Thai exports recorded 8% growth in January, Deputy Prime Minister and Trade Minister Jurin Laksanawisit said on March 2.
Jurin and Boonyarit Kalayanamit, the Permanent Secretary for Commerce, held a press conference at the Ministry of Commerce to announce the January export figures.
Jurin said the January 2022 export figures came out late because the Customs Department was revising its HS (harmonized system) code, which must be reviewed every five years.
The minister said exports rose 8% in January with a total value of 708.31 billion baht ($21.8 billion).
The top 10 fastest growing markets are: India (31.9%), Russia (31.9%), UK (29.7%), South Korea (26.8% ), the United States (24.1%), Canada (13.6%). percent), ASEAN (13.2 percent), China (6.8 percent), Latin America (five percent) and the EU (1.4 percent).
Jurin said the country has seen growth mainly because his ministry has worked closely with the private sector to boost exports.
Moreover, the manufacturing sector was expanding globally, which was reflected in the global manufacturing index which exceeded 50 points for 19 consecutive months.
Another factor is that the container shortage at Laem Chabang deepwater port and Bangkok port has eased, Jurin said. He said the private sector and US authorities were working night and day and on holidays to expedite the clearance of goods so containers could be recycled for use in exports.
Jurin added that the figure was well above the 0.3% growth in January 2021.
The ministry maintained its export target for this year of growth of three to four percent despite the Russian-Ukrainian war, Jurin said.
The minister said the permanent secretary has been instructed to discuss the war-related situation with the Thai Chamber of Commerce, the Federation of Thai Industries and the National Board of Thai Shippers on measures to mitigate the impact of the war.
Jurin said the discussion concluded that the current situation would not affect Thai exports much as exports to Russia accounted for only 0.38% of all export figures and only 0.04% to Ukraine. .
He said the dispute could affect long term due to rising costs due to rising oil prices.
The meeting discussed that if some ports in Russia and Ukraine remained closed due to war, new ports would have to be found and shipping costs would increase.
The meeting also realized that the war could affect the prices of imported materials, such as steel for making cans and for construction and grain for making animal feed, as Russia and the Ukraine are major wheat exporters.
The meeting also discussed a measure allowing Thailand to seek new markets in the Middle East, Africa and Latin America to replace markets in Russia and Ukraine.
Jurin said the meeting also discussed finding alternative markets where Thailand could replace Russia and Ukraine. For example, Thailand could try to export tapioca to China to replace Ukrainian corn or export rubber products to the United States to replace Ukrainian products.
Jurin said he told the permanent secretary to work closely with the three organizations to find measures to lessen the impact of the war.
THE NATION (THAILAND)/ASIA NEWS NETWORK