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Thai commerce ministry sees August inflation below 8%


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August 10, 2008

Thai commerce ministry sees August inflation below 8%
Thailand’s August inflation is expected to fall below 8 percent, down from 9.2 percent registered in July, due to falling global oil prices and government economic, said the Thai News Agency (TNA) on Saturday.

TNA report that Siripol Yodmuangcharoen, Thai permanent secretary for commerce, said inflation in August is projected to retreat from July and that his ministry is monitoring closely the movements of world oil prices.

Siripol said he is confident that inflation in Thailand will not rise too high if global oil prices continue to decline, and with the already implemented six governmental measures plus several other initiatives to be introduced by the ministry should help lower inflationary pressure.

The six measures were implemented August 1, except for the reduced excise tax on fuel which began July 25.

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The Thai government’s measures are aimed at boosting the country’s economy, which has become sluggish due to soaring oil prices, and also to assist the poor and low income wage-earners.

Other measures are postponing a price increase for the liquefied petroleum gas used by householders, free tap water used at less than 50 cubic metres monthly and free electricity used less than 80 units per month by households, with the government taking up the income shortfall.

For households using less than 150 units of power per month, the government can pay half the bill.

Free travel on 800 ordinary buses operated by BMTA on 73 routes within Bangkok and the metropolitan region, and free travel on third class railway carriages is also featured.

Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej earlier said the measures will cost the government about 46 billion baht ($1.4 billion).

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