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Tailandia

The ILO has many years of collaboration with the Government of Thailand. Important collaborations were developed with various Government institutions to, amongst others, promote the adoption of Labour-Based Construction Technologies. The 1997 Asian Economic Crisis put a temporary break on the rapid economic growth, and subsequent the employment prospects became less bright. As a response, ASIST-AP set-up various collaborations with the Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare, several of their departments and various Universities.

The Eighth National Development Plan initiated the process of decentralization of central governmental administrative responsibilities to local authorities. In relation to this, the Technical Training Institute (TTI) of the Public Works Department (PWD) of the Ministry of Interior (MoI) of Thailand started with a training programme for all 6747 technicians in the local governance structure, the Tambon Administrative Offices (TAO). For this purpose, ASIST-AP developed in collaboration with the Thammasat University Guidelines for Local Planning, Appropriate Technology and Employment for Community Development in the Kingdom of Thailand

After a training assessment in December 2001 it was concluded that a concerted is needed effort to develop a capacity at Tambol level to apply local level planning, and better include small scale contractors in the execution of infrastructure works. As a result, and in collaboration with the Department of Local Administration (DOLA), the Public Work Department Technical Training Institute (PWD/TTI), the Prince Damrong Rajanuphab Institute of Research and Development of the Ministry of Interior (MoI), the Chiengmai University and the Khon Kaen University, ASIST-AP developed the current project titled "Strengthening Local Capacity for Sustainable Rural Infrastructure Development for Poverty Reduction in Thailand".

Introduction

The ILO has many years of collaboration with the Government of Thailand. Thailand ratified the ILO's Employment Policy Convention (No. 122) in 1969, and due to its rapid growth reached virtual full employment by the early 1990s ILO Country Employment Review 2000. Nevertheless important collaborations were developed with various Government institutions to, amongst others, promote the adoption of Labour-Based Construction Technologies, particularly for the less fortunate rural area's. This is exemplified by the 16 Training Videos for Labour Based Road Construction and Maintenance that were produced in 1991, and have been reprinted on Video CD in 2001 in both Thai and English language.

The 1997 Asian Economic Crisis put a temporary break on the rapid economic growth, and subsequent the employment prospects became less bright. As a response, ASIST-AP set-up various collaborations with the Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare, several of their departments and various Universities. Further, ASIST-AP linked to several donor projects that were being implemented, such as the Miyazawa Initiative of the Japanese Government that promoted the labour based construction of Bamboo reinforced concrete roads, and the WorldBank Social Investment Programme. This latter programme, through their Social Fund Office (SOFO), worked with the Ministry of Interior on the creation of employment opportunities and improving infrastructure and services in rural area's.

ASIST-AP provided technical advice and training to promote the wider application of labour based technology in 1998 and 1999. Also, in 1999 a unit cost study of different projects of the Social Funds Office was conducted, giving the scientific underpinnings of the improvements that could be made by applying different deigns that would increase the quality of the works, reduce the costs of the works, and use more labour and local inputs. It showed that especially in roads-construction, bridges and irrigation channels enormous opportunities lie to reduce costs when applying improved designs of constructions, without loss of quality or timing, while generating more employment. Another study was undertaken after the unit costs of small private contractors, showing some restrains the small contractors are facing and the needs for training in order to stimulate the emergence of local small scale contracting capacity.

Decentralisation

The Eighth National Development Plan initiated the process of decentralization of central governmental administrative responsibilities to local authorities. In relation to this, the Technical Training Institute (TTI) of the Public Works Department (PWD) of the Ministry of Interior (MoI) of Thailand started with a training programme for all 6747 technicians in the local governance structure, the Tambon Administrative Offices (TAO). For this purpose, ASIST-AP developed in collaboration with the Thammasat University a Guideline for Local Planning, Appropriate Technology and Employment for Community Development in the Kingdom of Thailand in 1999/2000.

In December 2000, 75 trainers were trained in the use of this guideline for the conduction of courses for around 3500 officers. In conjunction, the Ninth National Development Plan (October 2001) which was set with the aim to reduce poverty to less than 10% in five years, promote local development and create 300,000 jobs annually, reinforced the importance of the Tambon Administrative Organisation in the decentralisation process. The Tambon Administrative Offices (TAO) were instituted with the authority to direct and oversee development activities in their jurisdiction through their local offices. Since a large number of Tambons are still lacking adequate infrastructure, it is commonly found that a major portion of the TAO budgets is spent on basic infrastructure such as roads, bridges, water supply systems, etc. The capacity to efficiently plan and implement infrastructure projects at local level is therefore vital for sustaining the development of the Tambons.

In order to improve and update the guidelines, to asses the organizational set-up and to explore ways to further promote the adoption of the concepts described in them, ASIST-AP evaluated the first cluster of training sessions. After an evaluation of the training and assessment of potentials for further collaboration, a complete revision of the guideline was deemed necessary. The revised version was developed with technical inputs from advisers from Khon Kaen University and Changmai University, and took into account comments from trainees on the former edition. The focus shifted from the theoretical level towards the current practises of local level planning and labour based technology at local level, and additions or improvements that could be made. As a complement, the first and introductory Video CD of the training modules on Labour Based Road Construction and Maintenance were included in the 3500 copies of the guidelines, while the complete set of Video CDs was made available to all 75 provincial offices in Thailand for reference purposes.

During a training assessment in December 2001, particular attention was drawn to the following facts:

  • Although the guidelines as currently used by the TTI are well addressing the issue of local planning in general terms, the actual adoption and application of the concept of Local Level Planning requires a much more profound approach. The local level planning tools will need to be adapted to complement the existing planning system, and will need to be focussed on the circumstances prevailing in Thailand. This requires an understanding of the current planning practices based on research, field testing, and discussions with stakeholders. Only in such a concerted effort can an appropriate planning process be finalized, and training materials developed for replication on a larger scale in a training programme.
  • Most of the infrastructure works under the responsibility of the TAO's are of relatively small scale as compared to central government projects, and require the application of simple construction technologies. The concept of labour-based construction technologies often can be favorably applied, and if the infrastructure projects are carefully planned and properly implemented, the effects on employment generation could be significant. As a small size organizational unit, most TAOs best should contract out their infrastructure projects to small scale contractors and not use force-account procedures. Further, small-scale contractors use to make up a large part (90%) of the total number of contractors in Thailand, but their number decreased from 11730 (1996) to 3250 (1999) due to the crisis (ILO/ASIST-AP study 1999). However, in the public construction sector, small-scale contractors mainly operate as sub-contractors to large construction firms. Lacking contract management experience is often mentioned as a major drawback that prevents the small-scale contractors to perform efficiently when directly engaged by the TAO's. Furthermore, complicated government contracting procedures similar to those used in large-scale construction are being applied to small-scale construction, thus further complicating the situation. In addition TAO's often face various problems resulting in sub-standard work quality, delays in project delivery, etc. A poor contract management system and the inefficiency of the contractors involved have been accepted as key factors contributing to the problems.

From the above it was concluded that a concerted is needed effort to develop a capacity at Tambol level to apply local level planning, and better include small scale contractors in the execution of infrastructure works.

Country Strategy

The overall objective of ASIST-AP is to support the Thai Government in building local capacity at Tambol level to effectively apply local resource based and employment generating methods in decentralized infrastructure works. In collaboration with the Department of Local Administration (DOLA), the Public Work Department Technical Training Institute (PWD/TTI), the Prince Damrong Rajanuphab Institute of Research and Development of the Ministry of Interior (MoI), the Chiengmai University and the Khon Kaen University, ASIST-AP has developed a project to reach this objective by following activities:

  • Support the adoption of an improved local level planning system and seek endorsement for its application nationwide by the National Government. This involves (i) research after the existing, and (ii) development of an improved local level planning system (through demonstration projects at local level in selected Tambons).
  • Support the adoption of an improved contract managment system and seek endorsement by the National Government. This involves research after the existing, and development of an improved contract mangement system, as well as the development and expansion of this contract management system through demonstration projects at local level in prototype Tambons.
  • Support to the institutionalisation of contract mangement training for both local officers and small scale contractors. Institute of the Public Works Department.
  • Support to the institutionalisation of training for local officers. in Integrated Rural Accessibility Planning.

Approach

ILO/ASIST-AP would like to be of assistance to the current decentralization process towards the Tambon Administrative Organisation, and therefore has set-up a collaborations with the various departments and divisions of the Ministry of Interior involved, as well as with the regional universities of Chiengmai and Khon Kaen.


In order to maximize the capacity building effect, a specially assigned TAO task group will be soon set-up to work at committee level with national consultants from universities engaged by ILO. Also at field level, both DOLA and PWD personnel will be requested to give general assistance in the form of short-term assignments on an occasional basis.

ILO/ASIST sees demonstration at TAO level as an effective way of show the appropriateness of the concepts advocated. Existing planning procedures will be evaluated through reviewing available planning documents, interviewing selected TAO and DOLA personnel, and participating in the actual planning sessions of two selected prototype TAOs. DOLA will request two prototype TAOs in Changmai province and Khon Kaen province for their participation in these case studies. Further assistance to the national consultants will also be provided by DOLA.

Existing contract administration procedures will be evaluated through reviewing existing contract documents and by monitoring actual construction implementation in the field. Two Bamboo Reinforced Concrete Pavement (BRCP) construction projects under the Special Economic Stimulation Budget of the RRD will be selected for case studies and will receive technical advice.

Information on the existing contract administrative systems, as well as the training needs on the side of the contractors will be collected through interviews and questionnaires. These questionnaires will be issued to three target groups: the owners of small construction firms, the engineers/technicians employed by small construction firms, and the engineers/technicians of government departments supervising infrastructure works.

More detailed information shall be obtained by interviewing smaller samples of the same target groups, and PWD staff at field level. Students from the regional universities shall assist in the process of distributing and collecting questionnaires and also in conducting interviews.

Selected regional universities will participate as facilitators and as instructors in the above-mentioned processes. This will evolve into a general collaboration agreement with regional universities for their long-term involvement in further Training, Research and Development activities. The universities should be encouraged to play an important role in conducting the training and also in future fine-tuning of the training system as the contractor needs change.

Más información

  • Planning and Implementing Local Infrastructure Works, Guidelines for Tambon Administrations - PDF 1,813 Kb
    ILO ASIST Asia Pacific, 2004
  • Small Scale Contracting, Strengthening Local Capacity for Sustainable Rural Infrastructure in Thailand - PDF 4,193 Kb
    Aniruth Thongchai, 2004
  • Advisory Report on Further Involvement ASIST-AP - PDF 153 Kb
    Aniruth Thongchai, 2002

 

 

 
Puesto al día: 24.11.2006 ^ arriba