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Thailand’s Q1/2023 Unemployment Rate Returns to Normal as Workers Enjoy Higher Pay After Economic Recovery

The National Economic and Social Development Council (NESDB) has released its findings on the social conditions in Thailand for the first quarter of 2023, revealing positive trends in the labor market. The unemployment rate has improved and returned to a normal level of 1.05%, indicating a recovering economy. Moreover, workers are experiencing increased wages as a result of the economic rebound.

During the fourth quarter of 2022, household debt as a percentage of GDP stood at 86.9%, showing a slower growth rate. In light of this, the NESDB has advised the new government to carefully consider adjusting wage policies and welfare programs, suggesting a targeted approach.

The Secretary-General of the NESDB announced that the labor situation in Thailand has improved in comparison to the same period last year. Employment opportunities have expanded both within and outside the agricultural sector, contributing to a total of 39.6 million employed individuals, representing a 2.4% increase from the previous year. The agricultural sector witnessed a growth rate of 1.6% due to an expansion in plantation areas. Additionally, the non-farm sector experienced a 2.7% growth, driven by employment opportunities in wholesale and retail trade, hotels, and restaurants, which have improved in tandem with the economic recovery. The manufacturing sector also saw a slight expansion in employment.

Working hours have increased across the board, with overall working hours reaching 41.4 and private working hours averaging at 44.3. The number of workers engaged in overtime has risen to over 6.4 million, indicating a 12.4% increase. Meanwhile, the number of quasi-unemployed individuals has decreased by 11.3%. These positive developments have contributed to the continuous improvement of the unemployment rate, which now stands at 1.05% with approximately 420,000 unemployed individuals.

The NESDB’s report highlights the positive progress in Thailand’s labor market during the first quarter of 2023. With the unemployment rate returning to normal and workers benefiting from increased wages, the economy is showing signs of recovery. These trends provide a favorable outlook for Thailand’s social and economic well-being in the coming months.

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