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Thailand is a country bordered by ocean, sea and mountains and is home to approximately 69 million people, a largely Buddhist population. It is the only country in Southeast Asia to avoid colonization and has a rich history dating back to the establishment of the Thai Kingdom in the 14th century. Thousands of tourists flock to Thailand each year to see its natural beauty and ancient relics.

Thailand is a relatively newly industrialized country - from the 1970s until the early 1990s the poor were mostly agricultural workers in the rural areas. However as the economy shifted from an agrian economy to an industrialized economy, resources shifted to the industrial sector, reducing the demand for farm and agricultural workers.

The economic growth between the 1980s and 1990s has improved overall living conditions however the benefits of this national affluence have not been distributed equitably: 8% (est. over 5 million) of the population still lives below the poverty line, particularly communities in remote rural areas. Furthermore, Thailand has also been impacted by refugees fleeing from the conflict in its northern neighbour, Myanmar, seeking refuge in the northern regions of Thailand.

Sources: AusAID, Worldbank,,

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