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Bangkok Economy

Bangkok is the economic center  of Thailand, dominating the country's economy and dwarfing any other urban centers. Development continues to pour in to Bangkok mostly neglecting the rest of the nation. It is ranked as the 54th richest urban agglomeration, slightly behind Singapore and Metro Manila.Its combined economic output is roughly 89 billion dollars in purchasing power parity  terms, which accounts for roughly 16 percent of Thailand's GDP also in PPP terms.

Bangkok is home to the headquarters of all of Thailand's major commercial banks and financial institutions; 27 financial institutions and a number of international banks located in Bangkok include ABN AMRO, ANZ, Bank of America, Bank of Baroda, Bank of China, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi, CIMB, Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Barclays, Indian Overseas Bank, UBS, Credit Suisse, OCBC Bank, Mizuho Corporate Bank, Calyon, RBS, RHB Bank, Macquarie Group, ING Bank, Scotia Bank, Sumitomo Mitsui Bank, UOB, BNP Paribas, and Standard Chartered. hold at least 1 billion dollars in total assets. Their bank deposits totaled approximately THB 9.6 trillion, the equivalent of USD 314 billion at the end of the third quarter in 2007. A large number of multinational corporations base their regional headquarters in Bangkok due to the lower cost of the workforce and firm operations relative to other major Asian business centers. Thirteen Bangkok-based companies make the Forbes 2000 list annually. The list includes the largest Thai bank, Bangkok Bank, the country's largest listing as well as the state-owned energy firm PTT, and the renowned Charoen-Phokphand agri-foods conglomerate.

The market for flights to enter Laos and Cambodia is heavily dominated by airlines based in Bangkok such as THAI Airways International, Bangkok Airways, and the multitude of low cost airlines in Thailand. Telecommunications, retail, real estate, airlines, and media conglomerates mainly cater to the country's growing population, however, few Thai corporations venture overseas and gain notoriety.

Tourism is a significant contributor to Thailand's economy, providing about 5 percent of GDP. Bangkok is Thailand's principal international gateway and a destination in its own right. This giant market has made Bangkok a prime location for hotel operations as well as the launching pad for small and medium accommodation enterprises. Moreover, Bangkok-based hospitality companies such as Dusit Thani Group, Erawan Group, and Siam Hotels and Resorts, have all expanded operations and can officially be classified as a multinational corporation in its own right.

Income inequality is a growing issue in Bangkok, especially between relatively unskilled lower-income immigrants from rural provinces in Thailand and neighboring countries and middle-class professionals (45% of registered residents), business elites, and retired and working foreign expats. About 7 percent of Bangkok's population (excluding illegal immigrants who constitute about 5-8 percent of population) live below the poverty line compared to the national average of 9 percent.

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