Thailand is Southeast Asia’s industrial and petrochemical powerhouse, and energy demand is growing rapidly across all sectors of the economy. Until recently, the Thai energy economy was built squarely upon a foundation of natural gas produced domestically and imported via pipeline from neighbouring Myanmar. However, domestic gas reserves are running dry, while Myanmar’s supply has become less certain due to political risks. Instead, Thailand has increasingly turned to LNG as a replacement, subjecting the economy to cost pressures and global price volatility.
Once a renewables leader in the region, Thailand has seen wind and solar developments stall in recent years in favour of larger, riskier combined-cycle LNG-fired power plants. Now, fuel price volatility and a growing power overcapacity burden threaten to increase electricity and fuel costs for households and businesses, muddying the outlook for the country’s economic trajectory.