Thailand50 - Facts At A Glance

Thailand

Known as Siam until 1949, occupies an area of about 518,000 sq. miles bordering Burma, Laos, Cambodia and Malaysia. With a population of approximately 72 million, it is one of the few countries in the Far East that has never been colonized.

Thailand has been independent Kingdom since 1238. Her sometimes tempestuous earlier history saw the assimilation of many PoW's from neighboring countries, regarded as invaluable human resources, into Thai society. Thus, people inhabiting Thailand today share a rich ethnic diversity-mainly Thai, Mon, Khmer, Burmese, Malay, Laotian, Persian and Indian stock.

Ruler

The present Monarch, His Majesty King Bhumipol Adulyadej The Great (Rama IX), (1946), is a constitutional monarch who exercises power as Head of State. Her Majesty the Queen, His Royal Highness the Crown Prince and Their Royal Highnesses the Princesses Daughters, also play active roles assisting His Majesty the King in his devoted service to the people's welfare and national development.

Land area

197,595 sq mi (511,771 sq km); total area: 198,456 sq mi (514,000 sq km)

Population

64,631,595 (growth rate: 0.7%); birth rate: 13.9/1000; infant mortality rate: 19.5/1000; life expectancy: 72.2; density per sq mi: 327

Capital and largest city

Bangkok, 7,320,174 (city proper)

Languages

Thai (Siamese), English (secondary language of the elite), ethnic and regional dialects

Ethnicity/race

Thai 75%, Chinese 14%, other 11%

Religions

The state religion is Thiravada Buddhism (93%) although there are also Muslims (3%) and Christians (2%)

Literacy rate

96%

Ports and harbors

Bangkok, Laem Chabang, Pattani, Phuket, Sattahip, Si Racha, Songkhla. Airports: 111

Language

The national language both written and spoken is Thai. It is a tonal Language, similar to Chinese. English is widely understood in the cities.

Climate

Thailand has three seasons. The hot season lasts March to May. This is followed by the rainy season which runs through until October. The cool season is the most pleasant and lasts from November until February. Rainy season is starting from June to October.

Government and Administration

Bicameral parliamentary system of government with a 100-seat appointed Senate and an elected of Representatives with 240 seats.

Currency

Currency 1 Baht = 100 Stang (See Exchange rate)
Coins: 1, 5 and 10
Stang: 25 and 50
Banknotes: 20, 50, 100, 500 and 1,000

Regional Thailand has four parts, they are North, Northeast, Central and South

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