|Abstract : |
The Bangkok-Korat Railway is a first mainline route ever constructed in Thailand, then Siam. Thai people rather have a fond memory of it as a first step towards modernization at the end of the nineteenth century. A recent revisit unveils some disturbing facts that lead to a suspicion of budget misuse and it could be a milestone for a genesis of corruption in Thailand. The construction was substantially delayed and plagued by disputes between the Thai head of railway department who was a German- and the British contractor. Later, the legal lawsuit and the cancellation of contract- were followed, along with several unusual arbitrations and high profile negotiations. Finally, the railway department lost the case. Surprisingly, soon after the contract had been cancelled, the progress of construction was drastically improved. As a newly established railway department, its pace outperformed a veteran engineering company by large margins in various aspects. This raises the question regarding the necessity of having foreign contractor at the beginning if the department could have done it from the outset. Alternatively, why there was such a big delay when using the British contractor and the holdup disappeared right after the contract was cancelled. This paper makes way for further discoveries and analyses.
By : |
Dr. Supruet Thavornyutikarn , Lecturer, Faculty of Economics, Thammasat University, Bangkok, Thailand
Venue : |
5th Floor Meeting Room, Faculty of Economics, Thammasat University, Tha Prachan
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