BANGKOK, Feb. 7 (Xinhua) -- Thailand's exports are expected to expand 1 to 2 percent this year, weighed down by slowing global demand and high production costs, the country's shippers' council said on Tuesday.
As a main driver of economic growth, exports are subject to the strengthening of the Thai baht as shippers lose their capacity to compete on price, particularly with trade partners and competitors with weaker currencies, Thai National Shippers' Council (TNSC) Chairman Chaichan Chareonsuk told a news conference.
Exports are projected to fall 3.7 percent year on year in the first quarter before recovering to a 0.7 percent drop in the second quarter and showing gains in the second half of this year, according to a statement issued by the TNSC.
The TNSC also urged the central bank to maintain Thai baht's stability and interest rates at appropriate levels, Chaichan said.
Despite several negative factors, China's recovery boosts global economic activities, meaning more opportunities for Thai exporters, he added.