Thai Feb consumer confidence at four-year high on support measures, tourism


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BANGKOK, March 7 (Reuters) - Thai consumer confidence rose in February, reaching the highest level in 48 months, bolstered by government support measures and tourism, a survey showed on Thursday.

The consumer index of the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce THCONF=ECI increased for the seventh straight month to reach 63.8 in February from 62.9 in January, the university said in a statement.

"Consumer confidence should improve further, especially if the government can boost the economy with its planned policies in the first half of 2024," the university said.

Consumers are more confident since the government introduced measures to cut living costs and stimulate other economic activity, it said.

However, they are still worried about a global economic slowdown and geopolitical conflicts, which could impact Thai exports, the university said.

Thailand's government has insisted it will go ahead with a 500 billion baht ($14 billion) handout policy for 50 million people through a mobile app to be spent within six months in their local communities.

Other measures to try to boost the economy include waiving visas for Chinese and Indian nationals to encourage inbound travel.

In the January to March 3 period, Thailand received 6.73 million foreign visitors, up 49% year-on-year, with visitors from China reaching 1.2 million.

The government is now aiming for a record of 40 million foreign visitors this year after welcoming 28 million visitors last year.

Southeast Asia's second-largest economy expanded 1.9% last year.

($1 = 35.56 baht)

(Reporting by Orathai Sriring and Satawasin Staporncharnchai, Writing by Chayut Setboonsarng; Editing by Kanupriya Kapoor)


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