The Thai economy in 1Q18 rose to a record 5-year high at 4.8 percent YoY, driven by booming export and tourism sectors. At the same time, housing spending began to show positive signs, picking up momentum from the previous quarter. Additionally, agricultural production has dramatically increased, becoming a major driver for GDP growth in 1Q18.
Thailand's GDP growth in 1Q18 is likely to register the highest rate of 2018 while the quarterly expansion rate in the remainder of the year should be higher than 4.0 percent YoY. The GDP rise is largely propelled by exports and tourist receipts while domestic spending, including household spending and private investment, has gradually increased. KResearch estimates that Thailand's GDP growth in 2018 may approach the upper end of our economic forecast range of 3.5-4.5 percent (median at 4.0 percent).