Our Research posts are about the latest academic research being done in the School of Economics. This week:
THAILAND’S EXPORT OPPORTUNITIES AND EXPORT POTENTIAL IN ASEAN +3
By Ludo Cuyvers, Ermie Steenkamp & Wilma Viviers
The Asia-Pacific Region is rightly considered as the most dynamic economic region in the world (see e.g. Lasserre and Schütte, 2006). During the past decade the region has taken immense steps of regional economic integration, among which the creation of the ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) and the ASEAN+3 agreements between the ASEAN countries, Japan, China and South Korea. The commitments under AFTA have opened up less-developed economies such as Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia for international trade and investment relations with the more developed ASEAN countries, among which is Thailand. At the same time, international trade and investment links between ASEAN countries, such as Thailand and China, have increased tremendously after the WTO membership of China in December 2001 and will deepen further under the China-ASEAN Free Trade Area which became operative in January 2010.
In this paper, we endeavor to make a quantitative assessment of Thailand’s export opportunities in the Asia-Pacific region. The Asia-Pacific region can be defined as consisting of the countries of East, South-East and South Asia along the Pacific Ocean. Strictly speaking, we should not include India, which is a SAARC country, bordering the Indian Ocean, but because of the signing of the Free Trade Agreement between ASEAN and India in August 2009 it seems appropriate to also include this subcontinent. Nevertheless, for the sake of comparability with some previous results, we decided to exclude India, and concentrate on ASEAN+3. Therefore Thailand’s export opportunities in the other ASEAN countries (Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Vietnam), as well as in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan and South Korea will be identified and investigated. More…