Eastern Economic Corridor, Thailand

The Eastern Economic Corridor is one of the flagship development projects of the Thai government. It will include new industrial areas, the expansion of ports and airports, and new railway connections.


Some large infrastructure projects in the Eastern Economic Corridor are opposed by local communities, while a number have high costs and may not be able to proceed at the desired pace, researchers at the Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI)  warned in October 2017. (6).            

See more...
Basic Data
NameEastern Economic Corridor, Thailand
ProvinceChachoengsao, Chonburi and Rayong Provinces
Accuracy of LocationLOW country/state level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Infrastructure and Built Environment
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Transport infrastructure networks (roads, railways, hydroways, canals and pipelines)
Specific CommoditiesManufactured Products
Chemical products
Project Details and Actors
Project DetailsAccording to the government, the GDP of this area represents 20 percent of the country’s total GDP

The EEC project will focus on two types of industries:

1) the First S-Curve industries, or sectors in which Thailand already has a consolidated industry and that the government wants to modernize. The 5 targeted industries are next-generation automotive, smart electronics, affluent medical and wellness tourism, agriculture and biotechnology, and food for the future; and

2) the New S-Curve or new sectors that the government wants to target: robotics, aviation and logistics, biofuels and biochemicals, digital, and medical hub.

Some of the budgets planned by the government are [7]:

U-Tapao international airport, 200,000 million baht ($5.7 Bill USD)

Map Ta Phut port, 10,150 million baht ($0.3 Bill USD)

Laem Chabang port, 88,000 million baht ($2.5 Bill USD)

New Cities / Hospitals, 400,000 million baht ($11.5 Bill USD),

Tourism, 200,000 million baht ($5.7 Bill USD),

Industry, 500,000 million baht ($14 Bill USD),

Motorway, 35,300 million baht ($1 Bill USD),

Dual-track railway 64,300 million baht ($1.8 Bill USD)

High-speed train, 158,000 million baht ($4.5 Bill USD)

From the private sector, the country’s largest petrochemical company, PTT Global Chemical (PTTGC.BK) announced a $985 million olefins plant in the EEC in January 2018. Top industrial estate developer, Amata Corporation Pcl (AMATA.BK) increased its sales target last year in the EEC, anticipating more investors. Amata also partnered with Swedish Saab AB (SAABb.ST) to study the development of an aerospace city. The industrial east is already home to foreign auto manufacturers such as Toyota (7203.T), Honda (7267.T) and Ford (F.N), that gave Thailand the moniker, “Detroit of the East”, and also houses petrochemical and electronic companies. (5).
Project Area (in hectares)1,300,000
Level of Investment (in USD)43,000,000,000
Type of PopulationSemi-urban
Start Date28/06/2016
Company Names or State EnterprisesPTT Global Chemical (PTTGC.BK) from Thailand
Toyota Tsusho Corporation (Toyota) from Japan
Amata Corporation Pcl (AMATA.BK) from Thailand
Ford Motor Company from United States of America
Relevant government actorsBoard of Investment, Ministry of Industry, National Council for Peace and Order, Office of the National Economic and Social Development Board
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersEastern People's Network

Special Economic Zone Watch Network
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)MEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)
When did the mobilization beginPREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups MobilizingLocal ejos
Local scientists/professionals
Forms of MobilizationCommunity-based participative research (popular epidemiology studies, etc..)
Development of a network/collective action
Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism
Objections to the EIA
Public campaigns
Street protest/marches
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Air pollution, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality
Potential: Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover, Large-scale disturbance of hydro and geological systems
Socio-economic ImpactsPotential: Displacement, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Project StatusPlanned (decision to go ahead eg EIA undertaken, etc)
Do you consider this as a success?No
Why? Explain briefly.The project is going ahead and proceeding quickly. The government has opened bidding processes for several of the infrastructure projects and is looking for investors.
Sources and Materials

[4] Environmental fears as EEC plans rushed, The Nation, February 26, 2018
[click to view]

[1] Environmental fears as EEC plans rushed. The Nation. February 26, 2018
[click to view]

[2] Thailand’s EEC to Be Linked with China’s One Belt, One Road Initiative. The Government's Public Relations Department. May 15, 2017
[click to view]

[3] Academic fears concession will lead to land grab in Eastern Economic Corridor. The Nation. May 02, 2017
[click to view]

Media Links

(5) Reuters, 8 Febr. 2018, Thailand approves law for $45 billion Eastern Economic Corridor
[click to view]

(6) Govt faces more EEC challenges than was thought, forum hears. Economy October 11, 2017. By WICHIT CHAITRONG. THE NATION
[click to view]

Other Documents

[click to view]

Other CommentsThis is the government's optimistic view: "Chachoengsao, Chonburi and Rayong Provinces have been designated for the development of the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC), a pilot project for the economic development of Thailand’s Eastern Seaboard. Over the past 30 years, these three provinces have been developed to support the fast growing industries. It was the “eras of industrial revolution”. In 1987, Map Ta Phut industrial estate was established and it was the beginning of the development of Thai heavy industry, such as petrochemical, auto and electronics industries. These eras are also called Thailand 3.0. Today, Thailand is ready to move forward to the era of Thailand 4.0. The EEC area covers over 13,000 Km2. The government has launched measures to support and accelerate the economic growth in the EEC, for instance, measures to develop public utilities, transportation systems, logistics, human resources, and investor’s facilitation in the form of One-Stop Service Center. In the future, the EEC will grow into a modern metropolitan, a hub of trade and investment, a center for regional transportation and logistics, a significant source for human resources, a tourist attraction and most importantly, the most modern Gateway to Asia". http://thaiembdc.org/eastern-economic-corridor-eec/
Meta Information
ContributorLaura Villadiego, Carro de Combate ([email protected])
Last update18/04/2018