The director of the UTCC’s Economic and Business Forecasting Centre, Thanawat Ponwichai, has said according to their calculations, the Thai economy will lose 300-400 billion baht ($9.73 billion to $12.98 billion) this year. He also said, if the flood water is quickly drained, Thailand’s economy may go back to a 4-5% growth by March next year.
The problem is, in this calculation, as many Bangkokians are still denying Bangkok will still be under water for another month, with more areas of the city succumbing soon, it’s likely a month more of flood water probably hasn’t been taken into consideration. In fact, if flood waters continue to creep towards downtown Bangkok, inundating neighborhood after neighborhood, as they currently are doing, it’s even more likely losses to the Thai economy could top 500 billion baht ($16.2 billion) on up.
Tourism has been affected. The export sector is losing billions. With up to one third of Thailand’s rice crops affected, and vegetable and fruit crops badly affected, agriculture is seeing massive losses. And don’t even think about industry in Thailand, where most industrial estates in Bangkok and in cities close to it, are now under water. Several American companies have already pulled out of Thailand — permanently. A number of Japanese companies are threatening to do the same — if the Thai government can’t get a handle on the crisis soon, that is.
So, 300-400 billion baht? Unfortunately, those numbers might still be a little low. Sad doesn’t even begin to describe it.