สุนทรพจน์ : คำกล่าวของนายธานี ทองภักดี รองปลัดกระทรวงการต่างประเทศ ในการประชุม Bali Democracy Forum ศูนย์ข่าว กต.

สุนทรพจน์ : คำกล่าวของนายธานี ทองภักดี รองปลัดกระทรวงการต่างประเทศ ในการประชุม Bali Democracy Forum

Statement

by

H.E. Mr. Thani Thongphakdi

Deputy Permanent Secretary

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand

at the 11th Bali Democracy Forum’s General Debate

under the theme “Democracy for Prosperity”

6 December 2018

****************

 

Mr. Chairman,

Excellencies,

Distinguished Delegates,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

 

I wish, first, to thank the Government of the Republic of Indonesia for the warm hospitality and commend its steadfast commitment to hosting the Bali Democracy Forum.

 

This year, our theme is “Democracy for Prosperity”.  While very relevant, Thailand believes governments should strive to go beyond “Democracy for Prosperity” and aim for “Democracy for Sustainability”. This would ensure alignment with the global debate in general and with efforts under the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, in particular Goal 16 on promoting the rule of law; providing access to justice for all; and building effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels. Indeed, sustainability should be our key consideration as we continue to negotiate the complex geo-political, geo-economic and geo-social landscape of the 21st Century.  

 

So, how do we create an ecosystem of democracy based on respect and inclusiveness and geared towards sustainable development? Thailand believes that the answer begins and ends with the people, who are the heart of every democracy, as makers of governments and the drivers of progress.

 

Therefore, to begin, we must ensure our people’s participation in the democratic process as empowered citizens who can make learned and informed decisions. This participatory approach to building a sustainable democracy should be an inclusive one – for all people at all ages.

 

Second, we must ensure that our sustainable democratic ecosystem leaves no one behind.  Children and youth, women, persons with disabilities, and older persons are proven agents of change. Therefore, we have to step up efforts to empower those in vulnerable situations while also taking into account their needs and potentials.

 

Third, we have to continue to raise public awareness and further promote democracy and human rights education for all. This includes access to information.

 

Last week, the Thai Cabinet approved in principle the draft bill for a new Official Information Act, which requires government agencies to provide public access to official information equally to both Thais and non-Thais without the need to file any requests.

 

ICT, used appropriately, could also be a real game-changer and can provide our people with information, open platforms for debate, and bring their issues and concerns to the table.

 

Distinguished Delegates,

 

The Thai Government is committed to creating a sustainable democratic ecosystem.  We are moving towards general elections which could take place as soon as this coming February.  We are laying down the foundations for a stronger and sustainable democracy through the reforms taking place in various areas including the legal system, education and public services. This includes a “Zero Tolerance” policy against corruption, which is crucial if our ecosystem is to be prosperous and sustainable in the long run.

 

Let me conclude by reiterating that Thailand wishes to see a democracy where the power is vested in the people and the people are empowered to actively take part in building a stronger and more sustainable democracy. In this way, ladies and gentlemen, we would be able to steer democracy closer towards prosperity and, more importantly, sustainability.

 

I thank you.