October 28, 2021
Thailand, officially the Kingdom of Thailand (Thai: , Thai pronunciation: [raːt̚˥˩.t͡ɕʰa˦˥.ʔaː˧.naː˧.t͡ɕak̚˨˩.tʰaj˧]) pronounced Rātcha-āṇāchạk Thai, Rāja-ādnyācạkra Thai; or Prathēt Thai, Pradēsa Thai), or Mueang Thai (pronounced: "meng-thai", the same as the English version, meaning "Thailand"), is a country in Southeast Asia bordered by Laos and Cambodia to the east, Malaysia and the Gulf. Siam to the south, and Myanmar and the Andaman Sea to the west. The Kingdom of Thailand was known as Siam until May 11, 1949. The word "Thai" (ไทย) means "freedom" in Thai, but can also refer to the Thai tribe, thus causing the name Siam to still be used among Thai citizens, especially the Chinese minority. and America. Thai people migrated from southwest China to mainland Southeast Asia over the centuries. The earliest known reference to their presence in the region relates to the exile of the Siamese in 12th-century inscriptions on the Khmer temple complex of Angkor Wat in Cambodia calling them "fakes" or "old wars". The area was once ruled by various Indian state governments such as the Mon, Khmer Empire, and Malay states, competing with countries such as Thailand's Ngoenyang, Sukhothai, Chiang Mai, Lan Na and Ayutthaya kingdoms as well. Europeans arrived in the 16th century, starting with a Portuguese diplomatic mission to Ayutthaya in 1511. The following centuries saw various European colonial powers occupy territories in IndoChina, where Thailand lost most of its territory to the French and British but remains the only one. Southeast Asian countries that survived the occupation. Since the reign of King Rama IV in the mid-19th century, Thailand has campaigned to modernize the country according to Western standards. This led to the transition from absolute monarchy to constitutional monarchy in 1932. But the next 60 years saw military and democratic rule change, with the most recent coup in May 2014. Thailand is a founding member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and remains a key ally of the United States. Despite relatively sporadic changes in leadership, it is considered a regional power in Southeast Asia and a medium power in global affairs. With a high level of human development, the second largest economy in Southeast Asia, and the 20th largest by GDP, Thailand is classified as a newly industrialized economy; manufacturing, agriculture, and tourism are the main sectors of the economy.