|Population||69 million (2017)|
|GDP at PPP (current international dollars)||1.2 trillion (2017)|
|GDP per capita at PPP (current international dollars)||17,871 (2017)|
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With well-developed agro-industries and a highly competitive agriculture export program, Thailand has been a powerful promoter of subregional agricultural trade. Thailand has developed world renowned agriculture products, including Jasmine rice, and has established the capacity to use agriculture to decrease rural poverty and drive economic growth. The country is working to increase private sector participation in agriculture, and is cooperating with GMS partners in defending against cross-border disease, and building climate resilience.
Thailand is working with its GMS partners to mitigate global warming and lower carbon emissions throughout the subregion. This includes sharing information and working together on developing renewable energy, clean fuels, energy efficiency and conservation. Thailand has a policy of working with its GMS partners to develop local energy sources, such as biomass, solar, and wind energy that reduce the dependence on fossil fuels.
With abundant water, forest, fish, and wildlife resources, Thailand is improving water security, decreasing forest cover loss, and managing solid and hazardous waste within its borders and throughout the subregion. Thailand has decentralized management of the environment to local communities, and has partnered with the private sector to enhance and protect the environment. Thailand is home to the GMS Environmental Operations Center, which coordinates environmental initiatives for the subregion.
Thailand works with its GMS partners to maintain a wide range of human resource development activities. These include skills development and the mutual recognition of vocation skills. The country is also combating human trafficking, and has worked to decrease the cross-border transmission of disease.
As an active partner in subregional telecommunications programs, Thailand is developing cross-border connections under the GMS Information Superhighway Network. Thailand is also working with its GMS partners to develop information and communication technology for rural applications.
Thailand is one of the world’s top tourist destinations, and is seen as a gateway for promoting GMS as a single destination for global travelers. The country’s top destinations include Bangkok, Chiang Mai, and seaside resorts in Pattaya and Phuket. The government is working to encourage sustainable tourism that highlights cultural identity, and promotes the conservation of nature and the environment.
As an active member of the GMS Business Forum, Thailand is promoting private sector investment in the subregion, and is encouraging Thai companies to trade with neighboring countries. Thailand is working with its GMS partners to improve trade by easing the flow of goods and services across borders. It is coordinating with subregional partners on customs procedures; inspection and quarantine measures, and trade logistics.
Thailand’s well-developed transport system is an important part of the GMS economic corridors, which focus investment and development on vital highway systems. Thailand has been a driver of economic growth on the North-South Economic Corridor (Kunming-Bangkok Road); the East-West Economic Corridor; and the Southern Economic Corridor. Thailand has worked with its GMS partners to upgrade portions of these important economic corridors and encourage cross border investments aligned with subregional highways.
Thailand is spending 100 billion baht ($3 billion) in infrastructure to strengthen its position as a transport and trade hub along the economic corridors of the Greater Mekong Subregion.
The six countries of the Greater Mekong Subregion have agreed to extend the “early harvest” implementation of their Cross-Border Transport Facilitation Agreement (CBTA) for 2 years.
The International Finance Corporation is partnering with Thailand-based Amata Corporation to develop sustainability projects for cities, towns, and industrial zones in the Greater Mekong Subregion. The projects will promote green growth and sustainable design practices.
The People’s Republic of China, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, and Thailand have agreed to build a railway bridge that will be part of a high-speed rail line connecting the three countries.
Thailand has adopted progressive policies that guarantee migrants’ access to many essential services regardless of legal status, including education and health care. However, barriers continue to hamper their use of these services in practice, says a United Nations report.
Pilot projects in the Greater Mekong Subregion are helping increase small farmers’ income by enhancing their access to the lucrative organic food market using a community-based certification system.
The Asian Development Bank has published economic statistics for analyzing cross-border production arrangements in Southeast Asian countries, including those in the Greater Mekong Subregion.