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Thailand's industrial confidence picks up in June

BANGKOK, July 24 (Xinhua) -- Thailand's industrial confidence increased for the first time in three months in June due to ongoing domestic demand growth, driven by a recovery in private consumption and tourism, data showed on Monday.

The Thailand Industry Sentiment Index (TISI) rose to 94.1 last month from 92.5 in May, as all components of the index improved, including purchase orders, sales, production volume, operation costs, and turnover, according to the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI).

Despite the improvements seen in June, entrepreneurs expressed concerns about high household debt, which affects domestic purchasing power, as well as sluggish exports due to weak global demand, and geopolitical conflicts impacting energy and commodity prices, the FTI said in a statement.

The three-month expected TISI plunged to a five-month low in June at 102.1, down from 104.3 a month earlier, as entrepreneurs worried about the domestic political situation and uncertainty over the formation of a new government, the statement said.

The group urged the government to increase the number of inbound flights, enhance the tourist transport experience with a focus on security, and organize events for entrepreneurs to sell tourism-related products to overseas visitors, FTI Chairman Kriengkrai Thiennukul told a news conference.

He also highlighted the need to manage agricultural and industrial water supplies during the El Nino-related drought, which is expected to have a prolonged impact.

The reading was based on a survey of 1,361 respondents from 45 industry groups under the FTI, it said in the statement.