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World's most-valuable airport operator is now in Thailand

[BANGKOK] After strong international tourist arrivals in 2017, Airports of Thailand surpassed Spain's Aena as the world's most-valuable airport services company.

Powered by a 75 per cent gain since May 1, the operator of Thailand's main international airports also passed the one trillion baht (S$41.05 billion) market capitalisation mark, joining only state-controlled energy company PTT above that milestone. Shares of Airports of Thailand jumped 9.2 per cent in December - rallying for a 10th consecutive month - as government data showed international tourists in November jumped 23 per cent.

The stock's surge was by far the best performer in Bloomberg's Asia-Pacific Infrastructure Top Peers gauge, with Shanghai International Airport a distant second at 29 per cent in the same period. Airports of Thailand gained 4.4 per cent in the first two trading sessions of 2018.

Even so, analysts aren't convinced: their consensus forecast suggests share may fall 12 per cent over the next 12 months. The stock has 14 buy recommendations, 10 hold and eight sell ratings.

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