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Thailand vs. Burma

Introduction

ThailandBurma
BackgroundA unified Thai kingdom was established in the mid-14th century. Known as Siam until 1939, Thailand is the only Southeast Asian country never to have been colonized by a European power. A bloodless revolution in 1932 led to the establishment of a constitutional monarchy. In alliance with Japan during World War II, Thailand became a US treaty ally in 1954 after sending troops to Korea and later fighting alongside the US in Vietnam. Thailand since 2005 has experienced several rounds of political turmoil including a military coup in 2006 that ousted then Prime Minister THAKSIN Chinnawat, followed by large-scale street protests by competing political factions in 2008, 2009, and 2010. THAKSIN's youngest sister, YINGLAK Chinnawat, in 2011 led the Puea Thai Party to an electoral win and assumed control of the government. A blanket amnesty bill for individuals involved in street protests, altered at the last minute to include all political crimes - including all convictions against THAKSIN - triggered months of large-scale anti-government protests in Bangkok beginning in November 2013.
In early May 2014, YINGLAK was removed from office by the Constitutional Court and in late May 2014 the Royal Thai Army, led by Royal Thai Army Gen. PRAYUT Chan-ocha, staged a coup against the caretaker government. PRAYUT was appointed prime minister in August 2014. The interim military government created several interim institutions to promote reform and draft a new constitution, which was passed in a national referendum in August 2016. Elections are tentatively set for mid-2018. King PHUMIPHON Adunyadet passed away in October 2016 after 70 years on the throne; his only son, WACHIRALONGKON Bodinthrathepphayawarangkun, ascended the throne in December 2016. He signed the new constitution in April 2017. Thailand has also experienced violence associated with the ethno-nationalist insurgency in its southern Malay-Muslim majority provinces. Since January 2004, thousands have been killed and wounded in the insurgency.
Various ethnic Burmese and ethnic minority city-states or kingdoms occupied the present borders through the 19th century. Over a period of 62 years (1824-1886), Britain conquered Burma and incorporated the country into its Indian Empire. Burma was administered as a province of India until 1937 when it became a separate, self-governing colony; in 1948, Burma attained independence from the British Commonwealth. Gen. NE WIN dominated the government from 1962 to 1988, first as military ruler, then as self-appointed president, and later as political kingpin. In response to widespread civil unrest, NE WIN resigned in 1988, but within months the military crushed student-led protests and took power.
Multiparty legislative elections in 1990 resulted in the main opposition party - the National League for Democracy (NLD) - winning a landslide victory. Instead of handing over power, the junta placed NLD leader (and 1991 Nobel Peace Prize recipient) AUNG SAN SUU KYI under house arrest from 1989 to 1995, 2000 to 2002, and from May 2003 to November 2010. In late September 2007, the ruling junta brutally suppressed protests over increased fuel prices led by prodemocracy activists and Buddhist monks, killing an unknown number of people and arresting thousands for participating in the demonstrations. In early May 2008, Burma was struck by Cyclone Nargis, which left over 138,000 dead and tens of thousands injured and homeless. Despite this tragedy, the junta proceeded with its May constitutional referendum, the first vote in Burma since 1990. Legislative elections held in November 2010, which the NLD boycotted and were considered flawed by many in the international community, saw the ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party garner over 75% of the contested seats.
The national legislature convened in January 2011 and selected former Prime Minister THEIN SEIN as president. Although the vast majority of national-level appointees named by THEIN SEIN were former or current military officers, the government initiated a series of political and economic reforms leading to a substantial opening of the long-isolated country. These reforms included releasing hundreds of political prisoners, signing a nationwide cease-fire with several of the country's ethnic armed groups, pursuing legal reform, and gradually reducing restrictions on freedom of the press, association, and civil society. At least due in part to these reforms, AUNG SAN SUU KYI was elected to the national legislature in April 2012 and became chair of the Committee for Rule of Law and Tranquility. Burma served as chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) for 2014. In a flawed but largely credible national legislative election in November 2015 featuring more than 90 political parties, the NLD again won a landslide victory. Using its overwhelming majority in both houses of parliament, the NLD elected HTIN KYAW, AUNG SAN SUU KYI’s confidant and long-time NLD supporter, as president. Burma's first credibly elected civilian government after more than five decades of military dictatorship was sworn into office on 30 March 2016.

Geography

ThailandBurma
LocationSoutheastern Asia, bordering the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand, southeast of Burma
Southeastern Asia, bordering the Andaman Sea and the Bay of Bengal, between Bangladesh and Thailand
Geographic coordinates15 00 N, 100 00 E
22 00 N, 98 00 E
Map referencesSoutheast Asia
Southeast Asia
Areatotal: 513,120 sq km
land: 510,890 sq km
water: 2,230 sq km
total: 676,578 sq km
land: 653,508 sq km
water: 23,070 sq km
Area - comparativeabout three times the size of Florida; slightly more than twice the size of Wyoming
slightly smaller than Texas
Land boundariestotal: 5,673 km
border countries (4): Burma 2,416 km, Cambodia 817 km, Laos 1,845 km, Malaysia 595 km
total: 6,522 km
border countries (5): Bangladesh 271 km, China 2,129 km, India 1,468 km, Laos 238 km, Thailand 2,416 km
Coastline3,219 km
1,930 km
Maritime claimsterritorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
Climatetropical; rainy, warm, cloudy southwest monsoon (mid-May to September); dry, cool northeast monsoon (November to mid-March); southern isthmus always hot and humid
tropical monsoon; cloudy, rainy, hot, humid summers (southwest monsoon, June to September); less cloudy, scant rainfall, mild temperatures, lower humidity during winter (northeast monsoon, December to April)
Terraincentral plain; Khorat Plateau in the east; mountains elsewhere
central lowlands ringed by steep, rugged highlands
Elevation extremesmean elevation: 287 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Gulf of Thailand 0 m
highest point: Doi Inthanon 2,576 m
mean elevation: 702 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Andaman Sea/Bay of Bengal 0 m
highest point: Gamlang Razi 5,870 m
Natural resourcestin, rubber, natural gas, tungsten, tantalum, timber, lead, fish, gypsum, lignite, fluorite, arable land
petroleum, timber, tin, antimony, zinc, copper, tungsten, lead, coal, marble, limestone, precious stones, natural gas, hydropower, arable land
Land useagricultural land: 41.2%
arable land 30.8%; permanent crops 8.8%; permanent pasture 1.6%
forest: 37.2%
other: 21.6% (2011 est.)
agricultural land: 19.2%
arable land 16.5%; permanent crops 2.2%; permanent pasture 0.5%
forest: 48.2%
other: 32.6% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land64,150 sq km (2012)
22,950 sq km (2012)
Natural hazardsland subsidence in Bangkok area resulting from the depletion of the water table; droughts
destructive earthquakes and cyclones; flooding and landslides common during rainy season (June to September); periodic droughts
Environment - current issuesair pollution from vehicle emissions; water pollution from organic and factory wastes; deforestation; soil erosion; wildlife populations threatened by illegal hunting
deforestation; industrial pollution of air, soil, and water; inadequate sanitation and water treatment contribute to disease
Environment - international agreementsparty to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - notecontrols only land route from Asia to Malaysia and Singapore
strategic location near major Indian Ocean shipping lanes; the north-south flowing Irrawaddy River is the country's largest and most important commercial waterway
Population distributionhighest population density is found in and around Bangkok; significant population clusters found througout large parts of the country, particularly east / northeast of Bankok and in the extreme southern region of the country
population concentrated along coastal areas and in general proximity to the shores of the Irrawaddy River; the extreme north is relatively underpopulated

Demographics

ThailandBurma
Population68,200,824
note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2016 est.)
56,890,418
note: estimates for this country take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2016 est.)
Age structure0-14 years: 17.18% (male 6,000,434/female 5,714,464)
15-24 years: 14.47% (male 5,030,930/female 4,839,931)
25-54 years: 46.5% (male 15,678,250/female 16,038,155)
55-64 years: 11.64% (male 3,728,028/female 4,208,624)
65 years and over: 10.21% (male 3,047,938/female 3,914,070) (2016 est.)
0-14 years: 25.77% (male 7,476,436/female 7,183,049)
15-24 years: 17.73% (male 5,109,120/female 4,978,572)
25-54 years: 43.54% (male 12,326,900/female 12,442,398)
55-64 years: 7.49% (male 2,003,593/female 2,256,146)
65 years and over: 5.47% (male 1,353,723/female 1,760,481) (2016 est.)
Median agetotal: 37.2 years
male: 36.2 years
female: 38.2 years (2016 est.)
total: 28.6 years
male: 28 years
female: 29.3 years (2016 est.)
Population growth rate0.32% (2016 est.)
1% (2016 est.)
Birth rate11.1 births/1,000 population (2016 est.)
18.2 births/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Death rate7.9 deaths/1,000 population (2016 est.)
7.9 deaths/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Net migration rate0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2016 est.)
-0.3 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.98 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.89 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.78 male(s)/female
total population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2016 est.)
at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.99 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.89 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.77 male(s)/female
total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2016 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 9.4 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 10.4 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 8.4 deaths/1,000 live births (2016 est.)
total: 42.2 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 48.3 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 35.7 deaths/1,000 live births (2016 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 74.7 years
male: 71.5 years
female: 78 years (2016 est.)
total population: 66.6 years
male: 64.2 years
female: 69.2 years (2016 est.)
Total fertility rate1.51 children born/woman (2016 est.)
2.15 children born/woman (2016 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate1.12% (2015 est.)
0.76% (2015 est.)
Nationalitynoun: Thai (singular and plural)
adjective: Thai
noun: Burmese (singular and plural)
adjective: Burmese
Ethnic groupsThai 97.5%, Burmese 1.3%, other 1.1%, unspecified <.1% (2015 est.)
Burman (Bamar) 68%, Shan 9%, Karen 7%, Rakhine 4%, Chinese 3%, Indian 2%, Mon 2%, other 5%
note: government recognizes 135 indigenous ethnic groups
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS438,100 (2015 est.)
224,800 (2015 est.)
ReligionsBuddhist 94.6%, Muslim 4.3%, Christian 1%, other <.1%, none <.1% (2015 est.)
Buddhist 87.9%, Christian 6.2%, Muslim 4.3%, Animist 0.8%, Hindu 0.5%, other 0.2%, none 0.1%
note: religion estimate is based on the 2014 national census, including an estimate for the non-enumerated population of Rakhine State, which is assumed to mainly affiliate with the Islamic faith (2014 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths14,200 (2015 est.)
9,700 (2015 est.)
LanguagesThai (official) 90.7%, Burmese 1.3%, other 8%
note: English is a secondary language of the elite (2010 est.)
Burmese (official)
note: minority ethnic groups have their own languages
Literacydefinition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 96.7%
male: 96.6%
female: 96.7% (2015 est.)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 93.1%
male: 95.2%
female: 91.2% (2015 est.)
Major infectious diseasesdegree of risk: very high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea
vectorborne diseases: dengue fever, Japanese encephalitis, and malaria (2016)
degree of risk: very high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
vectorborne diseases: dengue fever, malaria, and Japanese encephalitis
water contact disease: leptospirosis
animal contact disease: rabies (2016)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)total: 16 years
male: 16 years
female: 16 years (2015)
total: 8 years
male: NA
female: NA (2007)
Urbanizationurban population: 50.4% of total population (2015)
rate of urbanization: 2.97% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
urban population: 34.1% of total population (2015)
rate of urbanization: 2.49% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Drinking water sourceimproved:
urban: 97.6% of population
rural: 98% of population
total: 97.8% of population
unimproved:
urban: 2.4% of population
rural: 2% of population
total: 2.2% of population (2015 est.)
improved:
urban: 92.7% of population
rural: 74.4% of population
total: 80.6% of population
unimproved:
urban: 7.3% of population
rural: 25.6% of population
total: 19.4% of population (2015 est.)
Sanitation facility accessimproved:
urban: 89.9% of population
rural: 96.1% of population
total: 93% of population
unimproved:
urban: 10.1% of population
rural: 3.9% of population
total: 7% of population (2015 est.)
improved:
urban: 84.3% of population
rural: 73.9% of population
total: 77.4% of population
unimproved:
urban: 15.7% of population
rural: 26.1% of population
total: 22.6% of population (2012 est.)
Major cities - populationBANGKOK (capital) 9.27 million; Samut Prakan 1.814 million (2015)
RANGOON (Yangon) (capital) 4.802 million; Mandalay 1.167 million; Nay Pyi Taw 1.03 million (2015)
Maternal mortality rate20 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
178 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight9.2% (2012)
22.6% (2010)
Health expenditures6.5% of GDP (2014)
2.3% of GDP (2014)
Physicians density0.39 physicians/1,000 population (2010)
0.57 physicians/1,000 population (2012)
Hospital bed density2.1 beds/1,000 population (2010)
0.6 beds/1,000 population (2006)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate9.2% (2014)
2.9% (2014)
Mother's mean age at first birth23.3 years (2009 est.)
21.8 years
note: median age at first birth among women 25-29 (2007 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate79.3% (2012)
46% (2009/10)
Dependency ratiostotal dependency ratio: 39.2
youth dependency ratio: 24.7
elderly dependency ratio: 14.6
potential support ratio: 6.9 (2015 est.)
total dependency ratio: 49.1
youth dependency ratio: 41.1
elderly dependency ratio: 8
potential support ratio: 12.5 (2015 est.)

Government

ThailandBurma
Country name"conventional long form: Kingdom of Thailand
conventional short form: Thailand
local long form: Ratcha Anachak Thai
local short form: Prathet Thai
former: Siam
etymology: ""Land of the Tai [People]""; the meaning of ""tai"" is uncertain, but may originally have meant ""human beings,"" ""people,"" or ""free people""
"
"conventional long form: Union of Burma
conventional short form: Burma
local long form: Pyidaungzu Thammada Myanma Naingngandaw (translated as the Republic of the Union of Myanmar)
local short form: Myanma Naingngandaw
former: Socialist Republic of the Union of Burma, Union of Myanmar
note: since 1989 the military authorities in Burma and the current parliamentary government have promoted the name Myanmar as a conventional name for their state; the US Government has not adopted the name
etymology: both ""Burma"" and ""Myanmar"" derive from the name of the majority Burmese Bamar ethnic group
"
Government typeconstitutional monarchy; note - interim military-affiliated government since May 2014
parliamentary republic
Capitalname: Bangkok
geographic coordinates: 13 45 N, 100 31 E
time difference: UTC+7 (12 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
name: Rangoon (Yangon); note - Nay Pyi Taw is the administrative capital
geographic coordinates: 16 48 N, 96 09 E
time difference: UTC+6.5 (11.5 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions76 provinces (changwat, singular and plural) and 1 municipality* (maha nakhon); Amnat Charoen, Ang Thong, Bueng Kan, Buri Ram, Chachoengsao, Chai Nat, Chaiyaphum, Chanthaburi, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Chon Buri, Chumphon, Kalasin, Kamphaeng Phet, Kanchanaburi, Khon Kaen, Krabi, Krung Thep* (Bangkok), Lampang, Lamphun, Loei, Lop Buri, Mae Hong Son, Maha Sarakham, Mukdahan, Nakhon Nayok, Nakhon Pathom, Nakhon Phanom, Nakhon Ratchasima, Nakhon Sawan, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Nan, Narathiwat, Nong Bua Lamphu, Nong Khai, Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Pattani, Phangnga, Phatthalung, Phayao, Phetchabun, Phetchaburi, Phichit, Phitsanulok, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Phrae, Phuket, Prachin Buri, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Ranong, Ratchaburi, Rayong, Roi Et, Sa Kaeo, Sakon Nakhon, Samut Prakan, Samut Sakhon, Samut Songkhram, Sara Buri, Satun, Sing Buri, Si Sa Ket, Songkhla, Sukhothai, Suphan Buri, Surat Thani, Surin, Tak, Trang, Trat, Ubon Ratchathani, Udon Thani, Uthai Thani, Uttaradit, Yala, Yasothon
7 regions (taing-myar, singular - taing), 7 states (pyi ne-myar, singular - pyi ne), 1 union territory
regions: Ayeyawady (Irrawaddy), Bago, Magway, Mandalay, Sagaing, Taninthayi, Yangon (Rangoon)
states: Chin, Kachin, Kayah, Kayin, Mon, Rakhine, Shan
union territory: Nay Pyi Taw
Independence1238 (traditional founding date; never colonized)
4 January 1948 (from the UK)
National holidayBirthday of King Maha VAJIRALONGKORN, 28 July (1952)
Independence Day, 4 January (1948); Union Day, 12 February (1947)
Constitutionmany previous; draft of latest completed 29 March 2016, approved by referendum 7 August 2016, signed by the king 6 April 2017; note - the final version has several changes not reflected in the one passed by referendum (2016)
history: previous 1947, 1974 (suspended until 2008); latest drafted 9 April 2008, approved by referendum 29 May 2008; note - several sections of the constitution on state structure were not implemented until August 2010
amendments: proposals require at least 20% approval by the Assembly of the Union membership; passage of amendments to sections of the constitution on basic principles, government structure, branches of government, state emergencies, and amendment procedures requires 75 percent approval by the Assembly and approval in a referendum by absolute majority of registered voters; passage of amendments to other sections requires only 75% Assembly approval (2017)
Legal systemcivil law system with common law influences
mixed legal system of English common law (as introduced in codifications designed for colonial India) and customary law
Suffrage18 years of age; universal and compulsory
18 years of age; universal
Executive branchchief of state: King WACHIRALONGKON Bodinthrathepphayawarangkun (since 1 December 2016); note - King PHUMIPHON Adunyadet, also spelled BHUMIBOL Adulyadej (since 9 June 1946) died 13 October 2016
head of government: Interim Prime Minister Gen. PRAYUT Chan-ocha (since 25 August 2014); Deputy Prime Ministers PRAWIT Wongsuwan, Gen. (since 31 August 2014), THANASAK Patimaprakon, Gen. (since 31 August 2014), WISSANU Kruea-ngam (since 31 August 2014), SOMKHIT Chatusiphithak (since 20 August 2015), PRACHIN Chantong, Air Chief Mar. (since 20 August 2015), NARONG Phiphatthanasai, Adm. (since 20 August 2015)
cabinet: Council of Ministers nominated by the prime minister, appointed by the king; a Privy Council advises the king
elections/appointments: the monarchy is hereditary; the House of Representatives approves a person for Prime Minister who must then by appointed by the King (as stated in the transitory provision of the 2017 constitution); the office of prime minister can be held for up to a total of 8 years
note: Prime Minister YINGLAK Chinnawat, also spelled YINGLUCK Shinawatra, was removed from office on 7 May 2014 after the Constitutional Court ruled she illegally transferred a government official; Thai army declared martial law on 20 May 2014 followed by a coup on 22 May 2014
"chief of state: President HTIN KYAW (since 30 March 2016); Vice Presidents MYINT SWE (since 30 March 2016) and HENRY VAN THIO (since 30 March 2016); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government
head of government: President HTIN KYAW (since 30 March 2016); Vice Presidents MYINT SWE (since 30 March 2016) and HENRY VAN THIO (since 30 March 2016)
note: a parliamentary bill creating the position of ""state counselor"" was signed into law by President HTIN KYAW on 6 April 2016; a state counsellor serves the equivalent term of the president and is similar to a prime minister in that the holder acts as a link between the parliament and the executive branch
state counsellor: State Counsellor AUNG SAN SUU KYI (since 6 April 2016); she concurrently serves as minister of foreign affairs and minister for the office of the president
cabinet: Cabinet appointments shared by the president and the commander-in-chief
elections/appointments: president indirectly elected by simple majority vote by the full Assembly of the Union from among 3 vice-presidential candidates nominated by the Presidential Electoral College (consists of members of the lower and upper houses and military members); the other 2 candidates become vice-presidents (president elected for a 5-year term); election last held on 15 March 2016 (next to be held in 2021)
election results: HTIN KYAW elected president; Assembly of the Union vote: HTIN KYAW 360, MYINT SWE 213, HENRY VAN THIO 79 (652 votes cast)
"
Legislative branchdescription: in transition; following the May 2014 military coup, a National Legislative Assembly or Sapha Nitibanyat Haeng Chat of no more than 220 members replaced the bicameral National Assembly; expanded to 250 members in September 2016; elections for a permanent legislative body are currently unscheduled and probably will not occur until mid-2017; the 2017 constitution calls for a 250-member military-appointed Senate with 5-year terms and a 500-member elected House of Representatives with 4-year terms
elections: Senate - last held on 30 March 2014; House of Representatives - last held on 2 February 2014, but later declared invalid by the Constitutional Court
election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NA; House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NA
description: bicameral Assembly of the Union or Pyidaungsu consists of an upper house - the House of Nationalities or Amyotha Hluttaw, (224 seats; 168 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by absolute majority vote with a second round if needed and 56 appointed by the military; members serve 5-year terms) and a lower house - the House of Representatives or Pyithu Hluttaw, (440 seats; 330 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote and 110 appointed by the military; members serve 5-year terms)
elections: last held on 8 November 2015 (next to be held in 2020)
election results: Upper House - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NLD 135, USDP 11, ANP 10, SNLD 3, ZCD 2, TNP 2, independent 2, other 3, military appointees 56; Lower House - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NLD 255, USDP 30, ANP 12, SNLD 12, PNO 3, TNP 3, ZCD 2, LNDP 2, independent 1, other 3, canceled due to insurgence 7, military appointees 110
Judicial branchhighest court(s): Supreme Court of Justice (consists of court president, 6 vice-presidents, and 60-70 judges, and organized into 10 divisions); Constitutional Court (consists of court president and 8 judges); Supreme Administrative Court (number of judges determined by Judicial Commission of the Administrative Courts)
judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court judges selected by the Judicial Commission of the Courts of Justice and approved by the monarch; judge term determined by the monarch; Constitutional Court justices - 3 judges drawn from the Supreme Court, 2 judges drawn from the Administrative Court, and 4 judge candidates selected by the Selective Committee for Judges of the Constitutional Court and confirmed by the Senate; judges appointed by the monarch to serve single 9-year terms; Supreme Administrative Court judges selected by the Judicial Commission of the Administrative Courts and appointed by the monarch; judges appointed for life
subordinate courts: courts of first instance and appeals courts within both the judicial and administrative systems; military courts
highest court(s): Supreme Court of the Union (consists of the chief justice and 7-11 judges)
judge selection and term of office: chief justice and judges nominated by the president, with approval of the Lower House, and appointed by the president; judges normally serve until mandatory retirement at age 70
subordinate courts: High Courts of the Region; High Courts of the State; Court of the Self-Administered Division; Court of the Self-Administered Zone; district and township courts; special courts (for juvenile, municipal, and traffic offenses); courts martial
Political parties and leadersChat Patthana Party or CPN (National Development Party) [WANNARAT Channukun]
Chat Thai Phatthana Party or CTP (Thai Nation Development Party) [THEERA Wongsamut]
Mahachon Party or Mass Party [APHIRAT Sirinawin]
Matuphum Party (Motherland Party) [Gen. SONTHI Bunyaratkalin]
Phalang Chon Party (People Chonburi Power Party) [SONTHAYA Khunpluem]
Phumchai (Bhumjai) Thai Party or PJT (Thai Pride) [ANUTHIN Chanwirakun]
Prachathipat Party or DP (Democrat Party) [ABHISIT Wechachiwa, also spelled ABHISIT Vejjajiva]
Prachathipatai Mai Party (New Democracy Party) [SURATIN Phichan]
Puea Thai Party (For Thais Party) or PTP [acting leader VIROT Paoin]
Rak Prathet Thai Party (Love Thailand Party) [acting leader Surapong WETCHAKORN]
Rak Santi Party (Peace Conservation Party) [Pol. Lt. Gen. THAWIN Surachetphong]
All Mon Region Democracy Party or AMRDP [NAING NGWE THEIN]
Arakan National Party or ANP [Dr. AYE MAUNG] (formed from the 2013 merger of the Rakhine Nationalities Development Party and the Arakan League for Democracy)
National Democratic Force or NDF [KHIN MAUNG SWE]
National League for Democracy or NLD [AUNG SAN SUU KYI]
National Unity Party or NUP [THAN TIN]
Pa-O National Organization or PNO [AUNG KHAN HTI]
Shan Nationalities Democratic Party or SNDP [SAI AIK PAUNG]
Shan Nationalities League for Democracy or SNLD [KHUN HTUN OO]
Ta'ang National Party or TNP [AIK MONE]
Union Solidarity and Development Party or USDP [THAN HTAY]
Zomi Congress for Democracy or ZCD [PU CIN SIAN THANG]
numerous smaller parties
Political pressure groups and leadersMulticolor Group
People's Democratic Reform Committee or PDRC
Student and People Network for Thailand's Reform or STR
United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship or UDD
Thai border: Ethnic Nationalities Council or ENC
Federation of Trade Unions-Burma or FTUB (exile trade union and labor advocates)
United Nationalities Federal Council or UNFC
inside Burma: Kachin Independence Organization
Karen National Union or KNU
Karenni National People's Party or KNPP
United Wa State Army or UWSA
88 Generation Students (pro-democracy movement)
several other Chin, Karen, Mon, and Shan factions
note: many restrictions on freedom of expression have been relaxed by the government; a limited number of political groups, other than parties, are approved by the government
International organization participationADB, APEC, ARF, ASEAN, BIMSTEC, BIS, CD, CICA, CP, EAS, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, NAM, OAS (observer), OIC (observer), OIF (observer), OPCW, OSCE (partner), PCA, PIF (partner), UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMOGIP, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
ADB, ARF, ASEAN, BIMSTEC, CP, EAS, EITI (candidate country), FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO (correspondent), ITU, ITUC (NGOs), NAM, OPCW (signatory), SAARC (observer), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador PHISAN Manawaphat (since 23 February 2015)
chancery: 1024 Wisconsin Avenue NW, Suite 401, Washington, DC 20007
telephone: [1] (202) 944-3600
FAX: [1] (202) 944-3611
consulate(s) general: Chicago, Los Angeles, New York
chief of mission: Ambassador AUNG LYNN (since 16 September 2016)
chancery: 2300 S Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 332-3344
FAX: [1] (202) 332-4351
consulate(s) general: Los Angeles, New York
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador Glyn T. DAVIES (since 27 November 2015)
embassy: 95 Wireless Road, Bangkok 10330
mailing address: APO AP 96546
telephone: [66] (2) 205-4000
FAX: [66] (2) 254-2990, 205-4131
consulate(s) general: Chiang Mai
chief of mission: Ambassador Scot MARCIEL (since 27 April 2016)
embassy: 110 University Avenue, Kamayut Township, Rangoon
mailing address: Box B, APO AP 96546
telephone: [95] (1) 536-509, 535-756, 538-038
FAX: [95] (1) 511-069
Flag descriptionfive horizontal bands of red (top), white, blue (double width), white, and red; the red color symbolizes the nation and the blood of life; white represents religion and the purity of Buddhism; blue stands for the monarchy
note: similar to the flag of Costa Rica but with the blue and red colors reversed
design consists of three equal horizontal stripes of yellow (top), green, and red; centered on the green band is a large white five-pointed star that partially overlaps onto the adjacent colored stripes; the design revives the triband colors used by Burma from 1943-45, during the Japanese occupation
National anthem"name: ""Phleng Chat Thai"" (National Anthem of Thailand)
lyrics/music: Luang SARANUPRAPAN/Phra JENDURIYANG
note: music adopted 1932, lyrics adopted 1939; by law, people are required to stand for the national anthem at 0800 and 1800 every day; the anthem is played in schools, offices, theaters, and on television and radio during this time; ""Phleng Sanlasoen Phra Barami"" (A Salute to the Monarch) serves as the royal anthem and is played in the presence of the royal family and during certain state ceremonies
"
"name: ""Kaba Ma Kyei"" (Till the End of the World, Myanmar)
lyrics/music: SAYA TIN
note: adopted 1948; Burma is among a handful of non-European nations that have anthems rooted in indigenous traditions; the beginning portion of the anthem is a traditional Burmese anthem before transitioning into a Western-style orchestrated work
"
International law organization participationhas not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
National symbol(s)garuda (mythical half-man, half-bird figure), elephant; national colors: red, white, blue
chinthe (mythical lion); national colors: yellow, green, red, white
Citizenshipcitizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of Thailand
dual citizenship recognized: no
residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years
citizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: both parents must be citizens of Burma
dual citizenship recognized: no
residency requirement for naturalization: none
note: an applicant for naturalization must be the child or spouse of a citizen

Economy

ThailandBurma
Economy - overviewWith a relatively well-developed infrastructure, a free-enterprise economy, and generally pro-investment policies, Thailand is highly dependent on international trade, with exports accounting for about two-thirds of GDP. Thailand’s exports include electronics, agricultural commodities, automobiles and parts, and processed foods. The industry and service sectors produce about 90% of GDP. The agricultural sector, comprised mostly of small-scale farmers, contributes only 10% of GDP but employs about one-third of the labor force. Thailand has attracted an estimated 3.0-4.5 million migrant workers, mostly from neighboring countries.

Over the last few decades, Thailand has had strong growth and has reduced poverty substantially. In 2013, the Thai Government implemented a nationwide 300 baht (roughly $10) per day minimum wage policy and deployed new tax reforms designed to lower rates on middle-income earners.

Growth has slowed in the last few years, however, due to domestic political turmoil and sluggish global demand. Nevertheless, Thailand’s economic fundamentals are sound, with low inflation, low unemployment, and reasonable public and external debt levels. Tourism and government spending - mostly on infrastructure and short-term stimulus measures – have helped to boost the economy, and The Bank of Thailand has been supportive, with several interest rate reductions.

Over the longer-term, Thailand faces labor shortages, and domestic debt levels, political uncertainty, and an aging population pose risks to growth.
Since the transition to a civilian government in 2011, Burma has begun an economic overhaul aimed at attracting foreign investment and reintegrating into the global economy. Economic reforms have included establishing a managed float of the Burmese kyat in 2012, granting the Central Bank operational independence in July 2013, enacting a new Anti-corruption Law in September 2013, and granting licenses to nine foreign banks in 2014 and four more foreign banks in 2016. State Counselor AUNG SAN SUU KYI and the ruling National League for Democracy, who took power in March 2016, are seeking to improve Burma’s investment climate, following the US sanctions lift in October 2016 and reinstatement of Generalized System of Preferences trade benefits in November 2016. In October 2016, Burma passed a revised updated Foreign Investment Law that consolidates investment regulations and eases the investment approval process. Parliament is also expected to pass amendments to the Companies Law and Gemstone Law later this year.

The government reforms since 2011 and the subsequent easing of most Western sanctions led to accelerated growth, from under 6% in 2011 to roughly 8% in 2013 through 2016. While the economy is expected to grow by 6.5% this year, the World Bank and IMF predict that growth will return to over 7 % per year during the next three years. In 2015, growth slowed slightly because of political uncertainty in an election year, summer floods, and external factors, including China’s slowdown and lower commodity prices. Burma’s abundant natural resources and young labor force are attracting foreign investment in the energy, garment, information technology, and food and beverage sectors.

Despite these improvements, living standards have not improved for the majority of the people residing in rural areas. Burma remains one of the poorest countries in Asia – approximately 26% of the country’s 51 million people live in poverty. The isolationist policies and economic mismanagement of previous governments have left Burma with poor infrastructure, endemic corruption, underdeveloped human resources, and inadequate access to capital, which will require a major commitment to reverse. The Burmese government has been slow to address impediments to economic development such as insecure land rights, a restrictive trade licensing system, an opaque revenue collection system, and an antiquated banking system. AUNG SAN SUU KYI’s government is focusing on accelerating agricultural productivity and land reforms, modernizing and opening the financial sector, and developing transportation and electricity infrastructure.
GDP (purchasing power parity)$1.161 trillion (2016 est.)
$1.125 trillion (2015 est.)
$1.093 trillion (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
$307.3 billion (2016 est.)
$288.6 billion (2015 est.)
$268.9 billion (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
GDP - real growth rate3.2% (2016 est.)
2.9% (2015 est.)
0.9% (2014 est.)
6.5% (2016 est.)
7.3% (2015 est.)
8.7% (2014 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$16,800 (2016 est.)
$16,300 (2015 est.)
$15,900 (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
$6,000 (2016 est.)
$5,600 (2015 est.)
$5,200 (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 8.9%
industry: 35.9%
services: 55.3% (2016 est.)
agriculture: 26.3%
industry: 27.5%
services: 46.2% (2016 est.)
Population below poverty line7.2% (2015 est.)
25.6% (2016 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 2.8%
highest 10%: 31.5% (2009 est.)
lowest 10%: 2.8%
highest 10%: 32.4% (1998)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)0.2% (2016 est.)
-0.9% (2015 est.)
8.9% (2016 est.)
10.8% (2015 est.)
Labor force38.45 million (2016 est.)
37.15 million (2016 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 31.8%
industry: 16.7%
services: 51.5% (2015 est.)
agriculture: 70%
industry: 7%
services: 23% (2001 est.)
Unemployment rate0.9% (2016 est.)
0.9% (2015 est.)
4.8% (2016 est.)
5% (2015 est.)
Budgetrevenues: $76.69 billion
expenditures: $86.94 billion (2016 est.)
revenues: $8.944 billion
expenditures: $10.99 billion (2016 est.)
Industriestourism, textiles and garments, agricultural processing, beverages, tobacco, cement, light manufacturing such as jewelry and electric appliances, computers and parts, integrated circuits, furniture, plastics, automobiles and automotive parts, agricultural machinery, air conditioning and refrigeration, ceramics, aluminum, chemical, environmental management, glass, granite and marble, leather, machinery and metal work, petrochemical, petroleum refining, pharmaceuticals, printing, pulp and paper, rubber, sugar, rice, fishing, cassava, world's second-largest tungsten producer and third-largest tin producer
agricultural processing; wood and wood products; copper, tin, tungsten, iron; cement, construction materials; pharmaceuticals; fertilizer; oil and natural gas; garments; jade and gems
Industrial production growth rate3.1% (2016 est.)
12.2% (2016 est.)
Agriculture - productsrice, cassava (manioc, tapioca), rubber, corn, sugarcane, coconuts, palm oil, pineapple, livestock, fish products
rice, pulses, beans, sesame, groundnuts; sugarcane; fish and fish products; hardwood
Exports$215.3 billion (2016 est.)
$214.4 billion (2015 est.)
$10.49 billion (2016 est.)
$9.135 billion (2015 est.)
note: official export figures are grossly underestimated due to the value of timber, gems, narcotics, rice, and other products smuggled to Thailand, China, and Bangladesh
Exports - commoditiesautomobiles and parts, computer and parts, jewelry and precious stones, polymers of ethylene in primary forms, refine fuels, electronic integrated circuits, chemical products, rice, fish products, rubber products, sugar, cassava, poultry, machinery and parts, iron and steel and their products
natural gas; wood products; pulses and beans; fish; rice; clothing; minerals, including jade and gems
Exports - partnersUS 11.2%, China 11.1%, Japan 9.4%, Hong Kong 5.5%, Malaysia 4.8%, Australia 4.6%, Vietnam 4.2%, Singapore 4.1% (2015)
China 37.8%, Thailand 25.7%, India 7.4%, Japan 6.2% (2015)
Imports$194.7 billion (2016 est.)
$202.7 billion (2015 est.)
$13.96 billion (2016 est.)
$12.49 billion (2015 est.)
note: import figures are grossly underestimated due to the value of consumer goods, diesel fuel, and other products smuggled in from Thailand, China, Malaysia, and India
Imports - commoditiesmachinery and parts, crude oil, electrical machinery and parts, chemicals, iron & steel and product, electronic integrated circuit, automobile’s parts, jewelry including silver bars and gold, computers and parts, electrical household appliances, soybean, soybean meal, wheat, cotton, dairy products
fabric; petroleum products; fertilizer; plastics; machinery; transport equipment; cement, construction materials; food products? edible oil
Imports - partnersChina 20.3%, Japan 15.4%, US 6.9%, Malaysia 5.9%, UAE 4% (2015)
China 42.1%, Thailand 18.4%, Singapore 11%, Japan 4.8% (2015)
Debt - external$131.4 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$131.4 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$9.041 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$7.407 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Exchange ratesbaht per US dollar -
35.4 (2016 est.)
34.248 (2015 est.)
34.248 (2014 est.)
32.48 (2013 est.)
31.08 (2012 est.)
kyats (MMK) per US dollar -
1,205.9 (2016 est.)
1,162.62 (2015 est.)
1,162.62 (2014 est.)
984.35 (2013 est.)
853.48 (2012 est.)
Fiscal year1 October - 30 September
1 April - 31 March
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$171.9 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$156.5 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$8.913 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$8.463 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Current Account Balance$46.41 billion (2016 est.)
$32.15 billion (2015 est.)
-$4.341 billion (2016 est.)
-$3.067 billion (2015 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)$406.8 billion (2016 est.)
$68.28 billion (2016 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$348.8 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$430.4 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
$354.4 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$NA
Central bank discount rate1.5% (31 December 2016)
1.5% (31 December 2015)
9.95% (31 December 2010)
12% (31 December 2009)
Commercial bank prime lending rate6.4% (31 December 2016 est.)
6.56% (31 December 2015 est.)
15% (31 December 2016 est.)
13% (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$501.5 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$486.6 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$21.22 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$16.01 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of narrow money$50.36 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$49.27 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$18.37 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$13.8 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Taxes and other revenues18.9% of GDP (2016 est.)
13.1% of GDP (2016 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-2.5% of GDP (2016 est.)
-3% of GDP (2016 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 50.9%
government consumption: 17.9%
investment in fixed capital: 24.1%
investment in inventories: -1.4%
exports of goods and services: 65.4%
imports of goods and services: -56.9% (2016 est.)
household consumption: 57.9%
government consumption: 6.2%
investment in fixed capital: 37.7%
investment in inventories: 0.2%
exports of goods and services: 24.4%
imports of goods and services: -26.4% (2016 est.)
Gross national saving34.1% of GDP (2016 est.)
32% of GDP (2015 est.)
27.9% of GDP (2014 est.)
16.3% of GDP (2016 est.)
15.2% of GDP (2015 est.)
17.9% of GDP (2014 est.)

Energy

ThailandBurma
Electricity - production177.6 billion kWh (2014 est.)
14 billion kWh (2014 est.)
Electricity - consumption164 billion kWh (2014 est.)
11 billion kWh (2014 est.)
Electricity - exports1.6 billion kWh (2014 est.)
0 kWh (2013 est.)
Electricity - imports12 billion kWh (2014 est.)
0 kWh (2013 est.)
Oil - production248,200 bbl/day (2015 est.)
15,000 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - imports897,800 bbl/day (2013 est.)
57 bbl/day (2013 est.)
Oil - exports30,010 bbl/day (2013 est.)
2,775 bbl/day (2013 est.)
Oil - proved reserves400 million bbl (1 January 2016 est.)
50 million bbl (1 January 2016 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves219.5 billion cu m (1 January 2016 es)
283.2 billion cu m (1 January 2016 es)
Natural gas - production42.15 billion cu m (2014 est.)
16.8 billion cu m (2014 est.)
Natural gas - consumption53.75 billion cu m (2014 est.)
4.1 billion cu m (2014 est.)
Natural gas - exports0 cu m (2013 est.)
12.7 billion cu m (2014 est.)
Natural gas - imports11.6 billion cu m (2014 est.)
0 cu m (2013 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity40 million kW (2014 est.)
4.3 million kW (2014 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels90.2% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
24.8% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants6.5% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
75.2% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels0% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
0% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources3.3% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
0% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production1.273 million bbl/day (2013 est.)
15,700 bbl/day (2013 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption1.231 million bbl/day (2014 est.)
61,000 bbl/day (2014 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports241,800 bbl/day (2013 est.)
0 bbl/day (2013 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports75,400 bbl/day (2013 est.)
43,880 bbl/day (2013 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy301 million Mt (2013 est.)
15 million Mt (2013 est.)
Electricity accesspopulation without electricity: 700,000
electrification - total population: 99%
electrification - urban areas: 99.7%
electrification - rural areas: 98.3% (2013)
population without electricity: 36,300,000
electrification - total population: 52%
electrification - urban areas: 95%
electrification - rural areas: 31% (2013)

Telecommunications

ThailandBurma
Telephones - main lines in usetotal subscriptions: 5.309 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 8 (July 2015 est.)
total subscriptions: 523,722
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 1 (July 2015 est.)
Telephones - mobile cellulartotal: 84.797 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 125 (July 2015 est.)
total: 41.529 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 74 (July 2015 est.)
Telephone systemgeneral assessment: high quality system, especially in urban areas like Bangkok
domestic: fixed-line system provided by both a government-owned and commercial provider; wireless service expanding rapidly
international: country code - 66; connected to major submarine cable systems providing links throughout Asia, Australia, Middle East, Europe, and US; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (1 Indian Ocean, 1 Pacific Ocean) (2015)
general assessment: meets minimum requirements for local and intercity service for business and government
domestic: the government eased its monopoly on communications in 2013 and granted telecom licenses to two foreign operators, which has resulted in a dramatic expansion of the wireless network
international: country code - 95; landing point for the SEA-ME-WE-3 optical telecommunications submarine cable that provides links to Asia, the Middle East, and Europe; satellite earth stations - 2, Intelsat (Indian Ocean) and ShinSat (2015)
Internet country code.th
.mm
Internet userstotal: 26.726 million
percent of population: 39.3% (July 2015 est.)
total: 12.278 million
percent of population: 21.8% (July 2015 est.)
Broadcast media26 digital TV stations in Bangkok broadcast nationally, 6 terrestrial TV stations in Bangkok broadcast nationally via relay stations - 2 of the stations are owned by the military, the other 4 are government-owned or controlled, leased to private enterprise, and all are required to broadcast government-produced news programs twice a day; multi-channel satellite and cable TV subscription services are available; radio frequencies have been allotted for more than 500 government and commercial radio stations; many small community radio stations operate with low-power transmitters (2017)
government controls all domestic broadcast media; 2 state-controlled TV stations with 1 of the stations controlled by the armed forces; 2 pay-TV stations are joint state-private ventures; access to satellite TV is limited; 1 state-controlled domestic radio station and 9 FM stations that are joint state-private ventures; transmissions of several international broadcasters are available in parts of Burma; the Voice of America (VOA), Radio Free Asia (RFA), BBC Burmese service, the Democratic Voice of Burma (DVB), and Radio Australia use shortwave to broadcast in Burma; VOA, RFA, and DVB produce daily TV news programs that are transmitted by satellite to audiences in Burma; in March 2017, the government granted licenses to 5 private broadcasters, allowing them digital free-to-air TV channels to be operated in partnership with government-owned Myanmar Radio and Television (MRTV) and will rely upon MRTV’s transmission infrastructure; the new channels are expected to begin airing programming early in 2018 (2017)

Transportation

ThailandBurma
Railwaystotal: 4,127 km
standard gauge: 84 km 1.435-m gauge (84 km electrified)
narrow gauge: 4,043 km 1.000-m gauge (2017)
total: 5,031 km
narrow gauge: 5,031 km 1.000-m gauge (2008)
Roadwaystotal: 180,053 km (includes 450 km of expressways) (2006)
total: 34,377 km (includes 358 km of expressways) (2010)
Waterways4,000 km (3,701 km navigable by boats with drafts up to 0.9 m) (2011)
12,800 km (2011)
Pipelinescondensate 2 km; gas 5,900 km; liquid petroleum gas 85 km; oil 1 km; refined products 1,097 km (2013)
gas 3,739 km; oil 1,321 km (2017)
Ports and terminalsmajor seaport(s): Bangkok, Laem Chabang, Map Ta Phut, Prachuap Port, Si Racha
container port(s) (TEUs): Bangkok (1,305,229), Laem Chabang (5,731,063)
LNG terminal(s) (import): Map Ta Phut
major seaport(s): Mawlamyine (Moulmein), Sittwe
river port(s): Rangoon (Yangon) (Rangoon River)
Merchant marinetotal: 363
by type: bulk carrier 31, cargo 99, chemical tanker 28, container 18, liquefied gas 36, passenger 1, passenger/cargo 10, petroleum tanker 114, refrigerated cargo 24, roll on/roll off 1, vehicle carrier 1
foreign-owned: 13 (China 1, Hong Kong 1, Malaysia 3, Singapore 1, Taiwan 1, UK 6)
registered in other countries: 46 (Bahamas 4, Belize 1, Honduras 2, Panama 6, Singapore 33) (2010)
total: 29
by type: cargo 22, passenger 2, passenger/cargo 3, specialized tanker 1, vehicle carrier 1
foreign-owned: 2 (Germany 1, Japan 1)
registered in other countries: 3 (Panama 3) (2010)
Airports101 (2013)
64 (2013)
Airports - with paved runwaystotal: 63
over 3,047 m: 8
2,438 to 3,047 m: 12
1,524 to 2,437 m: 23
914 to 1,523 m: 14
under 914 m: 6 (2013)
total: 36
over 3,047 m: 12
2,438 to 3,047 m: 11
1,524 to 2,437 m: 12
under 914 m: 1 (2013)
Airports - with unpaved runwaystotal: 38
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 10
under 914 m: 26 (2013)
total: 28
over 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 4
914 to 1,523 m: 10
under 914 m: 13 (2013)
Heliports7 (2013)
11 (2013)

Military

ThailandBurma
Military branchesRoyal Thai Armed Forces (Kongthap Thai, RTARF): Royal Thai Army (Kongthap Bok Thai, RTA), Royal Thai Navy (Kongthap Ruea Thai, RTN, includes Royal Thai Marine Corps), Royal Thai Air Force (Kongthap Agard Thai, RTAF) (2017)
Burmese Defense Service (Tatmadaw): Army (Tatmadaw Kyi), Navy (Tatmadaw Yay), Air Force (Tatmadaw Lay) (2013)
Military service age and obligation21 years of age for compulsory military service; 18 years of age for voluntary military service; males register at 18 years of age; 2-year conscript service obligation (2012)
18-35 years of age (men) and 18-27 years of age (women) for voluntary military service; no conscription (a 2010 law reintroducing conscription has not yet entered into force); 2-year service obligation; male (ages 18-45) and female (ages 18-35) professionals (including doctors, engineers, mechanics) serve up to 3 years; service terms may be stretched to 5 years in an officially declared emergency; Burma signed the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) on 15 August 1991; on 27 June 2012, the regime signed a Joint Action Plan on prevention of child recruitment; in February 2013, the military formed a new task force to address forced child conscription; approximately 600 children have been released from military service since the signing of the joint action plan (2015)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP1.45% of GDP (2015)
1.42% of GDP (2014)
1.41% of GDP (2013)
1.38% of GDP (2012)
1.49% of GDP (2011)
3.5% of GDP (2015)
3.58% of GDP (2014)
3.81% of GDP (2013)
3.71% of GDP (2012)

Transnational Issues

ThailandBurma
Disputes - internationalseparatist violence in Thailand's predominantly Malay-Muslim southern provinces prompt border closures and controls with Malaysia to stem insurgent activities; Southeast Asian states have enhanced border surveillance to check the spread of avian flu; talks continue on completion of demarcation with Laos but disputes remain over several islands in the Mekong River; despite continuing border committee talks, Thailand must deal with Karen and other ethnic rebels, refugees, and illegal cross-border activities; Cambodia and Thailand dispute sections of boundary; in 2011, Thailand and Cambodia resorted to arms in the dispute over the location of the boundary on the precipice surmounted by Preah Vihear temple ruins, awarded to Cambodia by ICJ decision in 1962 and part of a planned UN World Heritage site; Thailand is studying the feasibility of jointly constructing the Hatgyi Dam on the Salween river near the border with Burma; in 2004, international environmentalist pressure prompted China to halt construction of 13 dams on the Salween River that flows through China, Burma, and Thailand; approximately 105,000 mostly Karen refugees fleeing civil strife, political upheaval and economic stagnation in Burma live in remote camps in Thailand near the border
over half of Burma's population consists of diverse ethnic groups who have substantial numbers of kin in neighboring countries; the Naf River on the border with Bangladesh serves as a smuggling and illegal transit route; Bangladesh struggles to accommodate 29,000 Rohingya, Burmese Muslim minority from Arakan State, living as refugees in Cox's Bazar; Burmese border authorities are constructing a 200 km (124 mi) wire fence designed to deter illegal cross-border transit and tensions from the military build-up along border with Bangladesh in 2010; Bangladesh referred its maritime boundary claims with Burma and India to the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea; Burmese forces attempting to dig in to the largely autonomous Shan State to rout local militias tied to the drug trade, prompts local residents to periodically flee into neighboring Yunnan Province in China; fencing along the India-Burma international border at Manipur's Moreh town is in progress to check illegal drug trafficking and movement of militants; over 100,000 mostly Karen refugees and asylum seekers fleeing civil strife, political upheaval, and economic stagnation in Burma were living in remote camps in Thailand near the border as of May 2017
Illicit drugsa minor producer of opium, heroin, and marijuana; transit point for illicit heroin en route to the international drug market from Burma and Laos; eradication efforts have reduced the area of cannabis cultivation and shifted some production to neighboring countries; opium poppy cultivation has been reduced by eradication efforts; also a drug money-laundering center; minor role in methamphetamine production for regional consumption; major consumer of methamphetamine since the 1990s despite a series of government crackdowns
world's third largest producer of illicit opium with an estimated production in 2012 of 690 metric tons, an increase of 13% over 2011, and poppy cultivation in 2012 totaled 51,000 hectares, a 17% increase over 2011; production in the United Wa State Army's areas of greatest control remains low; Shan state is the source of 94.5% of Burma's poppy cultivation; lack of government will to take on major narcotrafficking groups and lack of serious commitment against money laundering continues to hinder the overall antidrug effort; major source of methamphetamine and heroin for regional consumption (2013)
Refugees and internally displaced personsrefugees (country of origin): 102,633 (Burma) (2016)
IDPs: 35,000 (resurgence in ethno-nationalist violence in south of country since 2004) (2016)
stateless persons: 487,741 (2016); note - about half of Thailand's northern hill tribe people do not have citizenship and make up the bulk of Thailand's stateless population; most lack documentation showing they or one of their parents were born in Thailand; children born to Burmese refugees are not eligible for Burmese or Thai citizenship and are stateless; most Chao Lay, maritime nomadic peoples, who travel from island to island in the Andaman Sea west of Thailand are also stateless; stateless Rohingya refugees from Burma are considered illegal migrants by Thai authorities and are detained in inhumane conditions or expelled; stateless persons are denied access to voting, property, education, employment, healthcare, and driving
note: Thai nationality was granted to more than 18,000 stateless persons in the last 3 years (2015)
"IDPs: 644,000 (government offensives against armed ethnic minority groups near its borders with China and Thailand, natural disasters, forced land evictions) (2016)
stateless persons: 925,939 (2016); note - Rohingya Muslims, living predominantly in Rakhine State, are Burma's main group of stateless people; the Burmese Government does not recognize the Rohingya as a ""national race"" and stripped them of their citizenship under the 1982 Citizenship Law, categorizing them as ""non-national"" or ""foreign residents""; under the Rakhine State Action Plan drafted in October 2014, the Rohingya must demonstrate their family has lived in Burma for at least 60 years to qualify for a lesser naturalized citizenship and the classification of Bengali or be put in detention camps and face deportation; native-born but non-indigenous people, such as Indians, are also stateless; the Burmese Government does not grant citizenship to children born outside of the country to Burmese parents who left the country illegally or fled persecution, such as those born in Thailand
note: estimate does not include stateless IDPs or stateless persons in IDP-like situations because they are included in estimates of IDPs (2016)
"
Trafficking in personscurrent situation: Thailand is a source, transit, and destination country for men, women, and children subjected to forced labor and sex trafficking; victims from Burma, Cambodia, Laos, China, Vietnam, Uzbekistan, and India, migrate to Thailand in search of jobs but are forced, coerced, or defrauded into labor in commercial fishing, fishing-related industries, factories, domestic work, street begging, or the sex trade; some Thai, Burmese, Cambodian, and Indonesian men forced to work on fishing boats are kept at sea for years; sex trafficking of adults and children from Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, and Burma remains a significant problem; Thailand is a transit country for victims from China, Vietnam, Bangladesh, and Burma subjected to sex trafficking and forced labor in Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Russia, South Korea, the US, and countries in Western Europe; Thai victims are also trafficked in North America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Middle East
tier rating: Tier 2 Watch List - Thailand does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking, and is not making significant efforts to do so; in 2014, authorities investigated, prosecuted, and convicted fewer traffickers and identified fewer victims; some cases of official complicity were investigated and prosecuted, but trafficking-related corruption continues to hinder progress in combatting trafficking; authorities’ efforts to screen for victims among vulnerable populations remained inadequate due to a poor understanding of trafficking indicators, a failure to recognize non-physical forms of coercion, and a shortage of language interpreters; the government passed new labor laws increasing the minimum age in the fishing industry to 18 years old, guaranteeing the minimum wage, and requiring work contracts, but weak law enforcement and poor coordination among regulatory agencies enabled exploitive labor practices to continue; the government increased efforts to raise public awareness to the dangers of human trafficking and to deny entry to foreign sex tourists (2015)
current situation: Burma is a source country for men, women, and children trafficked for the purpose of forced labor and for women and children subjected to sex trafficking; Burmese adult and child labor migrants travel to East Asia, the Middle East, South Asia, and the US, where men are forced to work in the fishing, manufacturing, forestry, and construction industries and women and girls are forced into prostitution, domestic servitude, or forced labor in the garment sector; some Burmese economic migrants and Rohingya asylum seekers have become forced laborers on Thai fishing boats; some military personnel and armed ethnic groups unlawfully conscript child soldiers or coerce adults and children into forced labor; domestically, adults and children from ethnic areas are vulnerable to forced labor on plantations and in mines, while children may also be subject to forced prostitution, domestic service, and begging
tier rating: Tier 2 Watch List – Burma does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking, but it is making significant efforts to do so; the government has a written plan that, if implemented, would constitute making a significant effort toward meeting the minimum standard for eliminating human trafficking; in 2014, law enforcement continued to investigate and prosecute cross-border trafficking offenses but did little to address domestic trafficking; no civilians or government officials were prosecuted or convicted for the recruitment of child soldiers, a serious problem that is hampered by corruption and the influence of the military; victim referral and protection services remained inadequate, especially for men, and left victims vulnerable to being re-trafficked; the government coordinated anti-trafficking programs as part of its five-year national action plan (2015)

Source: CIA Factbook