U.S. think tank cites Thai progress in economic freedom

American conservative think tank, The Heritage Foundation, praised Thailand’s “remarkable progress” in expanding economic freedom and ranked the Kingdom 9thin the Asia-Pacific region in its annual Economic Freedom Index.

The Foundation gave Thailand a business freedom index score of 85.3 out of 100. This increased the country’s overall score for 2021 to 69.7, a 0.3 percentage point rise. The Kingdom also achieved a score of 80 in trade freedom.

In all, Thailand ranked 3rd among the ten countries of ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations), 9th in the Asia-Pacific region, and 42nd in the world in the perennial index. The Foundation noted that this year Thailand achieved its highest overall score since the think tank began publishing its Economic Freedom Index in conjunction with the Wall Street Journal in 1995.

The Heritage Foundation came to prominence during the presidency of Ronald Reagan in the 1980s. It conducts and publishes public policy research and advocates for limited government, free enterprise, individual freedom and “American values.”

The report accompanying the index said that in Thailand, “to facilitate greater foreign investment, measures such as abolishing regulations on minimum capital for foreign firms have been taken, but foreign ownership in some sectors remains capped. The financial system has undergone restructuring, and the stock exchange is active and open to foreign investors.”

Photo courtesy of  https://www.heritage.org/index/country/thailand