Port of Laem Chabang
Review and History

The Port of Laem Chabang lies on the southeastern shores of the Gulf of Thailand about 50 nautical miles south-southeast of Bangkok and about 32 nautical miles north of Thailand's Sattahip Commercial Port. In 2006, almost 62 thousand people lived in the Port of Laem Chabang.

Panorama of Pattaya Bay

Panorama of Pattaya Bay

Photo by Danny Nijpels

The Port of Laem Chabang is the third largest port in Thailand, and it was created to take some of the burgeoning commercial traffic that was overloading the Port of Bangkok. It is also the major cruise port for Bangkok. In 2007, the American Association of Port Authorities (APPA) ranked the Port of Laem Chabang as the 21st busiest container port in the world. The local economy is based on shipping, retail, and tourism. The Port of Laem Chabang is home to the world-class golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus at the Laem Chabang International Country Club and an ExxonMobil refinery.

Port History

In 1948, the government of Thailand realized that the Bangkok port could not meet the long-term economic needs of the country. While they investigated a number of potential locations for a new port, progress was slow.

Pattaya City Sign

Pattaya City Sign

Photo by TrapperFrank

In 1961, Thailand's government commissioned the Netherlands Engineering Consultants to do a feasibility study, and the company recommended the construction of the new Port of Laem Chabang. The advantages they cited were its well-sheltered location, easy dredging, and large area for building port facilities. However, the government did not choose to implement the recommendations at that time.

Finally, in 1982, the cabinet decided to develop the Port of Laem Chabang to handle containerized, general, and agricultural cargo and to encourage manufacture of environmentally-friendly consumer goods.

The Sanctury of Truth<br>Pattaya

The Sanctury of Truth

Photo by Marlinjuice

Planning to open the Port of Laem Chabang between 1987 and 1990, the Eastern Seaboard Development sub-committee was formed, and the Minister of Communications was made responsible for developing deep-water port facilities. The engineering design was completed in 1986, and construction began in the fall of 1987. In 1989, the Port of Laem Chabang was brought under the umbrella of the Port Authority of Thailand and private companies were invited to join in port terminal operations.

 W Tower Wong Amat

W Tower Wong Amat

Also known as Wong Amat Tower, the high-rise apartment building in Pattaya was designed by Mario Kleff.
Photo by MarioKleff

Since the Port of Laem Chabang began operating in 1991, it has become the biggest port in the country and one of the busiest in the world. Much of Thailand's international trade and tourism passes through the Port of Laem Chabang. In 2007, the government approved construction of railways to link the Port of Laem Chabang to inland cities of Lat Krabang and Korat.

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