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335181

UPDATE 2-Thai Sept exports top forecast but Chinese shipments fall

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Sept exports +7.8% y/y vs +4.2% in Reuters poll

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Sept imports +15.6% y/y vs +20.0% in poll

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Sept trade deficit $853 mln vs $2.9 bln deficit in poll

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Minister sees exports up 8% this year

(Adds detail, ministers' comments)

BANGKOK, Oct 26 (Reuters) - Thailand's exports rose more than expected in September, helped by increased global activity, an improved supply of components and a weak baht currency , but exports to China continued to fall, the commerce ministry said on Wednesday.

Exports, a key driver of Thai growth, rose 7.8% in September from a year earlier, compared with a forecast rise of 4.20% year-on-year in a Reuters poll, and against August's 7.5% increase.

In the first nine months of 2022, exports rose 10.6% from the same period a year ago, the ministry said in a statement.

Full-year export growth should reach 8% this year, double the ministry's target, Commerce Minister Jurin Laksanawisit told a news conference.

"Export growth should still be good in October-December, remaining a key driver of the economy," he said.

The baht, which is hovering around a 16-year low against the dollar, should help rice exports exceed the ministry's target of 7 million tonnes this year, he added.

In September, exports of farm and agro-industrial products rose 1.8% year on year, while key industrial goods increased 9.4%, the ministry said.

Among key markets, shipments to the United States jumped 26.2% from a year earlier and those to Southeast Asia rose 16.1% Shipments to China slipped 13.2% year on year.

Imports rose 15.6% in September from a year earlier, less than a forecast 20.0% jump. Thailand posted a trade deficit of $853 million in September, versus a forecast deficit of $2.9 billion. (Reporting by Satawasin Staporncharnchai and Orathai Sriring; Editing by Martin Petty and Ed Davies)

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