In response to a critical article in the Asian Wall Street Journal, The Nation has printed a piece that attempts to clarify the sufficiency economy agenda and its relationship to the policies of the Surayud regime:

“The Learning Centre of King Bhumibol’s Philosophy of Economic Sufficiency says the concept focuses on living a moderate, self-dependent life without greed or overexploitation of, for example, natural resources.

A more advanced approach includes exchanges of assistance and cooperation to benefit the public as well as promoting sustainable development. The three main features of the economic-sufficiency philosophy are moderation, reasonable actions and mental strength, and two conditions are knowledge and morality.

Importantly, it is “sufficiency economy”, and not “self-sufficiency economy”…

Despite Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont’s series of explanations at many venues, the philosophy has failed to sink in. And now foreigners believe several key economic moves introduced by the military-installed government are both inward-looking and inspired by the sufficiency-economy philosophy.”

– from “Misunderstanding continues unabated“, The Nation, 17 January 2007