Thailand Circular Economy Ecosystem Highlight
Covid-19 has transformed the global and Thailand economy. It presents a timely opportunity for both the public and private sectors to build a new economy that is more sustainable, socially, environmentally, and economically. Thailand is well-positioned in the global circular economy movement. Thailand has developed a strong Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) & Materials Flow Analysis (MFA) expertise and is among the leading countries in Asia. For the past 10 years, Thailand has built the Thailand National Life Cycle Inventory Database covering most of the relevant industry sectors, including agriculture & food, building & construction, packaging, and textile.
Thailand GHG Management Organization (TGO) manages the Carbon Footprint (CF) labeling for both products and organizations. Thailand (represented by TISI supported by industry committee members) is also an active member of ISO/TC323 on Circular Economy. Various sustainability network organizations have been active in promoting eco-product and sustainable consumption and production for over 10 years. Thailand Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP) Network was launched in 2019
Private sectors have been active in building a circular business from start-ups, SMEs to large corporations. Especially in the past 2-3 years, Thailand’s circular economy development in the private sector is picking up momentum, especially in Agriculture & Food, Textile & Fashion, Packaging, and Building & Environment. Circularity practices towards sustainability are particularly prominent among SMEs (social enterprises and NGOs) and local communities. Large companies such as PTT, SCG, CP, Thai Union, Mitr Phol, and others invested in more resources, piloting projects, and integrating into a scalable business. Thought leaders such as Dr. Singh Intrachooto (Founding Director of Creative Center for Eco-design and Chief Advisor for Research & Innovation for Sustainability Center, RISC) shape the media and public perception of circular economy and sustainability. A strong advocate and social entrepreneurs such as Ms. Pareena Prayukvong (Co-founder and Manager of The NETWORK for Sustainable Development Association) and Pruitti Kerdchoochuen (Founder and CEO of Dairy Home) are persistently building sustainable communities and scaling up circularity practice on-site and in local communities. Jaruwan Khammuang (CEO of Fang Thai Factory) empowered local farmer communities to produce paper from agri-fiber such as rice straws without toxic chemicals. Ms. Alisara Sivayathorn (CEO of Sivatel Bangkok) leads sustainable hospitality businesses through empowering community farmers and practicing circularity in building eco-tourism. Jirarot Pojanavaraphan (CEO of SC GRAND) and Naps Nophol Techaphangam (CEO of nornnorn) are young advocates of circular business taking their family business to the next level. Amorpol Huvanandana (CEO of Moreloop) and other young entrepreneurs in Bangkok are passionately pursuing sustainable textile & fashion and practicing circularity on textile. Thosaphol Suppametheekulwat (CEO of Qualy and CirPlas) is ambitiously building a plastics recycling hub business to close the loop of plastic materials. We found SC GRAND, an SME with 300 employees, a 3rd generation textile recycling company, is building a textile recycling hub in ASEAN, closing the loop of the textile sector. It has demonstrated that it is entirely possible to avoid using virgin materials for the textile and apparel industry and minimize negative environmental impact and create social sustainability.