Thailand’s Soaring Inflation Rate Getting Worse

Thailand is one of the ASEAN countries that is now enduring the soaring inflation rate of basic commodities, including pork, fuel, and more.
Thailand is one of the ASEAN countries that is now enduring the soaring inflation rate of basic commodities, including pork, fuel, and more.

Prices of basic commodities in Thailand started increasing at the onset of 2022. The soaring inflation rate adversely impacts the prices of fuel, noodles. Most people can no longer afford to buy what they need because of a meager budget, not to mention the climbing prices of food and petrol.

Inflation Rate Affects Everyone’s Cost of Living

The soaring inflation rate in the staples and pork industry is making headlines in Thailand. Prices of meat, eggs, and dairy products have been going up. The current situation affects everyone’s cost of living in the country.

Thai PM Prayut Chan-o-cha called on both the Ministry of Commerce and the Ministry of Energy to have urgent dialogues. They will need to address the price freeze with food and essential producers. They will need other tools to contain the soaring inflation rate and rising prices of basic commodities.

Toll fees and boat fees also increase as Deputy PM Supattanapong Punmeechaow asks the citizens to “remain positive” during the price increase, saying that “it’s temporary.” The Thai government is also having a conversation with the country’s leading noodle producer, Thai President Foods, regarding probable price control.

“The state is trying to control the price as much as possible, but it also depends on the market mechanism,” said Deputy PM Supattanapong Punmeechaow.

Crocodile Meat As Pork Substitute

People buy crocodile meat instead because of the towering cost of pork sold at more than 200 baht per kilogram. Crocodile farms offer their produce at 70 baht only per kilogram.

Thai buys crocodile meat as a substitute for pork. (Rudolph. A.Furtado/WikimediaCommons)

However, the Thai government holds that the present pork price premiums are because of the disputed African Swine Fever. The disease caused the shortage of pork supply in the country.

The first case of the said disease started on three pigs bought for companionship only. These animals showed signs of fever stupor and labor breathing in November last year. All of the infected animals died in December.

The Thai cabinet turned to the Bank of Thailand about regulating the increasing inflation rate. The National Economic and Social Development Council foresees that the country’s inflation this year is 1 to 3% much lower in other world economies.

Oil Price Hike Adds to Soaring Inflation Rate Woes

Oil has been on its fourth straight weekly gain. So far, it’s the longest winning succession since October of last year. It’s a sign of a tightening market as worldwide consumption ensures the effect of the Omicron virus variant.

“The picture for oil is getting better because people are looking past the omicron variant and looking to reopening and a rebound in activity, much like we saw coming out of August,” said Rob Haworth, senior investment strategist at U.S. Bank Wealth Management.

Oil prices also find support from physical markets. Real barrels have been bought and sold eventually as supplies transfer at healthy premiums. Furthermore, there’s global strength seen in the diesel sector.

The Thai government is discussing the issue with PTT, the main oil and gas company, to offer discounts on LPG. It will apply to food shops and street vendors. Additionally, they seek to control the natural gas’ retail price for cars. Thai taxis use LPG to run their vehicles.

On the other hand, crude recovered most of its losses late in 2021, driven by the Omicron variant. Moreover, it includes the releases from national oil reserves by the White House.

Image Source: Doug Beckers/Flickr