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Thailand’s inflation rate in April higher for the first time in seven months

Written by World News

Thailand’s inflation rate for April increased by 0.9%, which is the first rise in seven months, with the expectation that the rate of inflation in the second quarter will increase by 0.8%-1.0%, according to Poonpong Naiyanapakorn, director of the Trade Policy and Strategy Office.

The consumer price index for April is equivalent to 108.16, compared to the same period last year, representing an increase of 0.19%. The rise in the inflation rate is being attributed to oil price rises and the increase of several agricultural produce prices, vegetables and fruits in particular, due to lower output as a result of the hot weather and drought.

Poonpong explained that 430 items were used in the calculation of the inflation rate for April. Of those, the prices of 279 items have increased, 53 remain unchanged and the prices of the remaining 101 items have dropped.

These resulted in the prices of the food and non-alcoholic drinks category increasing by 0.2%. The prices of pork, mackerel, vegetable oil and garlic have, however, reduced.

The prices of non-food and alcoholic drink items have increased by 0.12% on average, as a direct result of the increased prices of gasohol 95 and 91, E20 and benzine 95.

The average consumer price index for four months saw a 0.55% drop from the same period last year, but basic inflation for April increased by 0.37% and increased by an average 0.42% for the first four months of this year.

Poonpong predicted that inflation in May will increase by 1.0%-1.5%, compared to the same period last year, mainly due to the price increases of several agricultural products.

Inflation during the remaining eight months is tending toincrease steadily, but at a minimal rate. He warns, however, that the minimum wage increase to 400 baht and the 10,000 baht payments in the “digital wallet” scheme may increase inflation further increase, but it will still be within the 1%range, on the assumption that economic growth is between 2.2% and 3.2%, global crude oil prices are between 80 and 90 US dollars per barrel and the baht currency is 34.5-36.5 baht against US dollar.

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