Facts About Poverty in BangkokBangkok, the capital of Thailand, has long been one of the fastest developing cities in Asia. Thailand has made major developments in its economy, environment and infrastructure in recent years. However, neither the city of Bangkok nor the nation of Thailand is free from poverty. The following are 10 important facts about poverty in Bangkok.

Facts About Poverty in Bangkok

  1. As of 2014, 10.5 percent of Bangkok’s population lives below the national poverty line. 
  2. Over the last 30 years, poverty in Thailand has reduced from 67 percent to 7.2 percent in 2015. The World Bank calls Thailand a great developmental success. 
  3. Poverty reduction since 1988 has been most effective in Bangkok and the surrounding regions. While this is fantastic, it means poverty has become more concentrated in the Northeast region of the nation.
  4. 3.8 million people living in the Northeast are in poverty, compared to 2.3 million in the rest of the nation. The Thai government has been creating poverty reduction policies that span the entire country, but focusing on areas of higher concentration may be more necessary. 
  5. Thailand has achieved gender equality in primary schools and women outnumber men in secondary and tertiary schools. This is a major accomplishment, as it enables women to earn higher incomes in the long term and ultimately reduces poverty.
  6. The Eleventh National Economic and Social Development Plan, which ran from 2012 to 2016, aimed to reduce the number of people living below the poverty line through a variety of strategies, such as restructuring the tax system to improve income distribution in the country.
  7. Between 2013 and 2016, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) partnered with the Thai government to increase the effectiveness of the Eleventh Development Plan. The ADB committed to creating higher and more inclusive growth in Thailand. 
  8. Bangkok is expected to become one of the world’s “megacities” and is likely to have a population of over 10 million people soon.
  9. In 2016, Thailand joined the World Bank Group’s Partnership for Market Readiness, which is an alliance of over 30 nations aiming to reduce the production of greenhouse gases and energy consumption in developing nations. 
  10. Bangkok houses only 10 percent of Thailand’s population, but it contributes more than 50 percent of the national GDP.

As these facts about poverty in Bangkok show, severe poverty remains a problem in Bangkok. The Thai government has been quite proactive in partnering with organizations like the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank and seems to be committed to reducing poverty levels in the country. This is a great sign, and with more projects and increased funding from other countries and organizations, Thailand may be able to eradicate poverty before long, making these facts about poverty in Bangkok a thing of the past.

– Liyanga de Silva

Photo: Flickr