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How Many Expats Are Living In Thailand?


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#1 MAJIC

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Posted 2010-12-24 05:05:12

I realise that this question: "How many Expats are living in Thailand" "And how much do they add to the economy"

may be difficult questions to answer,but are there any official figures?

And even more difficult to estimate,How much they add to the Thai Economy.

But perhaps with the wealth of Knowledge on Tv,some answers or estimates may be forthcoming.

My apologies if these questions have been already been dealt with?

#2 chiangmaibruce

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Posted 2010-12-24 07:01:01

These questions have been asked before in Thaivisa but not really "dealt with" as the figures are not publicly available (well, that's the consensus anyway)

People, including myself, have contacted the relevant agencies but received no response. The closest available figures to what you are looking for are many years old.

If anyone does have access to these stats then please post here and/or PM me, thanks

#3 Ulysses G.

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Posted 2010-12-24 07:55:51

"How many Expats are living in Thailand" "And how much do they add to the economy"

Yes to both, but I haven't a clue as to how many and how much. :D

#4 NikhilBkk

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Posted 2010-12-24 09:08:53

Cannot comment on the exact amts but one thing is for sure, the amt is dwindling fast as more Professional expats are relocating to certain events like ttries like Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam. Also seeing atnew trend of expats moving to Indonesia, India and also China. If you were to observe memberships of actual expats at the various Chambers Of Commerce, you can see that those figures are declining and also if you were to observe certain recent events like Amcham's Independence Day Celebrations, Ploenchit Fair, The Bumrungrad Abbual Healthy Living Fair, The International Women's Club Bazaar, YWCA's Bazaar.......the number of expats certainly dropped. Just look at the ads in Thaivisa and you can see how many are selling their homes due to relocations.

There is however a slight increase of younger British Blokes coming in to find work and live in Thailand but not belonging to the Professional work brackets, most have lower eductaion brackets. There is also a huge amount of Chinese Malaysians and Singaporeans (who are usually labelled as Ah Bengs) coming into Thailand and settling here and indulging in nefarious activities. Most have little education.

#5 Beetlejuice

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Posted 2010-12-24 10:07:44

I think this is impossible to estimate.

There are the permanent residents. Those on pensions, business owners, employees or living on savings.

Then there are the part timers. Those that only stay in Thailand for short periods during a year. Offshore workers, live both in they're own countries but visit Thailand for a few months per year and those on short term work contracts.

And what about the farangs that are not entitled to be Thailand? How many are criminals, illegal workers, overstayers, constantly in and out the country trying to be inconspicuous doing whatever they are into and so on.

Until the Thai government creates a proper system of tagging and recording who is a tourist and who is an ex-pat, there is no way of differentiating between a tourist and an ex-pat resident.

As for adding to the economy; I can see the benefits of those who obtain they're incomes legally from abroad and spend their money in Thailand. The Thais gain from foreign income and the foreigner benefits from a better lifestyle at a cheaper rate. It is of mutual benefit to both parties and everyone's happy all round.

But I do not see how the farangs such as business owners or employees that acquire their incomes from Thailand actually benefit Thailand? They seem to take out more then they put in. Although business owners, if legal, claim that they are good for the Thai economy by creating employment for Thais and paying taxes, those that declare taxes of course, they are still gaining the benefits of much cheaper labor and paying much less tax then they would in the West, getting rich on the proceeds but not citizens, yet, enjoying a more prosperous lifestyle then the average Thai worker and even nationals in their own countries. So it appears they gain more then they put in.

Edited by Beetlejuice, 2010-12-24 10:11:24.


#6 Petbon

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Posted 2010-12-24 10:09:18

I've just learned that in the late 80s/early 90s quite a number of NZers (with degrees) escaped from highest unemployment ever there by coming here and to other Asian countries to earn money teaching English and live cheaply...I've met some of them now living on benefits in Auckland. They would've been earning and spending yet probably not paying any taxes/rates to contribute towards their use of services. Kiwi ingenuity?

#7 stander

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Posted 2010-12-24 10:21:17

I will start the ball rolling with a guesstimate of 350,000:00plus living here, any advance on that welcome.

Edited by stander, 2010-12-24 10:21:44.


#8 billd766

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Posted 2010-12-24 14:13:13

Cannot comment on the exact amts but one thing is for sure, the amt is dwindling fast as more Professional expats are relocating to certain events like ttries like Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam. Also seeing a new trend of expats moving to Indonesia, India and also China. If you were to observe memberships of actual expats at the various Chambers Of Commerce, you can see that those figures are declining and also if you were to observe certain recent events like Amcham's Independence Day Celebrations, Ploenchit Fair, The Bumrungrad Abbual Healthy Living Fair, The International Women's Club Bazaar, YWCA's Bazaar.......the number of expats certainly dropped. Just look at the ads in Thaivisa and you can see how many are selling their homes due to relocations.

There is however a slight increase of younger British Blokes coming in to find work and live in Thailand but not belonging to the Professional work brackets, most have lower eductaion brackets. There is also a huge amount of Chinese Malaysians and Singaporeans (who are usually labelled as Ah Bengs) coming into Thailand and settling here and indulging in nefarious activities. Most have little education.

I suppose it depends on how you define an expat.

I know quite a few expats living in Thailand very few of which live in Bangkok where most of the organisations you mention are based and none of the guys I know would ever go there.

What constitutes a professional expat in the way of education?

I certainly never went to college or university but I was a professional cellular engineer build mobile phone networks in over 20 countries in my time and worked up from a field engineer to regional manager so IMHO education has little to show for it.

I know in my time as a manager that when I had the choice of hiring an ex college man who has worked and knows what he is doing against a guy with a degree who has never worked the college guy gets the job every time.

At least younger Brits who are coming into the country are showing initiative and getting out to actually do something.

When I worked in Thailand from 1994 to 1997 my managers were always around at the international clubs in Bangkok and had no interest in the rest of Thailand which gave us field guys a whole country to play with and it was great. When they moved on to another country it was the same.

#9 colinscarr

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Posted 2010-12-24 14:31:05

About 3 years ago, the British Embassy reckoned there were 35000 Brits living long term in Thailand. That covers, retirees, English teachers, company managers on 2 - 3 year contracts etc.
Anyone want to extrapolate from that single data point?

#10 Chunky1

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Posted 2010-12-24 14:36:20

Cannot comment on the exact amts but one thing is for sure, the amt is dwindling fast as more Professional expats are relocating to certain events like ttries like Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam. Also seeing atnew trend of expats moving to Indonesia, India and also China. If you were to observe memberships of actual expats at the various Chambers Of Commerce, you can see that those figures are declining and also if you were to observe certain recent events like Amcham's Independence Day Celebrations, Ploenchit Fair, The Bumrungrad Abbual Healthy Living Fair, The International Women's Club Bazaar, YWCA's Bazaar.......the number of expats certainly dropped. Just look at the ads in Thaivisa and you can see how many are selling their homes due to relocations.

There is however a slight increase of younger British Blokes coming in to find work and live in Thailand but not belonging to the Professional work brackets, most have lower eductaion brackets. There is also a huge amount of Chinese Malaysians and Singaporeans (who are usually labelled as Ah Bengs) coming into Thailand and settling here and indulging in nefarious activities. Most have little education.

I definitely agree with regard to the age of the average expat. When i first got here 7 years ago, there really were not a lot of guys in their twenties and even guys in their thirties were a bit rarer. Now both appear to be in vast abundance. They also seem to date the same women as the guys in their 60's :bah:

#11 bkkjames

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Posted 2010-12-24 14:42:38


Cannot comment on the exact amts but one thing is for sure, the amt is dwindling fast as more Professional expats are relocating to certain events like ttries like Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam. Also seeing atnew trend of expats moving to Indonesia, India and also China. If you were to observe memberships of actual expats at the various Chambers Of Commerce, you can see that those figures are declining and also if you were to observe certain recent events like Amcham's Independence Day Celebrations, Ploenchit Fair, The Bumrungrad Abbual Healthy Living Fair, The International Women's Club Bazaar, YWCA's Bazaar.......the number of expats certainly dropped. Just look at the ads in Thaivisa and you can see how many are selling their homes due to relocations.

There is however a slight increase of younger British Blokes coming in to find work and live in Thailand but not belonging to the Professional work brackets, most have lower eductaion brackets. There is also a huge amount of Chinese Malaysians and Singaporeans (who are usually labelled as Ah Bengs) coming into Thailand and settling here and indulging in nefarious activities. Most have little education.

I definitely agree with regard to the age of the average expat. When i first got here 7 years ago, there really were not a lot of guys in their twenties and even guys in their thirties were a bit rarer. Now both appear to be in vast abundance. They also seem to date the same women as the guys in their 60's :bah:


so you dont like all the competition? :lol:

#12 GuestHouse

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Posted 2010-12-24 14:56:13

But I do not see how the farangs such as business owners or employees that acquire their incomes from Thailand actually benefit Thailand? They seem to take out more then they put in. Although business owners, if legal, claim that they are good for the Thai economy by creating employment for Thais and paying taxes, those that declare taxes of course, they are still gaining the benefits of much cheaper labor and paying much less tax then they would in the West, getting rich on the proceeds but not citizens, yet, enjoying a more prosperous lifestyle then the average Thai worker and even nationals in their own countries. So it appears they gain more then they put in.


Do you need a work permit to grind your axe?

#13 Ulysses G.

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Posted 2010-12-24 18:23:19

But I do not see how the farangs such as business owners or employees that acquire their incomes from Thailand actually benefit Thailand?



They pay their employees salaries - and often more than Thai employers.
They pay taxes.
They pay for food and lodging.
They pay for entertainment.
They buy things locally.
They often travel locally.
Etc., etc.

I'm sorry, but I do not understand your logic. :unsure:

#14 emsfeld

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Posted 2010-12-24 19:45:37

<Irony on>

Expats do not add to the Thai economy - they are the economy. Thailand would be doomed otherwise. The GDP generated by expats is just whatever the BoT publishes.

</Irony off>

#15 keestha

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Posted 2010-12-24 20:10:11

How many expats are living in Thailand?
The closest realistic answer you would get by asking all the embassies, they try to keep track of their citizens residing here.
Obviously they would only know about people who registered at their embassy, plus those who did not, but who are known to the embassy because they came for a new passport or other consular services at least once.

#16 Heng

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Posted 2010-12-24 22:12:27

'Not feeling appreciated' is a common theme in these threads.

:)

#17 Jingthing

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Posted 2010-12-24 22:17:19

It is not known. Be happy it is not known. If it was known, you can bet some xenophobes with power would conclude the number is TOO HIGH.

Next ...

#18 Deeral

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Posted 2010-12-24 22:28:56

Many expats - especially the "retirees" - certainly overestimate their value to the economy.

Hey may bring in some money but their presence can be disruptive rather than beneficial.

When you look at the amount of money and then relate that to a population of over 60 million and a comparatively wealthy economy - it is a drop in the ocean

Furthermore they put a strain on bureaucracy, police and health care with their disruptive behavior and drinking and ensuing poor health.
THe national health care system is grossly understaffed and many doctors are drawn into private health which is patronized by the wealthy and the (insured) foreigners
any "boom" in the property market serves no advantage to locals who simply can no longer afford to buy houses.

and as for the "Costa Del Crime" types - well their influence is appalling

Prostitution, theft, drugs etc are all given a boost by their presence.


(As for "Trickle-Down" - that is very reminiscent of the sort of thing that occurs when the proponents of this erroneous concept have a moment to themselves)

Edited by Deeral, 2010-12-24 22:32:33.


#19 transam

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Posted 2010-12-24 22:34:11

Many expats - especially the "retirees" - certainly overestimate their value to the economy.

Hey may bring in some money but their presence can be disruptive rather than beneficial.

When you look at the amount of money and then relate that to a population of over 60 million and a comparatively wealthy economy - it is a drop in the ocean

Furthermore they put a strain on bureaucracy, police and health care with their disruptive behavior and drinking and ensuing poor health.
THe national health care system is grossly understaffed and many doctors are drawn into private health which is patronized by the wealthy and the (insured) foreigners
any "boom" in the property market serves no advantage to locals who simply can no longer afford to buy houses.

and as for the "Costa Del Crime" types - well their influence is appalling

Prostitution, theft, drugs etc are all given a boost by their presence.


Are you still here.

God you must live a very sad life with your negative thoughts about everything. Chill out, life isn't as long as you think. :(

#20 TAWP

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Posted 2010-12-24 22:43:22


But I do not see how the farangs such as business owners or employees that acquire their incomes from Thailand actually benefit Thailand? They seem to take out more then they put in. Although business owners, if legal, claim that they are good for the Thai economy by creating employment for Thais and paying taxes, those that declare taxes of course, they are still gaining the benefits of much cheaper labor and paying much less tax then they would in the West, getting rich on the proceeds but not citizens, yet, enjoying a more prosperous lifestyle then the average Thai worker and even nationals in their own countries. So it appears they gain more then they put in.


Do you need a work permit to grind your axe?


No, but he might need an Education VISA to go back to school...

#21 wolf5370

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Posted 2010-12-25 00:24:16

It shouldn't be difficult to calculate the legal expats here - the government would have a list of out visa's and entry permits/extensions of stay - so they should know how many of each type of expat from each country are here at any point. Illegal resident tourists are a different matter, but then the same can be said for any country pretty much (excepting those that no one in their right mind would emigrate to legally or otherwise).
This would also yield age profiling and even (assuming addresses from reporting/arrivals card etc and financial statements is mostly true) geographical clustering and finiancial clustering. They have a lot of info about us - I think they just might be too frightened of seeing (or maybe publishing) the results - what would they do without a scapegoat if the truth was known!

This, of course, is using long stay visa/extension of a foreign national being active as the definition of expat.



#22 Chunky1

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Posted 2010-12-25 00:29:34

The TTWA is one of the biggest proponents and beneficiaries of a strong UK farang presense in Thailand. The rest of the country appears indifferent.














*Tattooed Thai Women Association

#23 wolf5370

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Posted 2010-12-25 00:55:50

Many expats - especially the "retirees" - certainly overestimate their value to the economy.

Hey may bring in some money but their presence can be disruptive rather than beneficial.

When you look at the amount of money and then relate that to a population of over 60 million and a comparatively wealthy economy - it is a drop in the ocean

Furthermore they put a strain on bureaucracy, police and health care with their disruptive behavior and drinking and ensuing poor health.
THe national health care system is grossly understaffed and many doctors are drawn into private health which is patronized by the wealthy and the (insured) foreigners
any "boom" in the property market serves no advantage to locals who simply can no longer afford to buy houses.

and as for the "Costa Del Crime" types - well their influence is appalling

Prostitution, theft, drugs etc are all given a boost by their presence.


(As for "Trickle-Down" - that is very reminiscent of the sort of thing that occurs when the proponents of this erroneous concept have a moment to themselves)


Are you in Thailand? When my daughter needed to go to hospital earlier this year (on insurance) she went to a private room in a private hospital - many rooms were empty and the doctor came to see her twice a day (the nurses station was next door and came in every half hour - I stayed also - there were more nurses than patients on the ward). Most Thais on the "National Health Syatem" (30 baht medical????) go see the Dr get a pill/jab/stitch and go home - without private patients paid for via personal wealth or insuranmce (wealthy Thais and foreigners/tourists) the hospitals could not afford to subscribe to the 30 baht scheme and would quickly fail.

Not sure I have seen that many retirees drinking and behaving in a disruptive manor - or expats for that - seems to me to be mostly the tourists that fall into this class - oh and the drunk Thai yobs too of course. Though, of course, the tourists put NO strain on the health service as they are NOT covered by it. Police earn far more from foreigners in extorsion than the foreigners cause the police to cost the state. Lets face it there are far too many cops in this country and most are lazy, useless and doing pointless jobs that should not be jobs for the BiB (like crossing guards at school times, bank security, and so on).

Are you so naive that you believe that Thai Drs go private because of expats? Hospitals here are private businesses (even if they are government funded) and ALL Drs are private. They are paid by the hospital. Again if it was not for the tourists, wealthy Thais and expats that can afford to pay (insurance or fees) then the hospitals would have to close because 30 baht scheme is a loss maker for the hospitals - and these Drs would be in the USA, UK or other country earning ten times the salary they do here - is that a better solution?

Expats and tourists can no own land - so any boom in the property market is caused by wealthy Thais and the easy availability of credit to Thais here. If this was of real concern more investigation into shanti town fires just before new construction projects would be ordered - it ain't the expats playing with matches you know.

If you think expats (or even tourists) caused prostitution here you really have no idea - for every hooker on a tourist arm, you can find a score that only service Thais. Look in Thai prisons and see what percentage of drug dealers, traffickers and users are Thais compared to expats or tourists and see where the problem is - Thai tuktuk/taxi/lorry drivers have been taking yaabaa for years to keep themselves awake to keep their hours up. 15 years ago 75% of the world's heroine came via Thailand, if that was all expats, then they sure got wasted a lot! Indeed as this thread is about expats, we can take tourists out of the picture, how many drug trafficking/dealing expats are there compared to Thais?

"As for "Trickle-Down" - that is very reminiscent of the sort of thing that occurs when the proponents of this erroneous concept have a moment to themselves" - other than getting the gibberish award for vernacular hyperbole, what is the point of this statement. It means nothing and has no arguement attached. The concept of trickle-down with respect to money coming into a country is well documented and known - this is why countries all over the world try to encourage foriegn currency into their ecconomies. If you know different, put forward your conjecture.

#24 wolf5370

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Posted 2010-12-25 01:02:23

The TTWA is one of the biggest proponents and beneficiaries of a strong UK farang presense in Thailand. The rest of the country appears indifferent.














*Tattooed Thai Women Association


Ah got your comment at the bottom - had me scratching my head for a while - Why does the Thai Textile Weavers Association benefit from UK expats???? :lol:

#25 MAJIC

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Posted 2010-12-25 05:15:51

I wasn't expecting instant answers to my Posting,they are very difficult questions especially with no official figures(as far as i'm aware of?)

As far as the financial benefit to Thailand of Farang Expats here is concerned,some would be as follows:
.


1.Improvement of their Housing Stock,which includes Building your own/Buying a new one,and improving one already in existance.
2.Businesses opened by Farangs (Taxes,Fees,Documentation etc)
3.Creating Employment for Thais
4.The Huge Grey Economy (Enough said)
5.Family Care,which includes Spouse and Extended Families
6.Everyday purchases
7.New Vehicle Purchases in particular,paid in cash.
8.Investments
9.Travel outlays (sightseeing the Country) and visits back to Country of origin.
10.Income from one's own Country,spent in Thailand
11.Visa Fees,Driving Licences etc
12.Private Medical Care
13 Legal Fees
14.Banking Fees

Some of these benefits to Thailand, will be crossing one and other,

but i'm sure some new ones can be added to the above list



Many thanks those that have tried to shed some light on the subject,and please continue with your inputs,and perhaps a broader picture may eventually emerge?

Happy Christmas & New Year to all at Thai Visa.

May you all get what you most wish for!.........................................................................................................................................Happiness?

Edited by MAJIC, 2010-12-25 05:16:36.






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