Thailand’s Border Special Economic Zones and the Reconfiguration of Cross-Border Social, Labour and Commercial Relations


This is the abstract (only 95 words for a 9,000 word paper) for the presentation at the InterAsian event at Seoul National University (


Border special economic zones have been announced as the next step of developing the Thai economy and making qualitative, structural changes to it. Yet it is not clear how such zones differ from the currently employed industrial estates, which have done sterling service in fueling rapid economic growth for several decades and continue to be important elements in the economy. This paper explains the issues behind this policy and the ways in which estate might hope to become a zone.

Keywords: border, industrial estate, middle income trap, special economic zone, Thailand


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