Thai Sept factory output falls 2.75%, smaller drop than forecast

BANGKOK, Oct 28 (Reuters) - Thailand’s manufacturing production index (MPI) dropped a smaller-than-expected 2.75% in September from a year earlier due mainly to lower production of cars, petroleum and sugar amid the coronavirus pandemic, the industry ministry said on Wednesday.

That compares with a forecast for a decline of 4.71% in a Reuters poll, and against August’s revised contraction of 9.05%.

Capacity utilisation in September was 63.07% after August’s revised 60.86%.

The ministry has forecast the MPI index will fall by 8%-9% this year.

Industrial goods account for 80% of total exports, a key driver of Thai growth.

Reporting by Kitiphong Thaichareon Writing by Orathai Sriring; Editing by Martin Petty