By THE NATION
But it sees the economy recovering in the second half of the year and revised its estimate for economic growth in 2021 from 3.1 to 3.5 per cent.
Covid-19 is throttling tourism and sharply affecting domestic consumption, it said, and that will only worsen is the contagion spreads. Slowdowns in Chinese production will meanwhile have a temporary effect on the Thai supply chain and production.
Phatra believes delays in approving the fiscal 2020 budget and severe drought will also mire the economy in the short term, especially in the first quarter.
And Thai manufacturing is suffering by reduced exports, the strong baht and lowered competitiveness, while the agriculture sector is wrestling with drought and low prices.
Phatra expects the government to issue more measures to improve the economy situation, such as decreasing the interest policy by 25 basis points at mid-year.