Thailand is speedily improving its logistics system in terms of laws and regulations in preparation for the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), with several agreements or MOUs already signed with other ASEAN members to reduce barriers in transport businesses.
As the emergence of AEC is approaching in less than 3 years, Thailand, as a center of this region, surrounded by Laos, Myanmar, Cambodia, and Malaysia, is at an advantage in the areas of logistics. Equipped with efficient land, water and air transportation systems, Thailand can easily become ASEAN’s logistics hub and distribute goods to other countries in the 10-member bloc and the world market.
However, in order for Thailand to achieve its target of being ASEAN’s hub, it will need cooperation from both the government and the private sector, especially in the areas of human resource development to accommodate logistics expansion. And even though more Thai educational institutions have been adding logistics management courses to their curriculum, there remains a need for more support from the government for this important field of study that is essential for the development of Thailand.
Regarding legal aspects of Thailand’s logistics improvement, the country, as an ASEAN member, has made several agreements with other member nations to ready itself for the AEC. These pacts include the Agreement on the Recognition of Domestic Driving Licenses, the Agreement on the Recognition of Commercial Vehicle Inspection Certificates for Goods Vehicles and Public Service Vehicles, the ASEAN Framework Agreement on the Facilitation of Goods in Transit, and the ASEAN Framework Agreement on Multimodal Transport.
But while Thailand has passed several laws regarding logistics, they appear to lack sufficient emphasis on environmental issues. This goes against the fact that many countries have been pursuing Green Logistics, with major economic powers already introduced laws to promote the environmentally-friendly concept at all stages, from production to distribution and logistics.
This means any other country that wishes to do business with them will have to adopt corresponding logistics policies to comply with their practices. Therefore, Thailand should make sure that all of its laws and regulations go in line with those implemented around the world, in order to further improve local businesses’ competitiveness, enable the economy to grow sustainably and tackle the environmental problems in the country.