The East Coast: A Future Business And Leisure Hub For Thailand

Pattaya Bay - Thailand's East Coast
Pattaya and the East Coast are positioned for a boom in business and leisure on the back of the national government’s EEC Project. Photo by Sergey S. Dukachev.

The Ocean Marina Pattaya Boat Show highlights the best of Thailand’s east coast, showcasing its position as one of Asia’s leading seaside resort hubs with outstanding facilities and the capability to host large scale international events. This image is about to be enhanced further with the Thai government’s ambitious Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) Development Plan, which includes the Eastern High-Speed Railways Airport Link connecting Don Muang, Suvarnabhumi and U-Tapao international airports.

The EEC is a priority project on the national government’s agenda and covers the three eastern provinces of Chaochoengsao, Chonburi, and Rayong.

Another important development that is part of the EEC is the expansion of three key seaports: Phase III Laem Chabang, Phase III Map Ta Phut, and the Sattahip Commercial deep seaport. Recently, the State Railway Authority of Thailand announced the construction of a new double-track railway between Saraburi and Chachangsao, which will help facilitate the transfer of goods and products from Laem Chabang.

In addition to significant government investment in the transport infrastructure – roads, rail and air – the EEC region is positioned to welcome inbound international investment and already there is a lot of interest from overseas companies looking to invest in the region and locate offices and staff there. This in turn supports the economy of the area and will have positive knock-on effects to the supply chain and supporting businesses.

With an emphasis on innovation and digital development, the EEC is a flagship project for Thailand and offshoots are already being considered for other regions in the country.

The development of business in the eastern region will also provide a boost to the leisure industry. As more personnel locate to the east coast, leisure activities grow in demand, and as the transport infrastructure between Bangkok’s airports and the east coast improves, as well as expansion of U-Tapao International Airport, the number of domestic and international visitors is set to grow further.

Pattaya welcomed more than 14 million visitors in 2018 and with reigns as the second largest tourism destination outside of Bangkok. Improved access, infrastructure and hospitality facilities will support growth in Pattaya and along the east coast.