The Economic Consequences of Globalization on Thailand.

AuthorSangkaew, Piyapong

The Economic Consequences of Globalization on Thailand, by Juthathip Jongwanich. Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge, 2022. Pp. 288.

This book examines the impact of globalization on Thailand, which began liberalizing its economy in the 1960s. During that period, tariffs were reduced while non-tariff barriers were used to protect sensitive products, especially agricultural goods. In Thailand, comprehensive tariff reduction policies were implemented stringently between 1995 and 1997, and again in 2003. As such, the decline in average tariff can be observed from 1995 onwards. Even though empirical studies from other developing countries on the impact of liberalization on raising Total Factor Productivity (TFP) and altering structural employment in favour of skilled labour are less conclusive, this book provides a clear answer to how globalization has affected TFP and employment in the Thai manufacturing sector.

The volume follows a sequential structure. Chapter 1 provides a useful liberalization timeline of the country. Thailand began with an import substitution policy in the 1960s, before switching to export promotion over the next two decades. Further liberalization measures incentivized many multinational enterprises (MNEs) to participate in the country's manufacturing sector, resulting in an increase in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) inflow, and improved production technology and management knowledge-which ultimately contributed to greater efficiency and value-addition in global value chains (GVCs). This book also reveals the intricacies of the Thai trading strategy in which input tariff exemptions were used to promote the re-exporting industries. In addition, the country eased export procedures by reducing bureaucratic processes, which further boosted the FDI inflow. The liberalization-induced new technology of production and transferred management know-how helped raise employment in the manufacturing sector and assisted the development of backward linkage industries. The author also mentions that the level of protection put in place for the secondary sector was based on the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system rather than the Network Resource Planner (NRP) approach.

Besides providing a meticulous explanation of the trade policy regime in Thailand, this publication also comprehensively covers definitions of technical terms relating to international trade regulations in both tariff and non-tariff measures. Chapter 2 provides useful insights...

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