Thailand and Vietnam Agree on the Need to Develop Regional Connectivity

by Duangkamol Buranasomphop

Thailand and Vietnam Agr

           Thailand and Vietnam have agreed on the need to develop regional connectivity, particularly that linking Thailand with Lao PDR and Vietnam on the East-West Economic Corridor (Route 9), Route 8, and Route 12.

            The issue was raised for discussion during the meeting of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and Mr. Nguyen Phu Trong, the General Secretary of the Communist Party of Viet Nam, who visited Thailand on 25- 27 June 2013 as guest of the Royal Thai Government.

            At present, Thailand and Lao PDR are preparing the process of implementation the Single Stop Inspection system at a border crossing point, connecting Thailand’s Mukdahan province and Laos’ Savannakhet. The system is expected to be launched within this year. 

            Thailand was pleased to learn that Vietnam and Lao PDR would finalize an MOU for the same purpose at a border crossing point, connecting Vietnam’s Lao Bao and Laos’ Dansavanh. Thailand would also consider providing support on motorway development in Vietnam particularly the section connecting Lao PDR and Thailand. Concerning this issue, both countries would urge Japan and the Asian Development Bank to offer funding support.

            Regarding economic cooperation, Thailand and Vietnam reiterated their intent to increase bilateral trade value by 20 percent annually to reach 15 billion US dollars within the year 2020. Thailand would also encourage Thai investors to invest more in Vietnam in construction and petrochemical industries, and it would welcome more Vietnamese investors to Thailand. Both sides also welcomed the upgrading of their bilateral relations to a strategic partnership.

            On cultural cooperation, Thailand and Vietnam endorsed the establishment of Thai study centers and Vietnamese study Centers in each other’s country in order to promote cultural and language exchange between the two countries. Thailand thanked Vietnam for its continuous support for the Thai-Vietnamese Friendship Association, which would help promote tourism and people-to-people contact.

            In its capacity as the Sino-ASEAN Coordinator, Thailand would be pleased to cooperate with Vietnam in discussing and seeking sustainable solutions particularly to the security of the South China Sea by promoting trust through various cooperation projects under the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea.

            Both countries agreed to promote sustainable water development through mutual cooperation in the development of Mekong River and under the mechanism of Mekong River Commission. They also agreed to move closer together to enhance the important role of ASEAN in the global arena.


Duangkamol Buranasomphop

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