In July 2020, the Digital Economy Promotion Agency (DEPA) of Thailand has announced an objective to transform 100 cities across the country into smart cities in two years, with the aim of improving the economy and the quality of life.
Cities in six provinces (Phuket, Chiang Mai, Khon Kaen, Chon Buri, Rayong and Chachoengsao) and Bangkok have begun participating to the modernization program. Other cities which want to join the scheme can submit proposals for evaluation and approval to the National Steering Committee on Smart City Development, chaired by the Deputy Prime Minister. Applications were opened in May and 39 cities had applied as of July 2020, including seven city municipalities, four town municipalities and one subdistrict municipality.
For approval the cities must meet five criteria: 1) have clear geographical boundaries and smart city goals; 2) have infrastructure investment and a development plan; 3) have a design for an open and secure city data platform; 4) provide smart city solutions; and 5) have a sustainable management model.
The characteristics of smart cities under the development program spans seven dimensions: economy, mobility, energy, living, people, governance and environment.
Approved cities can use the Smart City Thailand logo and are allowed to apply for investment privileges from Thailand’s Board of Investment.
(Sources: Bangkok Post, Vietnam Plus)