Thailand: Trade balance swings back into black in December
Thailand’s external sector logged a trade surplus of USD 1.1 billion in December, contrasting the USD 1.2 billion shortfall in November and markedly above the USD 220 million deficit of December 2017. The 12-month moving sum of the trade balance doubled from USD 1.2 billion in November to USD 2.4 billion in December.
Exports contracted 1.7% year-on-year in December, which was larger than November’s 0.9% drop. The result came on the tails of stronger falls in shipments of automatic data processing machines and parts, rubber and, electronic integrated circuits. Rice exports also dropped but at a softer rate than in the prior month. Imports contracted a sharp 8.1% in December, swinging from the strong 14.7% increase seen in November.