Thailand’s unemployment rate dropped to 1.05 percent in the first quarter of this year from 1.15 percent in the previous quarter, with a strong recovery in its vital tourism industry, official data showed on Monday.
This marked the lowest rate in three years as the Southeast Asian country’s travel sector, a key source of employment, continued to pick up pace, according to the National Economic and Social Development Council (NESDC).
The number of people in the labor force amounted to 39.6 million in the first quarter, representing a 2.4 percent year-on-year increase, mainly due to growth in both the agricultural and non-agricultural sectors, the NESDC said in a report.
The NESDC attributed the improved labor situation to an ongoing economic recovery and the continuous growth of the tourism industry, despite a slight decline in employment within the manufacturing sector.
According to the report, working hours in the private sector increased 1.5 percent year on year, while the overall wage average rose 1.3 percent compared to a year earlier, indicating higher purchasing power.
The agency noted that the annual need for information-technology-related jobs ranges from 20,000 to 30,000. However, there are not enough graduates in this field to meet the demand.
The report also indicated that extreme weather due to climate change has a potential impact on farm labor income and employment, as well as cultivation and agricultural output.