Friday, January 30, 2009

Thailand Facts #32 (445 facts & statistics to date)

“We want the facts to fit the preconceptions. When they don't, it is easier to ignore the facts than to change the preconceptions. “
Jassamyn West

• Thailand produces 16 million pigs per year.
(Bangkok Post, November 5 2008)

• Sanam Luang in Bangkok covers an area of 78 rai and is home to over 3,000 pigeons.
(Bangkok Post, November 13 2008)

• People earning more that $100,000 per year in Thailand are subject to 24% personal income tax comared with 31% in the Philippines and Vietnam and 21% for Malaysia.
(Bangkok Post, November 12 2008)

• Poppy growing areas in the north of Thailand increased from 700 rai in 2006 to 1,800 rai in 2007 and this number is expected to have further increased to 2,000 rai in 2008.
(Narcotics Control Board)

• Between January and September 2008 in Thailand 18,958 kilogrammes of dried marijuana, 2,877 kilogrammes of fresh marijuana, 12,784 kilogrammes of krathom, 1,781 kilogrammes of methamphetamine pills, 338 kilogrammes of addictive syrup, 219 kilogrammes of stimulants, 143 kilogrammes of solvents, 70 kilogrammes of opium and 54 kilogrammes of heroin were confiscated by authorities.
(Narcotics Suppression Bureau)

• During December 31 to January 4, 2008, the top five most popular national parks in Thailand were Doi Inthanon (Chiang Mai) with 69,319 visitors, Khao Yai (Nakhon Ratchasima) with 60,319 visitors, Huay Nam Dang (Chiang Mai) with 49,553 visitors, Doi Suthep-Pui (Chiang Mai) with 32,985 visitors and Erawan (Kanchanaburi) with 18,677 visitors.
(National Parks, Wildlife and Conservation Department)

• Over the seven-day 2008 New Year period 335 people died and 3,810 people were injured due to road accidents, a 9% decrease from 2007.
(Interior Ministry)

• 1.8 million people in Thailand are directly employed in the tourism industry.
(Reuters, December 25 2008)

• Thailand is expected to export 2.4 million tonnes of rubber in 2009, a decrease of 300,000 tonnes from 2008. Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia are the world’s top rubber suppliers.
(Bangkok Post, January 7 2009)

• More than 3,000 children die in Bangkok each year from preventable accidents with drowning and road accidents being the most common.
(Bangkok Post, January 7 2009)

• Newly installed red light cameras in Bangkok caught 25,241 motorists jumping red lights in one week.
(Bangkok Post, January 7 2009)

• 14.87 million people are employed in the farm sector in Thailand.
(National Statistics Office)

• Each year 90,000 Thai babies are born underweight or below 2,500 grams. (Public Health Ministry)

• Currently, Thai children have an average IQ score of 103 and an average height of 165 cm.
(Public Health Ministry)

• Organic farms in Thailand have increased from 6,281 rai in 1998 to 140,939 rai in 2006.
(Thai Organic Trade Association)

• There are an estimated 2.5 million people living in migrant border camps in Thailand.
(Bangkok Post, January 21 2009)

• Since 2004 a total of 25 people have been infected by the bird flu virus in Thailand resulting in 17 deaths.
(Bangkok Post, January 21 2009

• At present, 20 million people of working age in Thailand have health welfare and insurance for old age.
(The Nation, January 23 2009)

• Thailand has about 1.2 million Aids patients.
(Ministry of Public Health)

• There are approximately 2,600 Thai citizens working in the Gaza strip.
(Ministry of Labour)

• The number or SMS and MMS text messages sent in Thailand over New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day totaled over 100 million, and increase of about 25% from 2008.
(Bangkok Post, January 14 2009)

Monday, November 10, 2008

Thailand Facts #31 (425 facts & statistics to date)

"It is possible to store the mind with a million facts and still be entirely uneducated."
Alec Bourne

• There are approximately 27,000 shrimp farms in Thailand.
(Bangkok Post, October 6 2008)

• 3.9 million Europeans and 921,000 Americans visited Thailand in 2007.
(Tourism Authority of Thailand)

• There have been 2,094 reported cases of leptospirosis in Thailand for 2008 resulting in 42 deaths.
(Disease Control Office)

• Thaksin Shinawatra is the only prime minister of Thailand to finish a full term.

• Chulalongkorn University, Thailand’s oldest university is ranked the 166th in the 2008 World University Rankings and is the only Thai university to rank under 200.
(THES and QS World University Rankings)

• Thailand is the world’s 11th largest garment exporter.
(Thai Garment Manufacturers Association)

• In 2007 11 million of the 51 million people in Thailand aged over 15 years old were smokers. Of these, 10 million were men and the rest were women. The average age of those who had started smoking was 18 years old. People aged between 25 and 59 years old had the highest smoke rate at 11 cigarettes per day.
(National Statistics Office).

• Thai Airways has to take up to 210,000 litres of fuel on it’s 13,000 kilometre, 17-hour non-stop flight from Bangkok to Los Angeles.
(Bangkok Post, October 29 2008)

• Wikipedia Thai has 52,000 members and around 39,000 articles with 1.4 million users per month.
(Wikipedia Thai)

• There are around 13 million people working in the farm sector in Thailand of which typically 2 million migrant to Bangkok between January and April to supplement their incomes during the non-harvest season.
(Bangkok Post, November 3 2008)

• Approximately 800,000 new graduates enter the Thai workforce each year. (Bangkok Post, November 3 2008)

• Thailand has the world's tallest Buddhist monument at 127 meters (387 feet) and is located in the town of Nakhon Pathom.

• The first westerner known to visit Thailand was Marco Polomin 1288.

• Two out of the reported 5,567 deaths in the world from box jellyfish venom were in Thailand.
(Bangkok Post, November 5 2008)

• Thailand is the world's fourth-largest exporter of poultry.

• The Thai "royal language" (rajasap) derives from Khmer.

• 125 factories in Thailand laid off a total off 14,761 workers from January 1 to October 31 2008.
(Labour Protection and Welfare Department)

• Slavery was abolished in Thailand in 1905 by King Chulalongkorn.

• Primary school attendance in Thailand is 98% with 88% of primary pupils making it to lower secondary school and 69% to higher secondary school.
(Bangkok Post, November 6 2008)

• There are over 5,000 varieties of rice in Thailand. (New World Encyclopedia)

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Thailand Facts #30 (405 facts & statistics to date)

“Facts are facts and will not disappear on account of your likes.”
Jawaharlal Nehru

• 10% of the Thai population is 60 years or older and by 2027 this figure is expected to increase to 20% of the population.
(Thailand Development Research Institute)

• Bangkok produces 2,000 tons of garbage each day.
(Bangkok Post, September 29 2008)

• A total of 244 fake passports were detected at Suvarnabhumi airport in 2007. Fake Malaysian passports were the highest proportion at 58.
(Suvarnabhumi Immigration Office)

• Surin province is Thailand’s largest producer of Hom Mali (Jasmin) rice.

• There are 630,000 thalassaemia sufferers in Thailand.
(The Nation, September 11 2008)

• Bangkok has had a total of 14 governors over the past 14 years of which only 6 were appointed through elections.
(Bangkok Post, September 15 2008)

• Thailand is the world’s second largest producer of rubber gloves (Malaysia is first) and produces 60 billion pieces per year.

• Around 7,000 to 8,000 new cases of pregnant women infected with HIV/Aids are reported in Thailand each year.
(Bangkok Post, September 22 2008)

• Bangkok is ranked as the 109th best city in the world in terms of quality of living below Kuala Lumpur (75) and above Jakarta (189). Zurich is ranked as the world’s best city.
(Mercer’s 2008 Quality of Living Survey)

• Thailand imported 111.15 tonnes of gold in 2007 worth $1.63 billion. In the first eight months of 2008 Thailand imported 125.29 tonnes of gold worth $3.21 billion.
(Customs Department)

• About 50,000 Thai workers in South Korea are employed legally in factories, construction, agriculture and the fisheries sectors and an estimated 15,000 are working illegally.
(TNA September 25 2008)

• Thailand is the world’s 80th least corrupt country in equal place with Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Brazil and Burkina Faso. Denmark, Sweden and New Zealand share first place and Somalia the last.
(Transparency International Survey)

• Bangkok has 1,700 slums.
(Bangkok Post, September 29 2008)

• Bangkok is rated Thailand’s worst city for human security with Chiang Mai the safest.
(Human Security and Social Development Ministry)

• Japan is now Thailand’s largest export market.

• A total of 25 people have been infected with bird flu in Thailand resulting in 17 deaths since the first outbreak in 2004.
(Bangkok Post, October 1 2008)

• Each Japanese tourist in Thailand spends approximately 4,706 baht per day compared with 4,700 baht for each Indian visitor and 4,651 baht for each Korean visitor.
(Bangkok Post, October 1 2008)

• 78% of computer software used in Thailand is illegal and Thailand ranks 32nd in the world in terms of use of pirated software. Montenegro is the world’s top software pirate.
(Business Software Alliance)

• Apirak Kosayodhin is only the second governor to win a second consecutive term as governor of Bangkok.

• Mobile phone penetration in Thailand has reached 60 million people (92% of the population.
(Bangkok Post, October 6 2008)

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Thailand facts #29 (385 facts & statistics to date)

“Pracitical observation commonly consists of collecting a few facts and loading them with guesses”.

• Twenty of every 100,000 women in Thailand are suffering from breast cancer in the second, third and fourth stages, respectively.
(Dr Yaowanuch Kongdan of Ramathibodi Hospital's Department of Surgery)

• There are approximately 24,000 internet cafĂ©’s in Thailand.
(Bangkok Post, August 6 2008)

• CPF (Charoen Pokphand Foods) controls approximately 40% of Thailand’s nine million tonne feed industry, one-third of an estimated 520,000 tonnes of shrimp production and 30% of chicken production.
(Bangkok Post, August 4 2008)

• The number of people across Thailand classified as poor declined on a year-on-year basis from 6.1 million in 2006 to 5.4 million in 2007. The poverty line was 1,443 baht per head per month during 2007 up from 1,386 baht in the 2006.
(National Economic and Social Development Board)

• The income gap in Thailand between the top 20% of the richest people and the poorest 20% of poor people decreased from 9.9 times in 2006 to 8.6 times in 2007.
(National Economic and Social Development Board)

• The divorce rate in Thailand has increased to 4.35 cases per 1,000 families in 2007, compared with 4.27 cases per 1,000 families in 2006.
(National Economic and Social Development Board)

• Youth crime rate increased to 5.39 cases per 1,000 people, from 5.05 cases for every 1000 people in 2006 and 3.76 cases per 1,000 people in 2002.
(National Economic and Social Development Board)

• The number of elderly people living alone in Thailand increased to 7.4 % of the total elderly population in 2007, up from 7.2% in 2006 and just 6.6% in 2002.
(National Economic and Social Development Board)

• Thailand consumes approximately three million cases of imported whiskey per year worth around 10 billion baht.
(Bangkok Post, August 4 2008)

• Thailand has won eighteen medals (including six gold medals) since it began participating in the Olympic games in 1952.

• Approximately 91,000 new cases of Tuberculosis are reported each year in Thailand and there are currently around 3,000 sufferers with multi-drug resistant varieties.
(Bangkok Post, August 11 2008)

• Compulsory insurance in Thailand costs about 752 baht per year for a passenger car, 1,074 for a pick-up truck and 1,289 for a van. Maximum coverage is 50,000 baht for personal injury caused to a third party and 100,000 baht in case of death. If injured by the driver’s own carelessness, the payout is 15,000 baht for personal injury and 35,000 baht for loss of life.
(Insurance Department)

• 1.4 million health tourists came to Thailand in 2007 with 300,000 coming from Asia, 257,468 from Europe, 152,360 from Middle East and the rest from other countries.
(Bangkok Post, August 18 2008)

• Thailand’s state railway began operation 111 years ago. It covers 4,129 km of rail network, employs 18,000 people and carries 54 million passengers and 14 million tonnes of cargo each year.
(State Enterprises Policy Office)

• In the first six months of 2008 Suvarnabhumi airport handled 21.21 million passengers compared to 18.7 million at Changi Airport (Singpore) and 13.4 million at KLIA (Kuala Lumpur). Suvarnabhumi’s capacity is 45 million passengers and it is expected to reach 44 million this year.
(Bangkok Post, August 11 2008)

• 453,891 visitors from the Middle East came to Thailand in 2007, an increase of 20% from 2006. Average length of stay was 9.48 days with a per capita spend of 4,276.14 baht per day.
(Tourism Authority of Thailand)

• Thailand’s food export volume is expected to grow by 20% in 2008 to reach a record 750 million baht.
(National Food Institute, Federation of Thai Industries and Board of Trade)

• In 2007 8,172 women aged over 18 and 9,579 girls in Thailand suffered abuse last year.
(Health Ministry)

• Thailand produces 730,000 barrels of oil per day.
(Department of Mineral Fuels)

• Heineken has a 93% share of Thailand’s 6.36 billion baht premier beer market.
(Bangkok Post, August 18 2008)

• 77,293 Indonesian tourists came to Thailand in the first six months of 2008.
(Tourism Authority of Thailand)

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Thailand Facts #28 (365 facts & statistics to date)

“In the spider-web of facts, many a truth is strangled.”
Paul Eldridge

• Thailand’s maize production for 2008 is estimated to be 3.77 million tonnes, a 7.10% increase from 2007.
(Office of Agricultural Economics)

• Bangkok currently has 7.5 million square metres of office space.
(CB Richard Ellis)

• Thailand is the world’s third largest producer of tapioca.

• 2.2 million tonnes of plastic ends up in landfills each year in Thailand.
(National Innovation Agency)

• Bangkok has dropped 10 spots to 105th place in the 2008 Mercer worldwide cost of living survey.

• US-Thai bi-relations began in 1883 with the signing of the Treaty of Amity and Commerce. It was during the reign of King Rama 3 and when Andrew Jackson was the U.S president.

• Some 11 million people in Thailand are over 60 years of age.
(Pramote Prasatkul of Mahidol University)

• 800,000 babies are born each year in Thailand.
(Pramote Prasatkul of Mahidol University)

• The number of broadband users is expected to grow to 1.3 million in 2008 and 5 to 10 million in 2009.
(Bangkok Post, July 28 2008)

• 15% of all Honda products made worldwide are made in Thailand.
(Asia Honda Motoring Company)

• Thailand’s biggest ever year for rice exports was the year 2004 when a total of 10.13 million tonnes of rice shipped.
(Thai Rice Exporters Association)

• Thailand is the world’s 14th largest importer of Swiss watches.
(Bangkok Post, July 30 2008)

• The Theravada tradition of Buddhism came to Thailand from Sri Lanka and is shared by peoples in Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, and parts of southern China and southern Vietnam.
(Encyclopedia Britanica)

• 93,000 vehicles in Thailand are now running on natural gas (NGV) and this figure is increasing by 400 daily.
(Bangkok Post, July 30 2008)

• In 2007 there were 523 foreign film productions (films, TV series, commercials, music videos, documentaries etc) shot in Thailand.
(Bangkok Post, July 30 2008)

• 48 people have died from dengue fever and 41,307 people have been infected in Thailand in the first 7 months of 2008.
(Health Ministry)

• Thailand slipped from 4th to 7th place in the 2008 Lonely Planet Travellers’ Pulse survey for countries most likely to visit next.

• Thailand has an estimated 11 million smokers and each year approximately 50,000 Thais die of tobacco related diseases.
(Bangkok Post, August 4 2008)

• During the period January 1st to July 20th 2008 a total of 143 travellers wanted on arrest warrants were caught at Suvarnabhumi airport. During the same period 101 travellers were arrested for using fake travel documents.
(Immigration Bureau Suvarnabhumi)

• Roughly one-third of Thailand’s total population is classified as urban.
(Encyclopedia Britanica)

Friday, July 18, 2008

Thailand Facts #27 (345 facts & statistics to date)

"We must have strong minds, ready to accept facts as they are."
Harry S. Truman

• Approximately 1.9 million people in Thailand are living with disabilities.
(National Satistics Bureau)

• In Thailand at least 35 people are disabled and 350 injured in road accidents averaging 300 cases per day.
(Health Systems Research Institute)

• There are approximately 1,500 advertising billboards in Bangkok.
(Bangkok Post, June 23 2008)

• Thailand ranks 15th in the world for car manufacturing capacity and produces more than a million units per year.
(Bangkok Post, June 23 2008)

• From January through to April 2008 about 190,000 Swedish travellers departed from Stockholm's Arlanda Airport for Thai destinations.
(Tourism Authority of Thailand)

• In 2007, Thailand welcomed 378,387 Swedish visitors. This represents an increase of 23.62 per cent over the previous year.
(Tourism Authority of Thailand)

• Thailand received 1.24 million Japanese tourists last year.
(Bangkok Post, June 25 2008)

• Thailand is the world’s 15th largest food provider and the 2nd largest provider in Asia after China.
(Bangkok Post, June 25 2008)

• Thailand’s first 7-eleven opened in 1989 in Bangkok’s Patpong district.

• In 2007, Thailand received 14.46 million foreign visitors.
(Tourism Authority of Thailand)

• Thailand has 30 prisons housing approximately 170,000 prisoners of which 90,000 are serving time for drug offences.
(Bangkok Post, July 2 2008)

• Gambling transactions in Thailand during the Euro 2008 football championship has been estimated at over 500 million baht.
(Bangkok Post, July 2 2008)

• PTT is the only Thai company to be listed in the Fortune Global 500 largest companies.

• Thailand’s population growth rate estimate for 2008 is 0.64%
(National Statistics Office)

• 66.8% of Thailand’s electricity generation in 2007 was powered by natural gas.

• As of March, 2008 there are a total of 621,437 registered alien workers in Thailand. There are also estimated to be approximately 700,000 illegal aliens within the country.
(Labour Ministry)

• Dutch companies were the second largest foreign investors in Thailand in 2007 after Japan.
(Bangkok Post, July 9 2008)

• The 40 richest people in Thailand are worth USD $25 billion.
(Forbes Magazine)

• A total of 128 teachers, students and education staff have been killed and 213 others wounded in the deep South since the start of the separatist violence there in 2004
(Regional Education Inspector-General's Office).

• Thailand detected its first AIDS case in 1984.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Thailand Facts #26 (325 facts and statistics to date)

“When the mind withdraws into itself and dispenses with facts it makes only chaos.”
Edith Hamilton

• Thailand’s sugar crop for 2008 is expected to be around 7.2 million tonnes, an increase of 8.4% from the 2006-2007 season.
(Bangkok Post, May 12 2008)

• There are approximately 2,500 domesticated elephants and 2,000 wild elephants in Thailand.
(Sorinda Salwala, Friends of Asian Elephants)

• From January to May 10, 2008 there have been 14,000 reported dengue cases in Thailand, an increase of 70% for the same period in 2007.
(Office of Disease Prevention and Control)

• Thailand has approximately 130 million rai of farmland of which 63 million rai are rice fields.
(Bangkok Post, May 20 2008)

• Thailand is the 105th most peaceful country in the world. Iceland is ranked number 1 while Iran is ranked 121st.
(Global Peace Index)

• The average daily food requirement for an adult bull elephant is 150kg.
(Bangkok Post, April 21 2008)

• Every kilogramme of municipal waste in Thailand has up to 30% plastic content.
(Prapoth Pholtitattanapong, Single Points Part Plc)

• Opposition party leader, Abhisit Vejjajiva has over 200,000 friends registered on his homepage on the hi5 website.

• Bangalore’s new airport was built at one-eight of the cost of Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi airport and has four times the capacity.
(Bangkok Post, May 26 2008)

• There are approximately 10,000 private buses operating in Bangkok.
(Bangkok Post, May 28 2008)

• 42% of Thailand’s business work force are sub-contractors labourers.
(Boonyuen Sukmai, Eastern-Region Labour Union Association)

• There are 15.35 million rai of rubber plantations in Thailand of which 11 million are in the South. Total output is estimated to be 3.2 million tonnes with 370,000 tonnes used for local consumption and the remainder for exports.
(Bangkok Post, May 28 2008)

• Thailand’s vehicle ownership is estimated at 125 vehicles for every 1,000 people from which 12 fatalities are reported for every 10,000 road accidents compared with 2 fatalities per 10,000 road accidents in the United States.
(Bangkok Post, June 2 2008)

• The number of people committing suicide in Thailand has increased from 5.7 per 100,000 people in 2007 to 6.5 in 2008.
(Mental Health Department)

• Currently there are 327 KFC outlets in Thailand.
(Bangkok Post, June 4 2008)

• Thailand’s 2008 production of rambutan is estimated to be 415,000 tonnes and estimated production of mangosteen is expected to be 192,000 tonnes.
(Bangkok Post, June 11 2008)

• 90% of Thailand’s mangosteen exports go to China and Hong Kong.
(Bangkok Post, June 11 2008)

• Condom use among Thai’s is 1.5 to 2 per person compared with 4.5 in Japan and 2.5 to 3 in the United States.
(Ansell Thailand)

• Bangkok is ranked 109th in the world for quality of living behind Manila, Jakarta and Kula Lumpa. Zurich is ranked first and Baghdad is ranked 215th (last).
(Mercer World Wide Quality of Living Survey)

• On average Mercedes Benz sells 4,000 cars per year in Thailand.
(Mercedes Benz Thailand)