Junta approves 48 development projects valued at 6.9 billion baht

A government board has approved a series of special projects that come under the Eastern Economic Corridor Development initiative. 48 projects, valued at almost 7 billion baht collectively, will be executed across 60 years beginning from 2017.

On 17 November 2016, Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha, the leader of Thailand’s junta, chaired a meeting of the Policy Committee on Special Economic Zone Development. The key outcome of the meeting was the approval of 48 projects under the Eastern Economic Corridor Development (EECD) project, a national development project spanning the three eastern provinces of Chon Buri, Rayong and Chachoengsao.

The Policy Committee also appointed the Office of the National Economics and Social Development Board (NESDB) to join with relevant ministries to appoint a subcommittee that will drive the execution of the development projects. The projects span across multiple industries and infrastructure concerns, ranging from the development of power and water systems, transportation, tourism, public relations to health services.

The Policy Committee also assigned a state agency with receiving feedback on the projects, especially those that will be quickly rolled out over the next three years. In the meeting, Prayut demanded more information about the specific benefits the Thai people will receive from the projects, such as enhanced quality of life and the development of human resources.

The NESBD has been tasked further with improving the EECD in line with the junta’s 20-year national reform agenda. It must also specify the benefits of the projects within one month.

These details of the EECD were released in a statement issued by Porramethi Wimonsiri, the secretary-general of NESBD, after the Policy Committee meeting. The Bureau of the Budget will continue ironing out the details of the estimated 6.9 billion baht budget, which will be finalised in one month.

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