BANGKOK, Dec 14 (Reuters) - The Bank of Thailand has raised its GDP growth forecasts slightly for this year and next due to the healthy outlook for domestic consumption and investment, Governor Prasarn Trairatvorakul said.
For 2012 it is now forecasting 5.8 percent rather than 5.7 percent and for 2013 it expects 4.7 percent rather than 4.6 percent.
'The driver will be domestic demand,' Prasarn told a seminar on Thursday evening.
It had signalled the modest increase on Wednesday in minutes of its November monetary policy meeting, when it said consumption and investment would be supported by favourable household incomes, good employment prospects, strong consumer confidence and easy financial conditions.
The global economic slowdown hit Thai exports this year, Prasarn said. That weakness would continue into the fourth quarter and 2012 export growth would probably fall short even of the central bank's latest 4.4 percent target, he said.
He expected the export sector to recover from the first half of next year.
(Reporting by Boontiwa Wichakul; Writing by Viparat Jantraprap; Editing by Alan Raybould) Keywords: THAILAND ECONOMY/
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