Thailand's industrial sentiment rose for a sixth straight month in November, reaching a 41-month high, bolstered by a recovery in domestic demand and tourism as foreign visitors returned, an industries group said on Tuesday.
The Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) said its industries sentiment index rose slightly to 93.5 in November from 93.1 in the previous month.
The Southeast Asian country received 10 million foreign tourist arrivals as of last week and the government is expecting the number to double next year. There were just 428,000 foreign tourists last year, compared with nearly 40 million foreign tourists in pre-pandemic 2019.
Sentiment was also helped by an improved semiconductor shortage which was good for automobile and electronic production, FTI chairman Kriengkrai Thiennukul said in a statement.
The outlook, however, was less bright as the FTI's index that projects industrial sentiment over the next three months dropped for a second straight month in November to 97.0 from 98.8 in October.
Industries were concerned about rising costs due to higher raw material and utility prices, wages and loan interest rates, Kriengkrai said.
The export sector, a key driver of Thai growth, also faced weaker global demand while strength in the baht currency reduced trade competitiveness, he added. (Reporting by Satawasin Staporncharnchai Editing by Kanupriya Kapoor)