Thailand's House of Representatives on Wednesday approved in principle a 3.1 trillion baht (about 99.7 billion US dollars) budget bill for the 2022 fiscal year.
Following a three-day debate, government MPs cast 269 votes against 201 votes cast by opposition MPs to pass the first reading of the 2022 budget bill.
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said during the House meeting that the budget for 2022 fiscal year starting October 1 will help Thailand overcome the economic challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and further drive growth, reports Xinhua.
Prayut forecast Thailand's economy will grow 2.5 to 3.5 per cent throughout this year largely due to uptrends in economic recovery, increased volumes in world trading businesses, and the effective distribution of COVID-19 vaccines in the world's major economic countries.
He also predicted the Thai economy will grow 4.0 to 5.0 per cent in 2022, given such favorable economic factors and a return of foreign tourists.
The budget bill is required to pass another two rounds of reading in the parliament which are expected to be conducted in August.