The massive 9.0 magnitude earthquake and following deadly tsunami on March 11 has had catastrophic consequences for Japan, with major loss of life and property. Businesses have sustained enormous losses. Most of the world's major electronic component plants located in the quake-ravaged zone have seen their production crippled, while some less-affected factories are still far from resuming their full potential.
For impact on the Thai electronic and electrical (E&E) industry in 2011, the calamity in Japan is expected to be only a short-term blow on Thai exports of this product category due to slow demand from the Japanese market and a disruption in component supplies from Japan for production here. Overall, however, the industry will still likely experience positive growth. KASIKORN RESEARCH CENTER (KResearch) projects that E&E exports in 2011 may total around USD57,250-58,650 million, up 7.0-10.0 percent YoY, but down from the 25.7 percent growth achieved in 2010. Of this, around USD22,635-USD23,050 million would come from electrical industry. This would represent 10.0-12.0 percent growth YoY, compared to the 32.4 percent growth in 2010. Meanwhile, the export value from electronic industry may stand at USD34,620-USD35,600 million, an increase of 5.0-8.0 percent YoY, compared to the 21.9-percent growth in 2010. This growth may be attributable to larger shipments to Japan expected in 2H11, expanded production by multi-national companies with plants here, as well as greater exports to new markets.