Thailand

Thailand has a long history of engaging in development co-operation, focusing on South-South co-operation and training with its regional neighbours in the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) region and in triangular co-operation with several OECD countries. Thailand conducts its development co-operation through the Thailand International Co-operation Agency (TICA), under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Neighbouring Countries Economic Development Cooperation Agency (NEDA), under the Ministry of Finance. Thailand brings to the ASEAN region its own experience of transitioning from a significant recipient of aid to a regional donor. Thailand’s total official development assistance (ODA) (USD 67.9 million, preliminary data) decreased in 2023, representing 0.01% of gross national income (GNI).

Find the methodological notes behind the profile here.

Thailand’s current development co-operation priorities are based on the 13th National Economic and Social Development Plan 2023-2027, which aims to transform Thailand in five key areas: 1) narrowing income disparities and poverty reduction through innovation; 2) creating a knowledge-based economy and value-added development; 3) human resource development to meet demand in a digital economy; 4) environmental conservation to deal with climate change; and 5) advanced preparations to deal with changing global economic and social environments and the 20-year Foreign Affairs Masterplan, with its 5 key strategic priorities: 1) security; 2) sustainability; 3) standard; 4) status; and 5) synergy.

Thailand delivers its development co-operation mainly through TICA, which transitioned from being the Department of Technical and Economic Cooperation, which used to process incoming aid. TICA was established in 2004 and focuses on ensuring human security in four areas: 1) health security; 2) job security; 3) food security; and 4) energy and environmental security. Thailand also promotes more balanced, inclusive and sustainable growth by embracing the Bio-Circular-Green Economy Model to complement the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy as Thailand’s development approach.

Thailand engages in various forms of development co-operation, such as development projects, human development and education (training courses, postgraduate scholarships and study visits), as well as programmes to dispatch Thai experts and volunteers. Priority themes include public health, agriculture and food security, climate change, and other topics related to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In addition, NEDA, under the Ministry of Finance, provides concessional loans, mostly to transport and storage projects. Just over half of Thailand’s development assistance is channelled through multilateral co-operation as core contributions. The remainder is provided through bilateral channels and triangular co-operation arrangements.

Thailand provided USD 67.9 million (preliminary data) of ODA in 2023 (USD 65.1 million in constant terms), representing 0.01% of GNI. This was a decrease of 0.8% in real terms in volume and a decrease in the share of GNI from 2022. Despite a slight decrease in 2021-2022, Thailand’s ODA volume has consistently increased over the past ten years. Within Thailand’s ODA portfolio in 2022, 79.3% was provided in the form of grants and 20.7% in the form of non-grants.1

Thailand provided almost all of its ODA bilaterally in 2022. Gross bilateral ODA was 89.1% of total ODA disbursements. A share of 5.8% was provided through multilateral organisations (earmarked contributions). Thailand allocated 10.9% of total ODA as core contributions to multilateral organisations.

In 2022, Thailand provided USD 200 thousand of net bilateral ODA to Ukraine to respond to the impacts of Russia’s war of aggression. In 2021, Thailand did not allocate any of its ODA to Ukraine.

In 2022, Thailand provided USD 11.6 million of gross ODA to the multilateral system, a fall of 33.5% in real terms from 2021. Of this, USD 7.8 million was core multilateral ODA, while USD 3.7 million were non-core contributions earmarked for a specific country, region, theme or purpose. Project-type funding earmarked for a specific theme and/or country accounted for 25.8% of Thailand’s non-core contributions and 74.2% was programmatic funding (to pooled funds and specific-purpose programmes and funds).

Seventy-four per cent of Thailand’s total contributions to multilateral organisations in 2022 were allocated to UN entities and other multilateral organisations, such as ASEAN Secretariat. The World Bank Group and regional development banks received 18.1% of Thailand’s ODA to multilateral organisations.

The UN system received 46.7% of Thailand’s multilateral contributions, mostly through core contributions. Out of a total volume of USD 5.4 million to the UN system, the top three UN recipients of Thailand’s support (core and earmarked contributions) were UNDP (USD 1.5 million), FAO (USD 1.4 million) and ILO (USD 1.2 million).

See the section on Geographic, sectoral and thematic focus of ODA for the breakdown of bilateral allocations, including ODA earmarked through the multilateral development system. Learn more about multilateral development finance.

In 2022, Thailand’s bilateral spending declined compared to the previous year. It provided USD 64 million of gross bilateral ODA (which includes earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations). This represented a decrease of 8.4% in real terms from 2021.

In 2022, country programmable aid was 94% of Thailand’s gross bilateral ODA, compared to a non-DAC country average of 47%.

In 2022, Thailand’s bilateral ODA was primarily focused on South and East Asia. USD 51.3 million was allocated to East Asia and USD 8.8 to South Asia, accounting respectively for 80% and 13.7% of gross bilateral ODA. USD 791 thousand was allocated to Africa and USD 200 thousand to ODA-eligible countries in Europe (of which 99.6% for Ukraine). Asia was also the main regional recipient of Thailand’s earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations. This is mostly in line with Thailand’s overall policy regional focus.

In 2022, 93.2% of gross bilateral ODA went to Thailand’s top 10 recipients. Its top 10 recipients are in Southeast Asia (ASEAN member countries) and other countries in the Asia-Pacific region. The share of gross bilateral ODA not allocated by country was 4.3%.

In 2022, Thailand allocated the highest share of gross bilateral ODA (91.7%) to least developed countries, noting that 4.3% was unallocated by income group. Additionally, Thailand allocated 74.5% of gross bilateral ODA to land-locked developing countries in 2022, equal to USD 47.7 million.

Support to fragile contexts reached USD 58.2 million in 2022, representing 90.8% of Thailand’s gross bilateral ODA. Almost one-third of this ODA was provided in the form of humanitarian assistance, increasing from 0.2% in 2021. Learn more about support to fragile contexts on the States of Fragility platform.

In 2022, more than half of Thailand’s bilateral ODA was allocated to economic infrastructure and services. Investments in this area accounted for 79.2% of bilateral ODA commitments (USD 67 million), primarily in support of transport and storage (USD 66.5 million). ODA for social infrastructure and services totalled USD 8.2 million, focusing on health and population (USD 5.7 million). Humanitarian assistance amounted USD 1 million (1.2%) in 2022.

In 2022, Thailand disbursed USD 5.7 million in ODA for the COVID-19 response in the form of vaccine doses donations.

In 2022, Thailand committed USD 67.5 million (79.8% of its bilateral allocable aid) to promote aid for trade and improve developing countries’ trade performance and integration into the world economy in 2022.

Total official support for sustainable development is an international statistical standard that monitors all official and officially supported resources for financing the SDGs in developing countries, as well as for addressing global challenges. It provides a broader measure of development finance with the objective of increasing transparency and accountability of all external support that developing countries receive.

In 2022, activities reported by Thailand as TOSSD totalled USD 78.5 million, up from USD 58.5 million in 2021, and Thailand’s TOSSD activities in support of sustainable development mostly target SDG 4 Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all and SDG 17 Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development. Activity-level data on TOSSD by recipient are available at: https://tossd.online.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is responsible for Thailand’s bilateral and multilateral development co-operation policies. Its Department of International Organisations also contributes to international organisations, such as the United Nations and the Asian Development Bank.

Thailand’s main implementing bodies of development co-operation are TICA under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and NEDA under the Ministry of Finance. TICA is in charge of technical co-operation with countries worldwide, whereas NEDA covers financial and technical co-operation aspects at a regional level.

Furthermore, 17 line ministries (including education, health and transport) provide grants for bilateral projects and contribute to some multilateral organisations. The Export-Import Bank, under the Minister of Finance, offers concessional loans to developing countries, which are linked to the provision of goods and services from Thai companies.

Thailand International Development Cooperation Agency (TICA): https://tica-thaigov.mfa.go.th/en.

Office of the National Economic and Social Development Council (2023), The Thirteenth National Economic and Social Development Plan (2023-2027), Bangkok, www.nesdc.go.th/nesdb_en/ewt_dl_link.php?nid=4500.

OECD (2022), Development co-operation systems in Southeast Asia: Indonesia, Malaysia, The Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam, OECD, Paris, www.oecd.org/dac/2022-south-east-asian-dev-coop-providers.pdf?utm_source=email-outreach&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=seadevproviders&utm_content=en&utm_term=dcd.

Reporting to the OECD since 2006 at the aggregate level. Reporting activity-level data since 2023 for 2022 activities.

Thailand is an Adherent to the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness.

Thailand expressed interest in becoming a participant to the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC).

The methodological notes provide further details on the definitions and statistical methodologies applied, including the grant-equivalent methodology, core and earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations, country programmable aid, channels of delivery, bilateral ODA unspecified/unallocated, bilateral allocable aid, the gender equality policy marker, and the environment markers.

Note

← 1. Non-grants include sovereign loans, multilateral loans, equity investment and loans to the private sector.

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