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This essay reviews the traumatic experience of Thailand ' s economy during 1997-1999, describes the policy response, and draws lessons for the future. Whereas the country ' s economic performance until 1996, was exemplary within the developing world - consistent growing, high gross domestic product rates, exports expansion, and in-flow of foreign capital - the financial downturn of 1997 gave way to a deep economic recession, which diminished asset values, and threatened to unleash large-scale unemployment. The book analyzes the crisis, highlighting the tension, and controversy that surrounded structural reform, and, describes the ongoing legal, regulatory, and institutional reforms - all designed to ensure prudent decision-making by Thai bankers, and corporations. The book concludes with an outline of the steps needed to complete the reform program, in a way that will consolidate the fragile economic recovery, and allow sustained growth. The economic history of the crisis - highlighted in Figure 1-1 - shows the movements of selected indicators of the economy, during this volatile period.

Publisher: World Bank

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