37 baht to the dollar, but it’s a temporary fix; the baht will plummet in value following.

With the US currency growing and Thailand’s faltering economy, the baht may fall below 38 per dollar by the end of the year.

Thailand’s inflation rate is anticipated to average 6.2% in 2022 and 2.6% in 2023. While the US currency continues to gain value due to hawkish federal fund rate hikes, the Bank of Thailand’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) may raise its benchmark policy rate from 0.75 to 1% next week. Amonthep Chawla, head of CIMB Thai Bank’s research economist office, agrees with the analysis and believes the baht would fall to 38 to one to the US dollar, although the bank of Thailand will raise its policy rate to 1.75 percent. He predicts 2.5% by 2023. We expect the central bank to boost its policy rate twice by 50 basis points this year to narrow the gap between Thailand’s rate and the fed funds rate. This should slow baht devaluation.

In just eight months, Phuket attracts 4 million visitors


Indians and Australians have been among the top tourists to Phuket in recent months (120,000 from May to September) (around 60,000 visitors between May – September). Year after year, travelers are drawn to Phuket by the spectacle of “Masongs” (human receptacles for Taoist gods) cutting their cheeks with pointed objects and by the mouthwatering cuisine. The Taoist celebration, which blends vegan food and self-mortification, will take place from September 25 to October 4. Russian tourists, who in the years before the pandemic grew to be the island’s second-largest international source market, continue to be a source of lost revenue for Phuket. The tourism sector in Phuket is on the upswing as Thailand’s High Season approaches.

According to Deputy Governor Pichet Panapong, Phuket has received four million domestic and foreign visitors so far in 2022, generating 66 billion baht for the local economy. International arrivals in Phuket are still just 40% of pre-pandemic levels, even though 3000–5000 tourists arrive on the island every day. As of October 1, Thailand will officially allow visitors to stay for longer periods by increasing visa-on-arrival validity from 15 to 30 days and visa exemptions from 30 to 45 days. The governor reports that domestic tourism to Phuket is at an amazing 85% of pre-pandemic levels. The festivities will begin with the Phuket Vegetarian Festival, also known as the Nine Emperor Gods Festival. During High Season, the government also intends to fly Russians into Thailand on chartered planes three times every week. The post-pandemic recovery of Phuket’s tourism business could benefit greatly from the improved connectivity between Thailand and Russia. The new developments will undoubtedly draw people to Thailand, particularly Phuket, which continues to be one of the most popular tourist destinations worldwide. On October 30, 2022, Aeroflot intends to resume direct flights between Russia and Phuket.

As Covid restrictions are relaxed, Thailand is observing the BQ.1.1 variation


Only 78 people have been infected by the BQ.1.1 variety, which was initially identified in the UK last month; nonetheless, those instances have already spread to ten different nations. The Public Health Ministry highlighted that populations who consistently receive vaccinations will have higher immunity to prevent any reappearance of the coronavirus and now advises a gap of around four months between each new vaccine booster. It is anticipated that the new, extremely contagious strain could proliferate swiftly and overtake the prevalent Covid variety in the world, the BA.5 strain. They also warned that the schedules for the next routine vaccinations can change if circumstances change, and the ministry is revising its estimates of how many vaccines to buy after initially projecting 80 million shots for the coming year. The destiny of the virus’ containment or spread in the upcoming months remains to be seen with Thailand gradually discontinuing vaccine passports and requiring Covid testing for arrivals.

A new, highly contagious variety of Omicron has been added to the country’s watch list as Thailand gets ready to remove the remainder of the country’s Covid-19 restrictions. Thailand is keeping a tight eye on the variant, according to the Centre for Medical Genomics at Ramathibodi Hospital, as the GISAID, which monitors Covid worldwide, has lately reported 28 new cases. Due to the current high immunization rates, many are receiving booster doses in addition to their two initial vaccinations, with some now receiving their second or third booster. Before issuing a formal recommendation on how frequently people should update their vaccines, the Department of Disease Control is currently doing a study in this area. Even though the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Public Health claims that Covid is under control in Thailand and that daily infections have decreased, threats like this new strain serve as a reminder of the ministry’s plan for routine annual or biannual booster shots to prevent this and any new variants from exploding into another epidemic.