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INSIDE THAILAND
Nakhon Phanom Special Economic Zone

19 April 2016

The Government gives high priority to the development of special economic zones to spread development to various part of the country and create economic connectivity with neighboring countries. Nakhon Phanom in the Northeast is among the 10 provinces where special economic zones will be set up.
 
Other provinces include Tak, Mukdahan, Sa Kaeo, Songkhla, Trat, Chiang Rai, Kanchanaburi, Nong Khai, and Narathiwat.
 
Nakhon Phanom borders the Mekong River and is located opposite the Lao Peoples Democratic Republic. It was named the happiest province in Thailand, according to a survey, conducted by the National Statistical Office in 2012. In this province, members of Thai, Lao, and Vietnamese ethnic groups have lived together in harmony for hundreds of years.
 
The slogan of Nakhon Phanom is that it is a livable city and a gateway to ASEAN and southern and eastern China. The Nakhon Phanom Special Economic Zone covers an area of 774.79 square kilometers in two districts: Mueang Nakhon Phanom and Tha Uthen.
 
This province has great potential for the development of the special economic zone. It is a frontline state, linking with Lao PDR and Vietnam through the "new trade lane along the R12 route. The new trade lane begins at the Third Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge in Nakhon Phanom and continues to Thakhek and Khammouane in Laos and then to Ha Tinh province in Vietnam. A route from Ha Tinh also leads to Hanoi and China.
 
In terms of economic growth, border trade in Nakhon Phanom is on the increase each year, especially after the opening of the Third Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge in 2013. Major economic crops in this province include rice, natural rubber, pineapple, tapioca, and tobacco. There are also several water sources suitable for fish farming.
 
The province has processing plants to produce beef, chicken, and pork for local consumption and export. Local residents earn a middle-range income, while family stability is high. They also lead their lives simply and peacefully.
 
In preparation for the establishment of the special economic zone, Nakhon Phanom is planning to set up a "One Stop Service Center to promote investment and a logistics center to facilitate trade between Thailand and Laos, Vietnam, and southern China. A Border Economic and Trade Promotion Center will also be set up in the Third Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge vicinity, and a study is being conducted on the establishment of a border transport center.
 
During his recent visit to Nakhon Phanom, Deputy Education Minister General Surachet Chaiwong explained guidelines for integrated education management to local education administrators. He said that the education management must be in line with the Special Economic Zone and prepare for the ASEAN Community, as well.
 
Foreign Office, The Government Public Relations Department, Office of the Prime Minister
9 Rama VI Road, Bangkok 10400, Thailand

Tel: (+66-2) 618-2323 ext. 1700, 1707
Fax : (+66-2) 618-2358 E-mail : prforeign@gmail.com  
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