The Economic And Social Development Plan

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According to FAO Corporate (no date), since the First National Economic and Social Development Plan began in 1961, emphasis has been on economic development. Natural resources and human capital expanded the production base, employment opportunities and national income. These guidelines were appropriate for and consistent with the country 's situation in the early period of national development because of abundant natural resources and an excess labour supply, especially in the agricultural sector. Thailand 's production and exports, therefore, were attributed largely to these comparative advantages. Some problems are due to planning focusing on income generation, regardless of the cost to natural resources, the environment and society. Human resources were seen as production inputs serving the labour market; less attention was given to human potential, intellectual capability and local ways of life. Emphasis was on foreign technology transfer, rather than research and development (R&D) to upgrade existing wisdom (ibid). To generate national development guideline ideas and recommendations for the Eighth Plan, an unusual planning opportunity was organised in 1998, a think tank seminar, "Generating ideas for the Eighth Plan" at Marukhataiyawan Palace in Petchaburi. It joined academics, philosophers, mass media and NGOs who reflected on Thailand 's future: envisioning a self-sufficient, free, just, merciful, compassionate society respecting human rights; in which people are
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