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Thai Retail Market Seen Shrinking 12% This Year

Shopping Retail Mall Thailand Bangkok

The Thai Retailers Association predicted Thailand’s retail market will contract 12 percent this year if the government can’t quickly provide financial aid and spur domestic consumption.

Association Vice President Chatrchai Toungratanaphan said up to 270 billion baht in retail sales could be lost from May through August because of the fresh Covid-19 outbreaks.

Retailers are still finding it hard to secure new loans from banks, with only 10 percent of 30,000 applicants receiving approval.

He said retail sentiment index stood at 16.4 in July, the lowest in 16 months, because of the fast and furious spread of the coronavirus’ delta variant. The association also expects sentiment in the next three months will remain relatively low, at about 27.6.

 Chatrchai said Thailand’s retail sector may take longer than expected to recover level, with full recovery unlikely until mid-2023.

The association is calling for urgent government assistance measures, including a 50 percent co-payment subsidy on rental fees and employees’ wages for at least six months as well as a 50 percent utility bill reduction for six months.