30 May 2015
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has stated that his government’s vision is to see Thailand in the years 2015-2020 enjoying "Stability, Prosperity, and Sustainability.”
The statement was part of his remarks at the opening ceremony of the 71st Session of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), on 28 May 2015, at the United Nations Conference Center in Bangkok.
In his remarks, the Prime Minister explained the vision. "Stability includes political stability as well as safety of people’s lives and properties. The rule of law and access to justice are the foundation of development. At the same time, stability is the cornerstone of prosperity as it provides an atmosphere conducive to economic growth, trade and investment. Trade and investment must have prudent measures, risk protection, as well as resistance to shocks such as fluctuations in the global economy or natural disasters. Most importantly, to ensure sustainability, economic growth must be environment-friendly so not to impact on the development capital of future generations.
"Sustainable development must embrace people’s needs and build on a genuine understanding of their concerns on the grounds, from their communities. In this regard, Thailand has been guided by His Majesty the King’s Sufficiency Economy Philosophy in formulating our development policies.
"Sufficiency Economy Philosophy teaches us to build strength from within, at the individual, community and society levels. It teaches us to act with knowledge, understanding and moderation. In business terms, this translates to resource efficiency, evidence-based policy-making, as well as having insurance, immunity and resilience.”
Prime Minister Prayut said that Thailand will strive for a balance between the three pillars of development, namely, economic, social and environment.
"Economic pillar: A strong economy is one that expands inclusively, strives to alleviate poverty and inequality, narrows development gaps, and provides opportunities for equal access to resources. Thus, Thailand emphasizes strengthening the development of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and the agricultural sector. To enhance national competitiveness, we have given high priority to science and technology as well as innovation to create high-value added products.
"Social pillar: Societies must be equal and equitable, adhere to good governance, and geared towards raising the living standards of people in terms of health, education and welfare. Thailand has promoted universal health coverage and has focused on human life-cycle development to promote quality growth of children from birth on, so that one can have a decent employment and retirement with dignity.
"Environmental pillar: The impacts of climate change and natural disasters are common challenges for humankind. Economic growth must not be achieved at the expense of the environment. We should promote renewable energy and environment-friendly industrial development. Moreover, countries must accord priority to disaster risk reduction and strengthening resilience to disasters which are increasing in severity. Other areas in which Thailand attaches great importance to are integrated water resources management, restoration of upstream forests, and incorporating resiliency to urban planning and development to lower losses of lives and properties.”
Prime Minister Prayut emphasized that a balanced and sustainable development can only be achieved with people, quality people. The development of human capital should encompass their physical, mental and intellectual growth. A country’s competitive edge cannot be heightened in the absence of human resources. Access to quality education is a common challenge for many countries. Social development begins in families and schools. Life-long learning must be promoted.
"Moreover, the digital age we are living in now allows us to learn and communicate in every single minute. Therefore, we should use social media to create value and knowledge rather than provoke division and hatred,” he said.