SEC bill to launch 1-trillion-baht Land Bridge project by 2026

Photo courtesy of Bangkok Post

The draft of the Southern Economic Corridor (SEC) bill is on track to be submitted to the Cabinet by the end of September, aiming to kickstart the 1-trillion-baht Land Bridge megaproject in 2026, Transport Minister Suriya Jungrungreangkit announced yesterday.

The blueprint for the project is currently being adjusted to align with the expectations of foreign investors and locals. These adjustments are set to be finalised by the third quarter.

The Office of Transport and Traffic Policy and Planning (OTP) forwarded the draft to the ministry for review. Following this, the draft will be presented to the Special Economic Zone policy committee for further discussion.

The Cabinet is expected to review the bill in September, with plans to move it to Parliament for endorsement by April next year.

The megaproject’s environmental impact assessment (EIA), a crucial element for the seaports’ development plan, is anticipated to be completed and submitted to the Office of Natural Resources and Environmental Policy and Planning (ONEP) sometime next year.

A Request for Proposal (RFP) is also being prepared to invite investors to join the bidding process. The list of approved investors will be finalised by the third quarter of next year, with contract signing expected in early 2026.

Construction will be carried out in three phases: the first phase is set to begin in 2026 and conclude by the end of 2030, the second phase will start in 2031 and finish by 2034, and the final phase will commence in 2035 and be completed by 2036.

The project is estimated to cost around 1 trillion baht, with 330 billion baht earmarked for the construction of Ranong Port, 305 billion baht for Chumphon Port, and 358 billion baht for supporting logistical infrastructure, including railways and motorways.

Investors’ financial internal rate of return (FIRR) is projected at 8.62%.

According to OTP’s report, citing figures from the National Economic and Social Development Council (NESDC), the project is expected to elevate the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) annual growth rate from 4% to 5.5%, reported Bangkok Post.

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Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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