Economy and Investment

Thailand Ready to Expand Cooperation with Myanmar

by Duangkamol Buranasomphop

Thailand Ready to Expand

Thailand is ready to expand cooperation with Myanmar in all aspects. Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha paid an official visit to Myanmar on 9-10 October 2014.

Myanmar was the first country on his visit after he assumed office as the Prime Minister of Thailand. Prime Minister Prayut hoped that the two countries would forge the next phase of mutual relations as Partnership for Security and Development.

Concerning connectivity development, the Prime Minister informed the President of Myanmar that Thailand was now working on the repair of the first bridge crossing the Mei River, and had finished with a feasibility study and plan design for the second bridge.

The Thai Government has a policy to develop special economic zones along the border area with the Mae Sot Special Economic Zone in Tak as the pioneer project. This will immensely benefit border trade and investment and will help create employment for both Thai and Myanmar people.

Regarding the Dawei Special Economic Zone, both countries agreed to push forward the project. Thailand will provide support in establishing a small-scale hospital in Dawei.

Thailand and Myanmar came to terms on regulation of migrant workers, a policy prioritized by the Thai government, to ensure proper protection of migrant workers’ rights in accordance with the laws and to prevent human trafficking. To be able to resolve the problems in a sustainable manner, the Government of Thailand called for Myanmar cooperation in quickly dispatching its government officials to conduct nationality verification of Myanmar workers in Thailand.

According to Prime Minister Prayut, migrant workers will be divided into 3 categories: 1) daily workers, 2) seasonal workers, and 3) annual workers. He insisted that Myanmar workers will be well taken care of in the same manner as Thai workers. Unfairness and impartiality, if any, can immediately be reported to the officials.

On cooperation in anti-narcotics efforts, Prime Minister Prayut reiterated the Thai government’s intent to resolve drugs and narcotics-related problems. Thailand is pleased to receive constant cooperation from Myanmar, and hopes to strengthen further cooperation on this issue.

President Thein Sein said that Myanmar had established liaison offices in the areas adjacent to Thailand’s Mae Sai district in Chiang Rai province, Mae Sot district in Tak province, and Ranong province in an attempt to suppress human trafficking activities.

The President of Myanmar also called on Thailand to consider increasing more scholarships from Thailand’s PTT Group to Myanmar people, and thanked the Thai Government and people for the donation of one million US dollars to Myanmar as a Cyclone Nargis relief.


Duangkamol Buranasomphop

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