Beset by Tourism Woes, Bank of Thailand Slashes Policy Rate

Tourists walk past a gun range on Koh Samui on Jan. 30, 2020.

BANGKOK (Xinhua) — The Bank of Thailand (BoT) on Wednesday slashed its policy rate by 25 basis points to a fresh record low of 1 percent in the year 2020’s first meeting.

In the BoT’s statement issued on Wednesday, the central bank said it had to lower its policy rate to 1 percent to shore up the Thai economy battered by a massive drop in tourism and the months-long delay in the fiscal 2020 budget bill.

The economic growth risk is now slanting to the downside and the growth is likely below its potential, while financial stability becomes more fragile due to the economic slowdown, said the BoT statement.

The massive drop in tourism and the postponement of the budget bill have dealt further blows to an already sagging economy, both factors would have a significant impact on the economy, particularly in the first three months of 2020, the BoT statement said.