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By Chris Dixon

The Thai economic climate examines the origins and results of the Thai economy's speeded up development because the mid-1980s. The authors position a specific emphasis at the historic improvement and modern financial constitution that has a tendency to set Thailand except different constructing nations.

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These developments have also to be seen in the context of the expansion of trade in the region as a whole from the late eighteenth century onwards. Production for the international market appears to have expanded rapidly from the late eighteenth century (Hong Lysa, 1984; Nidhi Aeusrivongse, 1982:75; Evers, 1987:762–3; Sarasin Viraphol, 1977:177). Indeed, Nidhi Aeusrivongse (1982:75) goes as far as to suggest that ‘the production of agricultural goods for export can be regarded as the basis of the economy.

However, by the last years of the nineteenth century when annexation by the British was politically feasible, the strength of Imperial economic control over Thailand was such that it was probably unnecessary. Reform and modernisation Between 1892 and the 1920s the pace of change was remarkably rapid. Tej Bunnag summarised the changes: Siam in 1925 was vastly different from the Siam of 1868. From a loose conglomeration of states and provinces without clear boundaries, she became a smaller and more compact state with clearly defined frontiers.

However, the colonial annexations and related boundaries have, as elsewhere in the region, created long-term problems of separating previously closely related groups of peoples and isolated minority communities in many border areas. The response of the Thai rulers to the economic and political pressures of the colonial powers appears to have been a remarkably passive one. After 1855 Thai policy was characterised by deference to the demands made by the British and the French. However, as Tate has stressed, this: was also a policy of accommodation to the ineluctable conditions of the times and did not represent a sell out to foreign interests.

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