The National Economic Development Plan is a Driving Force or the Developmentof Khon Kaen City

Prior to 1960 Khon Kaen, a city in north eastern Thailand, was just a small town. Modernization was confined only in and around the town center, where the market and government sector were located. There were only three main asphalt-paved roads. Electricity and tap water were available only in the center of town. The National Plan for Economics that was established during the 1960s enabled Khon Kaen to develop a high rate of city growth and enlargement. According to the policy, Khon Kaen was chosen to be the central city of development in the northeast region. The mega project was supported by the Central Government to build up a new Official Center in the northern part of the city while in the western part many Public Health Centers including a large provincial hospital were established. There were a total of 99 official sectors newly established at that time. The basic infrastructure was also improved, especially by the construction of Ubonratana Dam, a water reservoir which is located about 50km away from the city, with the main objectives of providing electricity and water supplies for the whole city. Moreover, roads were extended in every direction around Khon Kaen to connect with neighbouring provinces. One of the most important developments was the establishment of educational institutes, such as Khon Kaen University, Thai-German Technology College and Nursing College, etc. These helped to give the city a high growth rate as the center of regional government, transportation as well as education. The social policy outlined in the National Plan for Economics in 1993 emphasized that the educational standard for every citizen would be to finish at least high school level, and student loans were offered by the government to assist in this. This gave the opportunity to open up many private universities and colleges in Khon Kaen and it has been found that in 2007 there are up to 60,000 students in Khon Kaen City that has a registered population of only 128,687, therefore 50% of the inhabitants of the city are students. The presentation will aim to discuss in detail the various aspects of the National Plan for Economics that are a main driving force for city development of which Khon Kaen City is an interesting study case (do you mean: example??).

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