Thailand’s March Exports Contract by 4.2%, Better than Forecasts

March saw the sixth consecutive month of weakening exports for Thailand, with the Ministry of Commerce reporting a 4.2% year-over-year decline. This was less severe than the 14.0% contraction predicted by a Reuters poll.

The ministry said that the decline was due to an overall slowing in demand around the world. The figure was also marginally better than the 4.7% decline recorded in February.

Exports of agricultural and industrial products improved in March, the ministry said in a statement.

Imports fell by 7.1% in March compared to the same month a year ago, which was more than the 4.7% decrease that had been predicted, and led to a trade surplus of $2.72 billion.

The ministry has remained committed to its goal of a 1%-2% increase in exports for 2023.