Thailand’s advances in UN SDGs seen boosting investment competitiveness

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Thailand advancing 19 places from last year to rank 40th globally and first in ASEAN in the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Report will bolster the country’s competitiveness as more investors see sustainability performance as relevant to their decisions, said Thailand Board of Investment (BOI)’s chief.
According to the recently released report compiled by the New York-based Sustainable Development Solutions Network and Bertelsmann Stiftung, ranking how 162 countries are performing in their implementation of the 17 SDGs, Thailand scored 73 points in the SDG Index 2019. That places Thailand higher than the regional average score of 65.7 and ranked it ahead of other ASEAN countries. Vietnam was 54th, Singapore 66th, Malaysia 68th, the Philippines 97th, Indonesia 102nd, Myanmar 110th, Lao PDR 111th and Cambodia 112th.

“The notable progress Thailand has made in SDGs helps reinforce our competitiveness position,” said Ms Duangjai Asawachintachit, Secretary General of BOI. “The SDG indicators such as quality education, economic growth, work environment, energy and agriculture efficiency, and climate action have become fundamental factors in investment decisions.”

Thailand’s performance is most outstanding in the areas of poverty reduction, where it scored 100 points, quality education (88.7 points), affordable and clean energy (82.9 points), decent work and economic growth (80.2 points), sustainable cities and communities (83.0 points) and climate action (93.9 points).

Thailand’s achievement in SDGs is underpinned by the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy (SEP) which has been adopted as the core principle of the National Economic and Social Development Plan since 2002 and integrated in the 20-Year National Strategy Framework. Meanwhile, Thailand’s recent election as a member of the United Nations Economic and Social Council for the term 2020-2022 demonstrates the country’s strong commitment and active role in advancing social and development agendas on both the national and international fronts.

“Investment by both local and foreign businesses have a critical role to play in the realization of SDGs as they can generate growth, employment, productivity, knowledge and technology transfer,” Ms Duangjai said. “BOI as a government agency tasked to promote valuable investment in Thailand, can ensure international business of its support to identify opportunities and challenges in their contribution to SDGs.”

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