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Bank of Thailand Head Says Virus Fight May Need $30 Billion More

  • BOT chief proposes government raise borrowing to fund stimulus
  • Pandemic impact seen to be greater than estimated: Sethaput
Sethaput Suthiwartnarueput

Sethaput Suthiwartnarueput

Photographer: Nicolas Axelrod/Bloomberg

Thailand’s central bank governor called for an additional 1 trillion baht ($30 billion) in government spending to counter coronavirus, saying the blow to the economy from the pandemic is greater than from the Asian financial crisis in 1997.

The government can fund additional spending by borrowing more, Bank of Thailand Governor Sethaput Suthiwartnarueput said Monday at a briefing in Bangkok. Even if public debt tops 70% of gross domestic product by 2024, that would be manageable given high domestic liquidity, low borrowing costs and the country’s current-account surplus, he said.