The sex industry in Thailand generates fantasies. There are the fantasies of pliant girls which draw the western sex tourists, and then there are the fantasies of lurid exploitation which draw the western moralisers and NGOs. But what is the actual scale of prostitution in Thailand? And how serious is the trafficking problem?
(Alex Renton: "Learning the Thai Sex Trade")
There are 13 separate UN agencies and 8 international NGO's in Bangkok working to stop the sex trafficking trade - so many, that another UN body, UNIAP, has been set up to co-ordinate them. Despite this, there are no reliable figures on the scale of trafficking in Asia.
Critics are beginning to see that the lurid numbers often bandied about may actively harm the agencies' reputations, and the validity of their cause, should the perception arise that agencies are deliberately using overblown figures to stimulate more funding and contributions. In this way, overstating the case may, in the medium term at any rate, inhibit support.
The link is to Alex Renton's excellent article in Prospect which looks at the numbers for the sex trade and sex trafficking.
Prospect - article_details