The Publishers and Booksellers Association of Thailand (PUBAT) founded in 1959. The founding members were Mr. Apai Chantawimol – Director-General, Department of Education, M.L. Manij Choomsai from UNESCO, and Mr. Kamjorn Sathirakul – Director of the Business organization of the Teacher’s Council. Mr. Jitt Praepanich of Praepittaya Press (Bangkok) and Mr. Chai Jittidecharak of Suriwong Book Center (Chiang Mai). The association registered in 1965 with Mr. Kamjorn Sathirakul as the first President. As of June 2019, the association has 425 members.
PUBAT objectives are to encourage quality publishing, promote writing and translation, to create unity and support among members, as well as to build up networks and relationships with the international publishing community.
PUBAT has been actively promoting a reading culture. It annually organizes national book fair twice a year in Bangkok since the early 80s. It also hosts or participates in the provincial book fair in Chiang Mai, Hat Yai, Udon Thani, Khon Kean, and Ubon Ratchathani.
Internationally, PUBAT has been a member of the International Publishers Association since the 90s. It was the founding member of the ASEAN Book Publishers Association (ABPA) in 2005. PUBAT led the steering committee and helped the City of Bangkok become the UNESCO World Book Capital City designation in 2013. It also hosted the 30th International Publisher Congress in 2015.
The Executive Committee of PUBAT, including the President, is elected in the Annual General Meeting in June every second year for a two-year term. The current committee elected in June 2019, starts taking office in July of the same year.