Agricultural sector expanded by 8.6% compared to a 1.8% growth in the previous quarter. Such acceleration was driven mainly by agriculture, hunting and forestry, which grew by 14.8%. Livestock production grew by 3.1%, a slight slowdown from the previous quarter. This was due to a slowdown in chicken production in response to external demand while swine, dairy products and hen’s eggs production showed robust growth. Fishery declined by 6.4% compared to an increase by 3.7% in the previous quarter as shrimp and fish production decreased along with the external demand.
Non-agricultural sector grew by 2.7%, compared to a rise of 4.7% in previous quarter. This was mainly due to a 1.1% fall in manufacturing sector as manufacturing for exports contracted while manufacturing for domestic consumption continued to grow. Meanwhile, mining and quarrying, construction and transport and communication accelerated by 12.2%, 9.8% and 8.0%, respectively. Growths in all other sectors i.e. electricity, gas and water supply wholesale and retail trade, hotels and restaurants, financial intermediation and other services sectors slowed down.
Household consumption grew by 6.0% from a 5.3% rise in previous quarter. Various on-going economic stimulus schemes by the government coupled with the low employment rate raised consumer’s confidence and, hence, spending. Consumption on durables, namely motor vehicles, as well as non-durables e.g. food, beverages, drinking water, electricity, fuel, and medicine increased noticeably.
Government consumption rose by 9.0% due to a 4.2% rise of compensation of employees and a 13.0% rise of net purchases of goods and services.
Total investment expanded by 15.5% faster than a 10.2% rise in previous quarter. The private investment increased by 16.2% as factories recovering from the flood acquired new machinery and equipment. Likewise, public investment expanded by 13.2%, compared to a 4.0% growth in previous quarter.
Changes in inventories at current market prices valued at Baht 94,701 million, declining from previous quarter. As overall production slowed down while households and government consumption as well as exports (Q-o-Q) continued to increase, inventory of manufacturing products diminished. Moreover, exports of non-monetary gold increased considerably as investors sold off to capture rising gold price.
For the external sector, merchandized trade and service balance registered a surplus of Baht 119.2 billion, in contrast to a deficit of Baht 40.9 billion in previous quarter. The surplus was a result of a service balance surplus of Baht 152.8 billion while the merchandized trade registered a deficit of Baht 33.6 billion.