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Thailand (2001)

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Thailand 2001 year

Administrative divisions 76 provinces (changwat, singular and plural); Amnat Charoen, Ang Thong, Buriram, Chachoengsao, Chai Nat, Chaiyaphum, Chanthaburi, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Chon Buri, Chumphon, Kalasin, Kamphaeng Phet, Kanchanaburi, Khon Kaen, Krabi, Krung Thep Mahanakhon (Bangkok), Lampang, Lamphun, Loei, Lop Buri, Mae Hong Son, Maha Sarakham, Mukdahan, Nakhon Nayok, Nakhon Pathom, Nakhon Phanom, Nakhon Ratchasima, Nakhon Sawan, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Nan, Narathiwat, Nong Bua Lamphu, Nong Khai, Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Pattani, Phangnga, Phatthalung, Phayao, Phetchabun, Phetchaburi, Phichit, Phitsanulok, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Phrae, Phuket, Prachin Buri, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Ranong, Ratchaburi, Rayong, Roi Et, Sa Kaeo, Sakon Nakhon, Samut Prakan, Samut Sakhon, Samut Songkhram, Sara Buri, Satun, Sing Buri, Sisaket, Songkhla, Sukhothai, Suphan Buri, Surat Thani, Surin, Tak, Trang, Trat, Ubon Ratchathani, Udon Thani, Uthai Thani, Uttaradit, Yala, Yasothon
Age structure 0-14 years:
23.43% (male 7,380,273; female 7,099,506)

15-64 years:
69.95% (male 21,304,051; female 21,921,383)

65 years and over:
6.62% (male 1,796,325; female 2,296,213) (2001 est.)
Agriculture - products rice, cassava (tapioca), rubber, corn, sugarcane, coconuts, soybeans
Airports 110 (2000 est.)
Airports - with paved runways total:

over 3,047 m:

2,438 to 3,047 m:

1,524 to 2,437 m:

914 to 1,523 m:

under 914 m:
4 (2000 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways total:

1,524 to 2,437 m:

914 to 1,523 m:

under 914 m:
34 (2000 est.)
Area total:
514,000 sq km

511,770 sq km

2,230 sq km
Area - comparative slightly more than twice the size of Wyoming
Background A unified Thai kingdom was established in the mid-14th century; it was known as Siam until 1939. Thailand is the only southeast Asian country never to have been taken over by a European power. A bloodless revolution in 1932 led to a constitutional monarchy. In alliance with Japan during World War II, Thailand became a US ally following the conflict.
Birth rate 16.63 births/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Budget revenues:
$19 billion

$21 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2000 est.)
Capital Bangkok
Climate tropical; rainy, warm, cloudy southwest monsoon (mid-May to September); dry, cool northeast monsoon (November to mid-March); southern isthmus always hot and humid
Coastline 3,219 km
Constitution new constitution signed by King PHUMIPHON on 11 October 1997
Country name conventional long form:
Kingdom of Thailand

conventional short form:

Currency baht (THB)
Death rate 7.54 deaths/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Debt - external $90 billion (2000 est.)
Diplomatic representation from the US chief of mission:
Ambassador Richard E. HECKLINGER

120/22 Wireless Road, Bangkok

mailing address:
APO AP 96546

[66] (2) 205-4000

[66] (2) 254-1171

consulate(s) general:
Chiang Mai
Diplomatic representation in the US chief of mission:
Ambassador TEJ Bunnag

1024 Wisconsin Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20007

[1] (202) 944-3600

[1] (202) 944-3611

consulate(s) general:
Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York
Disputes - international parts of the border with Laos are indefinite; parts of border with Cambodia are indefinite; sporadic border hostilities with Burma over border alignment and ethnic Shan rebels operating in cross-border region
Economic aid - recipient $131.5 million (1998 est.)
Economy - overview After enjoying the world's highest growth rate from 1985 to 1995 - averaging almost 9% annually - increased speculative pressure on Thailand's currency in 1997 led to a crisis that uncovered financial sector weaknesses and forced the government to float the baht. Long pegged at 25 to the dollar, the baht reached its lowest point of 56 to the dollar in January 1998 and the economy contracted by 10.2% that same year. Thailand entered a recovery stage in 1999, expanding 4.2% and grew about the same amount in 2000, largely due to strong exports - which increased about 20% in 2000. An ailing financial sector and the slow pace of corporate debt restructuring, combined with a softening of global demand, is likely to slow growth in 2001.
Electricity - consumption 83.991 billion kWh (1999)
Electricity - exports 200 million kWh (1999)
Electricity - imports 1.02 billion kWh (1999)
Electricity - production 89.431 billion kWh (1999)
Electricity - production by source fossil fuel:



5.02% (1999)
Elevation extremes lowest point:
Gulf of Thailand 0 m

highest point:
Doi Inthanon 2,576 m
Environment - current issues air pollution from vehicle emissions; water pollution from organic and factory wastes; deforestation; soil erosion; wildlife populations threatened by illegal hunting
Environment - international agreements party to:
Climate Change, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified:
Biodiversity, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Law of the Sea
Ethnic groups Thai 75%, Chinese 14%, other 11%
Exchange rates baht per US dollar - 43.078 (January 2001), 40.112 (2000), 37.814 (1999), 41.359 (1998), 31.364 (1997), 25.343 (1996)
Executive branch chief of state:
King PHUMIPHON Adunyadet (since 9 June 1946)

head of government:
Prime Minister THAKSIN Chinnawat (since NA January 2001)

Council of Ministers

there is also a Privy Council

none; the monarch is hereditary; prime minister designated from among the members of the House of Representatives; following a national election for the House of Representatives, the leader of the party that can organize a majority coalition usually becomes prime minister
Exports 200 million kWh (1999)
Exports $68.2 billion (f.o.b., 2000 est.)
Exports - commodities computers and parts, textiles, integrated circuits, rice
Exports - partners US 22%, Japan 14%, Singapore 9%, Hong Kong 5%, Netherlands 4%, Malaysia 4%, UK 4% (1999)
Fiscal year 1 October - 30 September
Flag description five horizontal bands of red (top), white, blue (double width), white, and red
GDP purchasing power parity - $413 billion (2000 est.)
GDP - composition by sector agriculture:


47% (1999)
GDP - per capita purchasing power parity - $6,700 (2000 est.)
GDP - real growth rate 4.2% (2000 est.)
Geographic coordinates 15 00 N, 100 00 E
Geography - note controls only land route from Asia to Malaysia and Singapore
Heliports 2 (2000 est.)
Highways total:
64,600 km

62,985 km

1,615 km (1996)
Household income or consumption by percentage share lowest 10%:

highest 10%:
37.1% (1992)
Illicit drugs a minor producer of opium, heroin, and marijuana; illicit transit point for heroin en route to the international drug market from Burma and Laos; eradication efforts have reduced the area of cannabis cultivation and shifted some production to neighboring countries; opium poppy cultivation has been reduced by eradication efforts; also a drug money-laundering center; minor role in amphetamine production for regional consumption; increasing indigenous abuse of methamphetamine
Imports 1.02 billion kWh (1999)
Imports $61.8 billion (f.o.b., 2000 est.)
Imports - commodities capital goods, intermediate goods and raw materials, consumer goods, fuels
Imports - partners Japan 26%, US 14%, Singapore 6%, China 5%, Malaysia 5%, Taiwan 5% (1999)
Independence 1238 (traditional founding date; never colonized)
Industrial production growth rate 3% (2000 est.)
Industries tourism; textiles and garments, agricultural processing, beverages, tobacco, cement, light manufacturing, such as jewelry; electric appliances and components, computers and parts, integrated circuits, furniture, plastics; world's second-largest tungsten producer and third-largest tin producer
Infant mortality rate 30.49 deaths/1,000 live births (2001 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 2.1% (2000 est.)
International organization participation APEC, ARF, AsDB, ASEAN, BIS, CCC, CP, ESCAP, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarsat, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, NAM, OAS (observer), OIC (observer), OPCW, OSCE (partner), PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIKOM, UNITAR, UNMIBH, UNTAET, UNU, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
Internet Service Providers (ISPs) 15 (2000)
Irrigated land 44,000 sq km (1993 est.)
Judicial branch Supreme Court or Sandika (judges appointed by the monarch)
Labor force 32.6 million (1997 est.)
Labor force - by occupation agriculture 54%, industry 15%, services 31% (1996 est.)
Land boundaries total:
4,863 km

border countries:
Burma 1,800 km, Cambodia 803 km, Laos 1,754 km, Malaysia 506 km
Land use arable land:

permanent crops:

permanent pastures:

forests and woodland:

32% (1993 est.)
Languages Thai, English (secondary language of the elite), ethnic and regional dialects
Legal system based on civil law system, with influences of common law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Legislative branch bicameral National Assembly or Rathasapha consists of the Senate or Wuthisapha (200 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms) and the House of Representatives or Sapha Phuthaen Ratsadon (500 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)

Senate - last held 4 March, 29 April, 4 June, 9 July, and 22 July 2000 (next to be held NA March 2004); House of Representatives - last held 6 January 2001 (next to be held NA January 2005)

election results:
Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - NA; House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - TRT 248, DP 128, TNP 41, NAP 36, NDP 29, other 18
Life expectancy at birth total population:
68.86 years

65.64 years

72.24 years (2001 est.)
Literacy definition:
age 15 and over can read and write

total population:


91.6% (1995 est.)
Location Southeastern Asia, bordering the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand, southeast of Burma
Map references Southeast Asia
Maritime claims continental shelf:
200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation

exclusive economic zone:
200 NM

territorial sea:
12 NM
Merchant marine total:
294 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 1,845,972 GRT/2,923,914 DWT

ships by type:
bulk 36, cargo 133, chemical tanker 3, combination bulk 1, container 14, liquefied gas 20, multi-functional large-load carrier 3, passenger 1, petroleum tanker 61, refrigerated cargo 13, roll on/roll off 2, short-sea passenger 2, specialized tanker 5 (2000 est.)
Military branches Royal Thai Army, Royal Thai Navy (includes Royal Thai Marine Corps), Royal Thai Air Force, Paramilitary Forces
Military expenditures - dollar figure $1.775 billion (FY00)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP 1.4% (FY00)
Military manpower - availability males age 15-49:
17,717,268 (2001 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service males age 15-49:
10,646,818 (2001 est.)
Military manpower - military age 18 years of age
Military manpower - reaching military age annually males:
567,659 (2001 est.)
National holiday Birthday of King PHUMIPHON, 5 December (1927)
Nationality noun:
Thai (singular and plural)

Natural hazards land subsidence in Bangkok area resulting from the depletion of the water table; droughts
Natural resources tin, rubber, natural gas, tungsten, tantalum, timber, lead, fish, gypsum, lignite, fluorite, arable land
Net migration rate 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Pipelines petroleum products 67 km; natural gas 350 km
Political parties and leaders Democratic Party or DP (Prachathipat Party) [CHUAN Likphai]; Liberal Democratic Party or LDP (Seri Tham) [PHINIT Charusombat]; Mass Party or MP [CHALERM Yoobamrung, SOPHON Petchsavang]; National Development Party or NDP (Chat Phattana) [KORN Dabbaransi]; New Aspiration Party or NAP (Khwamwang Mai) [Gen. CHAWALIT Yongchaiyut]; Phalang Dharma Party or PDP (Phalang Tham) [CHAIWAT Sinsuwong]; Social Action Party or SAP (Kitsangkhom Party) [leader vacant]; Solidarity Party or SP (Ekkaphap Party) [CHAIYOT Sasomsap]; Thai Citizen's Party or TCP (Prachakon Thai) [SAMAK Sunthonwet]; Thai Nation Party or TNP (Chat Thai Party) [BANHAN Sinlapa-acha]; Thai Rak Thai Party or TRT [THAKSIN Chinnawat]
Political pressure groups and leaders NA
Population 61,797,751

estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2001 est.)
Population below poverty line 12.5% (1998 est.)
Population growth rate 0.91% (2001 est.)
Ports and harbors Bangkok, Laem Chabang, Pattani, Phuket, Sattahip, Si Racha, Songkhla
Radio broadcast stations AM 204, FM 334, shortwave 6 (1999)
Radios 13.96 million (1997)
Railways total:
3,940 km

narrow gauge:
3,940 km 1.000-m gauge (99 km double track)
Religions Buddhism 95%, Muslim 3.8%, Christianity 0.5%, Hinduism 0.1%, other 0.6% (1991)
Sex ratio at birth:
1.05 male(s)/female

under 15 years:
1.04 male(s)/female

15-64 years:
0.97 male(s)/female

65 years and over:
0.78 male(s)/female

total population:
0.97 male(s)/female (2001 est.)
Suffrage 18 years of age; universal and compulsory
Telephone system general assessment:
service to general public adequate, but investment in technological upgrades reduced by recession; bulk of service to government activities provided by multichannel cable and microwave radio relay network

microwave radio relay and multichannel cable; domestic satellite system being developed

satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (1 Indian Ocean and 1 Pacific Ocean)
Telephones - main lines in use 5.4 million (1998)
Telephones - mobile cellular 2.3 million (1998)
Television broadcast stations 5 (all in Bangkok; plus 131 repeaters) (1997)
Terrain central plain; Khorat Plateau in the east; mountains elsewhere
Total fertility rate 1.87 children born/woman (2001 est.)
Unemployment rate 3.7% (2000 est.)
Waterways 4,000 km

3,701 km are navigable throughout the year by boats with drafts up to 0.9 meters; numerous minor waterways serve shallow-draft native craft
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