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Evaluating the Effectiveness of GMS Economic Corridors: Why is There More Focus on the Bangkok-Hanoi Road than the East-West Corridor?

Discussion Papers


October 2007


Since the inauguration of the Greater Mekong Sub-region (GMS) Economic Cooperation Program in 1992, road infrastructure projects have played a very important role. Their economic significance, especially, has become a focal point after the introduction of the concept of the three economic corridors in 1998: the East-West Economic Corridor; the North-South Economic Corridor; and the Southern Economic Corridor (Figure 1). The completion of the Second International Mekong Bridge between Mukdahan, Thailand and Savannakhet, Laos was an epoch-making event in the development of the East-West Economic Corridor. The business community, however, has paid more attention to the Bangkok-Hanoi Road than the East-West Economic Corridor. This study examines the reasons why the former has received more focus than the latter, by using criteria such as population density and the economic scale at a provincial or state level. Thereafter, the effectiveness of other economic corridors is examined, by applying the same criteria.

Keywords: Transportation, Gravity, Population, Regional Income
JEL classification: R40, R58, M31

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Please note that discussion papers are works in various stages of progress and most have not been edited and proofread and may contain errors of fact or judgment. Revised versions of these papers may subsequently appear in more formal publication series. The views expressed in this publication are those of the author(s). The IDE does not guarantee the accuracy of the data included and accepts no responsibility for any consequences arising from its use.