The economy rebounded last year from flooding that swamped industrial
estates, farmland, and parts of the capital Bangkok in late 2011. GDP rose
by 6.4% in 2012 compared with just 0.1% in the previous...
year (Figure 3.30.1).
Private consumption increased by 6.6% to contribute about half
of total GDP growth. Consumption was stimulated by demand to
replace household items after the floods and by several government
policies. These included increases in minimum wages by up to 40% in
seven provinces and in public service salaries, a tax rebate to first-time
buyers of domestically made cars, which some 1.2 million car buyers
took advantage of, tax breaks for first-time buyers of houses, and a
government decision to buy unmilled rice from farmers at prices well
above international levels.
Growth in employment and wages supported consumption, as average
wages rose by 11.8% and employment by 1.2%. The unemployment rate fell
to just 0.5% by year-end.
Fixed capital investment rose by 13.3%, propelled by the reconstruction
of flood-damaged factories, houses, and other infrastructure and the
replacement of capital equipment. Public construction was spurred by
the building of mass rapid transit projects in Bangkok and mobile
However, external demand weakened last year due to sagging
economic growth in major markets and disruption to export-oriented
manufacturing caused by the floods. Net exports of goods and services
acted as a drag on GDP growth.
National Economic and Social Development Board. http://www.nesdb.go.th (accessed 11 March 2013)
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