In Thailand ,Operating margins of Retailers are the highest among the western world liested companys ( check balance of bigC,Makro compare to Ahold,tesco uk,Carefour).
They can increase margin y over y , bcs lack of competition and stupid consumers.
The argument of tax and transport is minor
I importetd a coffeemaschine from Italy, get refunded 20% VAT payed in Thailand &% vat and importtax 15% .was total about 25%... so at the end product price was same like in europe ( transport was 6% of good and i shippeed 1 , if shipp wholesale costs would be less than 1 %)..so why the coffeemaschine same brand cost here nearly double ??? ( my price tot 55k ans shop here 99k?? i bought one from a reatiler in IT him makes already profit,and wholebuyers buy sure cheaper than me when they order factory direct)
Apples from Australia ( last 3 yrs thb increase value about 30% compare to AUD)
why product price go up
Jazz apples pack when startet sale at bigc was 59thb , than 69 with sign reduced from 79, than 79 reduced from 89 ,and so on..until 109 thb
Reason.. an automated sales programm running,as long sales not drop, they increase margin on product further,and as long thais buy everything ( cant remember price bfr,cant calculate per KG or per ltr ).....as long a company would further increase margin
behind the bahtstrenght is a simple econ. reason
1 low goverment dept and more growth compare to major countrys
2.CAPITAL inflow , the biggest argument , funds still see thailand as save heaven compare to rest in south east asia. They like prayut, bcs him strong. They , institunional investors ,dont care about the rest
.. if you see capital inflow negative..the baht would be quick in a heavy downtrend.........but until now its not around the corner...........
in todays world, not important a recession or less tourists ..international capital is the mover for the currency, as long its a free trade currency like the THB.. to much cheap money with the big boys made by centralbanks worldwide