Thai central bank holds policy rate unchanged to support growth

The Bank of Thailand has announced to hold its benchmark interest rate unchanged again at a record low level to help support economic growth.

The central bank’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) voted unanimously to maintain its policy rate at 0.5 per cent, for the 14th consecutive meeting and since May 2020, saying that downside risk to growth improved, but upside inflationary risk increased due to rising energy and food prices, reports Xinhua news agency.

The MPC said it expected the country’s economy to continue to recover, as the Omicron variant of Covid-19 would exert limited pressure on the public health system, adding that it would closely monitor the development of the pandemic situation.

The committee expected that the country’s growth this year will be driven by expansion in exports and an increase in foreign tourists due to faster-than-expected relaxation of travel restrictions.

However, the number of foreign tourist arrivals this year would remain below the pre-pandemic levels, it said.

It would also monitor the development of the labour market as well as the impact of higher living costs given that income had not fully recovered.

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