The United Nations works together with the Royal Thai Government and people of Thailand for over fifty years to support inclusive and sustainable development, based on national priorities and plans. The United Nations Country Team consists of 21 UN agencies who have specific programmes and activities being carried out in Thailand. Our work is supported by the invaluable partnerships we have with the Royal Thai Government, national stakeholders, civil society, academia, the private sector, donors and the media. We also work closely with the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia Pacific (ESCAP).
The UN in Thailand employs international and Thai nationals, whose skills, knowledge and experience - as well as dedication to the UN’s mission - are key to ensuring the resources of the UN are applied as effectively as possible to help Thailand’s aspiration to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. The spirit of the Sustainable Development Goals is captured in a single phrase: ‘to leave no one behind.’ This is the principle that guides everything that we in the UN family do in this country.
In this sense, the United Nations Country Team in Thailand signed the UN Partnership Framework or UNPAF 2017-2021 with the Royal Thai Government in July 2017. It is the document that describes the collective response of the UN system to national development priorities. The UNPAF 2017-2021 articulates outcomes (results to be achieved) for the next five years and UN agencies’ responsibilities that are agreed by the Government. The outcomes in the UNPAF are linked to the 12th National Economic and Social Development Plan for 2017-2021.
The UN is supporting the Government and the people of Thailand to address the COVID19 pandemic by strengthening governments public health services and capacity. To leave no one behind, the UN advocated for topping up of old age, child and disability grants and is supporting the government with real-time monitoring of gender-based violence and violence against children. To build back better, the UN undertook socio-economic, labour and industrial impact assessments. To promote solidarity, the UN is reaching over 21 million viewers to amplify risk communications, generate narratives to counter hate speech and promote mental wellness.
The UN supported the achievement of eliminating Hepatitis B in Thailand in 2019 ahead of the regional 2020 target. The UN contributed to successful malaria reduction by 77% from 2017 to 2019 at the community level, and the UN’s technical support to the intensive immunization campaign responded to the measles epidemic in the Deep South. The UN is supporting the Government in achieving its ambitious target to cut the rate of teenage pregnancies to 25 per 1,000 by 2026, as compared to the current rate of 50 per 1,000 teenage girls by contributing to reversing the current trend through policy advocacy and technical support.
The UN is promoting investment in low-carbon enterprises by supporting small and medium enterprises to adapt energy-efficient practices and use low carbon technologies. The UN supported action towards achieving reduction targets by improving the management of peatland ecosystems as carbon sinks, integrating low-carbon development plans, and demonstrating solutions in target cities, as well as building gender and social inclusion into the climate budgeting framework. Reductions totaled 14,000 tons of carbon emissions, more than 210,000 tons per year of solid waste was utilized, and 266,000 MWh of power generated.
The UN made inroads on inclusive migration policy and strategy by launching the “Thailand Migration Report”, a joint UN collaboration, which assessed the challenges faced by migrants as well as progress made in protection and inclusion to inform future policy. The report demonstrated the importance of the issue in Thailand, looking at social and economic dimensions and the role the UN in technical advice and advocacy.
Through the joint programme of the SDG Fund on Social Protection, the UN is providing integrated policy solutions for Thailand’s social protection system, supporting the Government to maximize the Child Support Grant, covering two million children under the age of six and by linking the grant to other social services, and is advocating for domestic workers, including migrants, by providing policy options to ensure a more effective coverage for them within the existing social security schemes.
The UN and the Government have developed a unique partnership through the Task Force on Non-Communicable Diseases, co-chaired by the Prime Minister and the Resident Coordinator, which combats the growing threats to health by introducing plain packaging for tobacco, addressing interference from tobacco, alcohol, air polluters and the food industry, increasing the tax on sugar-sweetened beverages, and simplifying the cigarette tax system.