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August 30, 2007
Customs to revise export growth estimate

Thailand's Customs Department is poised to revise its export growth estimate after July data showed the country's exports expanding by only 5.9 per cent.

Director-General Chavalit Sethameteekul said many state agencies, including the ministries of commerce and finance, were monitoring and re-estimating their export growth projections upon finding that exports in July had dropped sharply from the previous month.

He said the state agencies needed to seek the opinions of exporters regarding how much total exports in August and the following months would increase or decrease so that they could find appropriate measures to stimulate its growth.

Mr. Chavalit said the department viewed ASEAN as one of the key potential export destinations where Thailand could conduct trade activities, particularly along common borders with member countries.

The border trade with neighbouring countries continued to grow with an annual trade value of over Bt200-300 billion. Such trade is supported by letters of credit (LC).

The non-LC border trade, if brought into focus for value calculation, would outpace LC-supported transactions.

He believed the LC and non-LC border trade activities would increase one to two times in the next five years.

So, he viewed Thailand should accelerate developing the border trade with its neighbouring countries.

In particular, it should build bridges across border rivers and provide links to neighbouring trade systems.

At present, he said, Thailand and China had joined together to build bridges at different border points.

The bridges, when completed, would facilitate cargo transport from Thailand to China, Vietnam, Myanmar and many other countries. TNA reports

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