Regional and urbanisation policy in Thailand
This research is focused on the issue of urban development within the context of regional planning in Thailand. The study's main question is how national policy should attempt to shape the emerging urbanisation pattern in Thailand. In the past the country's development plans have emphasised industrialisation which has led to an acceleration in the growth of Bangkok, creating a dual economy and widening regional disparities. The Government's past efforts to decentralise economic activity have been relatively ineffective. This thesis considers a new approach, using the public service sector as the leading economic base for the development of a selected regional centre, Chonburi, in the Eastern Seaboard Sub-region. The study's analysis indicates that it is economically and administratively feasible to implement a Government work dispersal scheme. The analysis also indicates the necessity of controlling the large regional leakages which would otherwise reduce the regional multiplier effects. Overall, the study confirms that a growth pole approach can be initiated by public employment relocation and suggests that there is a viable alternative to nearly all of Thailand's growth being concentrated in Bangkok. However, the study also confirms that if private investment in the growth pole is to be achieved, this approach must be supplemented by long term public investment commitments and subtle co-ordination of private and public programming and planning measures.