Area: 513,115 sq. km. (198,114 sq. mi.); equivalent to the size of
France, or slightly smaller than Texas.
Cities: Capital--Bangkok (population 9,668,854); Nakhon
Ratchasima (pop. 437,386 for Muang district and 2,565,685 for the
whole province), Chiang Mai (pop. 247,672 for Muang district and
1,595,855 for the whole province).
Terrain: Densely populated central plain; northeastern plateau;
mountain range in the west; southern isthmus joins the land mass
Climate: Tropical monsoon.
Nationality: Noun and adjective--Thai.
Population (2006 est.): 64.6 million.
Labor force (2005): 36.13 million.
Annual population growth rate (2006 est.): 0.68%.
Ethnic groups: Thai 89%, other 11%.
Religions: Buddhist 94-95%, Muslim 4-5%, Christian, Hindu, Brahmin,
Languages: Thai (official language); English is the second language
of the elite; regional dialects.
Education: Years compulsory--12. Literacy--94.9% male,
Health (2006 est.): Infant mortality rate--19.5/1,000.
Life expectancy--70 years male, 74.7 years female.
Type: Constitutional monarchy.
Constitution: New constitution promulgated October 11, 1997.
Independence: Never colonized; traditional founding date 1238.
Branches: Executive--King (chief of state), Prime Minister
(head of government). Legislative--National Assembly
(bicameral). Judicial--composed of the Constitutional Court,
the Courts of Justice, and the Administrative Courts.
Administrative subdivisions: 76 provinces, including Bangkok
municipality, subdivided into 796 districts, 81 subdistricts, 7,255
tambon administration, and 74,435 villages.
Political parties: Multi-party system; Communist Party is
Suffrage: Universal and compulsory at 18 years of age.
GDP (2005): $176.4 billion.
Annual GDP growth rate (2005): 4.5%.
Per capita income (2004): $2,724.
Unemployment rate (2005): 1.8% of total labor force.
Natural resources: Tin, rubber, natural gas, tungsten, tantalum,
timber, lead, fish, gypsum, lignite, fluorite.
Agriculture (8.8% of GDP): Products--rice, tapioca, rubber,
corn, sugarcane, coconuts, soybeans.
Industry: Types--tourism, textiles, garments, agricultural
processing, cement, integrated circuits, jewelry, electronics, and
Trade (2005): Merchandise exports--$109.211 billion:
textiles and footwear, fishery products, computers and parts,
electronics, electrical appliances, jewelry, rice, tapioca products,
integrated circuits, rubber, automobiles. Major markets--ASEAN,
U.S., EU, Japan, China, and Hong Kong. Merchandise imports--$117.788
billion: machinery and parts, petroleum, iron and steel, chemicals,
vehicles and parts, jewelry, fish preparations, electrical
appliances, fertilizers and pesticides. Major suppliers--Japan,
ASEAN, Middle East, EU, China, and U.S.