Fourth Session of the United Kingdom-Thailand Strategic Dialogue

Fourth Session of the United Kingdom-Thailand Strategic Dialogue

วันที่นำเข้าข้อมูล 1 Jul 2022

วันที่ปรับปรุงข้อมูล 1 Jul 2022

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Joint Statement
Fourth Session of the United Kingdom-Thailand Strategic Dialogue

  1. The fourth session of the United Kingdom-Thailand Strategic Dialogue was held in London on 30 June 2022. It was co-chaired by The Rt. Hon. Amanda Milling MP, Minister for Asia at the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office of the UK, and His Excellency Mr. Vijavat Isarabhakdi, Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs of Thailand. We acknowledged that this Joint Statement serves as a reference to the Thailand-United Kingdom Strategic Dialogue initiatives and is not legally binding in nature.


Bilateral co-operation

  1. We reiterated the long-standing strategic partnership between the United Kingdom and Thailand, and the fourth session of the United Kingdom-Thailand Strategic Dialogue marks the continuation of such strong bilateral relationship between our two countries. Our bilateral ties cover cultural exchanges, education, science, technology and innovation, political and economic cooperation, defence and security cooperation, health, climate change and sustainable growth.

  2. We acknowledged the breadth and depth of our cooperation which has intensified with the backdrop of the UK’s Indo-Pacific Tilt and the UK having established Dialogue Partnership with ASEAN in 2021. In this regard, both sides stressed the importance of exchanges between our Ministers and senior officials to advance progress on shared objectives. The Thai side expressed its interest in exploring the possibility of a Visa Waiver for Holders of Diplomatic Passports of our respective countries.

  3. We noted that this dialogue serves as a mechanism to take stock of and complement our significant bilateral cooperation in other areas, including the UK-Thailand Joint Economic and Trade Committee (JETCO), Consular Dialogue, Memorandums of Understanding, and Letter of Intent with key agencies, and regular Ministerial and official visits. We noted and celebrated the wider cooperation between our peoples, businesses, parliamentarians, academics and other professionals.

Foreign policy

  1. We committed to closer coordination through multilateral fora, including the United Nations and within the framework of ASEAN. This would include exchanges on promoting the rules based international system; maritime security; conflict prevention; disarmament and non-proliferation; responsible state behaviour in cyberspace; human rights; democracy; media freedom; combating human trafficking and people smuggling; gender equality; peace and security; health; climate change; and environmental protection.

  2. In the context of the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, we reaffirmed respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity as enshrined in the United Nations Charter. We expressed grave concern at the humanitarian situation and atrocities as well as the far-reaching economic repercussions caused by the conflict to the world. We also reiterated the need for the international community to address the plights and sufferings of all affected people.


Global issues including the environment, sustainable growth and climate change and health

  1. Recognising the pressing need to protect our planet and transition to a low carbon economy, both sides agreed to work together to combat the urgent challenges presented by climate change in line with our commitments under the Paris Agreement, to keep 1.5 degrees of warming within reach. In line with our respective agreements at COP26 in Glasgow, we agreed to strengthen co-operation and dialogue on climate change mitigation and adaptation. The UK agreed to support Thailand’s efforts to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 and net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2065, including cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 40% compared to Business as Usual by 2030 with international support.
  2. We noted existing close and deepening collaboration on low carbon energy transition, electric vehicles, sustainable finance, circular economy, and other areas and plans to explore further cooperation in the coming months. The Thai side noted the UK’s interest in undertaking British Investment Partnerships in Thailand.
  3. Both sides recognised the breadth and strategic importance of the UK-Thailand bilateral health relationship and close cooperation. This includes through the UK’s donation of415,040 AstraZeneca vaccines to Thailand in August 2021, after AstraZeneca and Siam Bioscience agreed on a partnership to create the regional production hub of the Oxford/AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. We committed to collaborating on efforts to develop the proposed global pandemic treaty, under negotiation through the World Health Organisation Intergovernmental Negotiating Body, in which Thailand is the Vice-Chair.
  4. Both sides also acknowledged the significant roles of Universal Health Coverage (UHC), particularly in ensuring access to and affordability of essential health services during the fight against COVID-19. Beyond the pandemic situation, we welcomed close health cooperation in fields including anti-microbial resistance, HIV/AIDS, non-communicable diseases, digital health, medical devices, technology for ageing in place, professional development, hospital accreditation and genomics. We noted that this year has marked the beginning of a programme of exchange of health professionals between Thailand and the UK. We noted plans to expand cooperation further to jointly tackle the most significant healthcare challenges, including on life sciences and specifically in the field of genomics.   


Cyber, digital, science, and technology and innovation co-operation

  1. We recognised a shared vision to maximise the benefits of digital technology in enhancing shared economic growth and boosting our trading relationship, while addressing the challenges of digital trust and security. We noted long-term cooperation between Thailand and the UK on digital, including joint work on digital government,smart city, paperless trade, e-procurement, digital identity, cybersecurity and the use of blockchain technology in trade finance, energy trading and intellectual property rights.

  2. We also noted our shared ambition to explore opportunities for future public and private sector cooperation in areas such as digital start-ups, digital trade and e-Commerce, digital trade standards and regulations, digital governance, and digital transformation. In this connection, we welcomed the signing of the Letter of Intent between the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society of Thailand and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport of the UK.

  3. We noted the visit by UK cyber experts to Thailand in March 2022, an agreed outcome of the meeting between Foreign Secretary The Hon. Elizabeth Truss MP and National Security Council Secretary General Supot Malaniyom in November 2021. We noted the significant engagement and support provided by Thai agencies during the visit, and welcomed the recommendations that identified several opportunities for future UK support to Thailand. We noted detailed discussions are ongoing to refine the UK offer and ensure Thai cyber objectives are achieved.

  4. We acknowledged the important roles of science, technology and innovation (STI) in economic and social development and also in tackling environmental and local challenges. We noted that STI is an essential element in sustainability transition and the quest to achieve carbon neutrality and net zero greenhouse gas emissions. We agreed to support the partnership among research institutes, private sectors and higher education institutes between the UK and Thailand to share and develop their STI capabilities, including exploring further cooperation in food and nutritional security. We recognised, in particular, the crucial role that the Newton Fund has played in this regard.


Culture and people-to-people links

  1. The UK and Thailand committed to working together in developing sustainable creative economies through inclusive artistic exchanges and collaboration, highlighting key areas such as creative districts and cities, cultural heritage for inclusive growth, arts and inclusion, digital innovation in the arts, as well as arts entrepreneurship. We celebrated the collaboration and shared learning between key UK and Thai arts and cultural agencies, taking into account how the creative and cultural sectors can create social-economic and cultural impacts to the wider society.


Research and education co-operation

  1. We acknowledged the strong research and education ties between us especially in the tertiary education sector. The UK and Thailand committed to further encouraging mutually beneficial Thai-UK Higher Education partnerships focusing on quality, inclusion and internationalisation. We supported the promotion of research and talent exchange between the UK and Thailand. We noted the important role Chevening Scholarships continues to play in identifying and supporting Thailand’s future leaders, and that the Turing Scheme will support UK students to undertake educational exchanges in Thailand. We agreed to update our Memorandum of Understanding in Education with the aim of facilitating ambitious collaboration between our education sectors to enable a skilled, contextualised and globalised workforce for the future. This will include strengthening the teaching, learning and assessment of English at all levels and a particular focus on beneficial application of education technology.


Cooperation within ASEAN

  1. We committed to broadening our partnership in the Indo-Pacific region. Thailand welcomed the UK’s Indo-Pacific tilt and the clear commitment this represents to deeper and enduring bilateral and multilateral partnership with the region. In support of this commitment, we agreed to closer coordination through regional multilateral fora, including ASEAN, now that the UK is an ASEAN Dialogue Partner. We agreed to strengthen the UK-ASEAN relationship to promote collaboration in the three ASEAN Community Pillars: political-security, economic and socio-cultural. We will also take forward exchanges of views on regional issues of mutual interest such as the role of science and innovation in regional development.

  2. Acknowledging ASEAN’s positive and constructive role in Myanmar, both sides welcomed working together in support of the Five Point Consensus and reaffirmed support for the work of the Special Envoy of the ASEAN Chair on Myanmar. We agreed on the need for the timely and complete implementation of the Five Point Consensus to ensure the crisis is not perpetuated. We acknowledged the role of the ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance on disaster management (AHA Centre) in responding to the crisis, and looked forward to continuing collaboration between the UK and Thailand on humanitarian assistance. We recognised the importance of effective and impartial delivery of humanitarian assistance to the peopleof Myanmar who are the most in need, without discrimination. The UK and Thailand also called on all parties in Myanmar to engage in peaceful dialogue, to refrain from violence, and to return to the path of democratic transition.

Human Rights and Democracy

  1. We committed to cooperating, both bilaterally and in multilateral fora in the promotion and protection of human rights in areas of common interest, including with regard to the implementation of human rights treaties to which we are party and the recommendations which we previously accepted during the Universal Periodic Reviews (UPRs). Thailand and the UK also committed to working to extend our cooperation with interested partners, through technical cooperation and capacity building.

  2. We recognised that good governance, the rule of law, media freedom, and a vibrant and open civic space that guarantee fundamental freedoms are all crucial for sustainable development and democracy. We noted the importance of free societies and will continue to work together to support efforts in strengthening freedom, good governance, transparency and rule of law, through sharing experience and best practice.


Trade, investment, economy and business environment

  1. Thailand continues to be one of the UK’s largest trading partners in Southeast Asia, and the longstanding trading partnership between the countries was recognised by both sides. Following the completion of the Joint Trade Review last year, we established and conducted the first annual UK-Thailand Joint Economic and Trade Committee (JETCO) on 21 June 2022. We agreed the JETCO provides a significant new opportunity to enhance bilateral trade and to pursue more open trade and investment through global and regional economic integration.

  2. Through the JETCO framework, we agreed to collaborate in identifying and addressing obstacles to trade, and exploring opportunities for cooperation in Agriculture, Food and Drink, Digital, Health, Finance and other sectors in our respective countries in order to enhance the bilateral trade relationship. We emphasised the importance of fostering closer business-to-business collaboration and undertaking trade promotion activities in areas of mutual interest. In this connection, we welcomed the organisation of a business roundtable held back-to-back with JETCO on 21 June 2022. Recognising the opportunities to increase bilateral trade and investment, both sides agreed to start discussions to develop an Enhanced Trade Partnership (ETP) which could mark a significant milestone in our relations, and could be a first step in laying the foundations for a potential FTA in the future.

  3. We noted longstanding economic cooperation between our countries with a particular focus on improving efficiency in government; value for money and transparency in public procurement. We noted plans to revisit and deepen this cooperation in the context of the UK’s commitments as an ASEAN Dialogue Partner.

  4. We recognised the importance of our bilateral relationship on financial services, under which the UK works in partnership with Thailand’s financial regulators to support the development of Thailand’s Fintech ecosystem and regulation and to support Thailand’s Sustainable Finance Initiatives, recognising their critical importance for climate change. We noted plans for further, broader technical cooperation in these areas, including through our existing MOUs with the Bank of Thailand and the Securities and Exchange Commission, as well as a planned future visit to the UK by the Secretary General of the Securities and Exchange Commission.


Defence, security and serious organised crime

  1. Recognising the importance of multilateral fora in supporting effective coordination amongst nations to ensure peaceful international cooperation, we expressed our resolve to take a lead on global issues in order to promote peace, security, and stability. The UK fully respects ‘ASEAN Centrality’ and the ‘ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific’. Building on the momentum generated by the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding in March, both countries looked forward to deepening UK-Thailand defence cooperation, particularly within counter-terrorism, cybersecurity, military medicine and peacekeeping. Defence engagement, including high level visits and the initiation of an annual bilateral meeting, will further friendly military ties between our two countries, and will lead to cooperation in other areas of mutual interest in the future.

  2. We noted that Thailand continues to be an extremely attractive destination for British nationals as both tourists and longer-term residents. The threat from terrorism remains pervasive worldwide. The signing of the UK-Thailand Counter-Terrorism Memorandum of Understanding during the Dialogue will certainly further strengthen mutual cooperation in preventing and mitigating the risk and impact of international terrorism. Our engagement will focus on sharing knowledge and best practice in tourism, protective security, and major incident response. We looked forward to ongoing and closer co-operation.

  3. We noted the important cooperation between UK and Thai maritime security experts and officials to improve port security at key commercial port facilities in Thailand. We agreed to continue to jointly undertake International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) assessments at key Thai commercial ports, and delivery of capacity development activity. We looked forward to a visit by Thai Maritime Security officials to the UK later in 2022, which will see the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding on the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code.

  4. We noted that UK and Thai Law Enforcement Authorities have long-standing relationships that focus on disrupting a wide range of serious organised crime, including: lawful collection and sharing of intelligence; pursuing fugitives; investigating child sexual abuse cases; detecting and deterring modern slavery; tackling human trafficking and irregular migration via air and abuse of legitimate routes. We looked forward to deepening our co-operation.



  1. We agreed to explore an opportunity for a Consular Dialogue in the near future. This Dialogue would support the consular activities of both countries and promote greater exchanges of our peoples, noting that Thailand remains one of the most popular long haul holiday destinations for British travellers, and the UK has been one of the top destinations for Thai visitors, especially Thai students and researchers. In this connection, we therefore committed to working together to support the safety of tourists and foreign residents, and to promoting the ease of travel between our respective countries.


Fifth Strategic Dialogue

  1. The Hon. Amanda Milling MP, Minister for Asia at the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office of the UK and His Excellency Mr. Vijavat Isarabhakdi, Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs of Thailand, look forward to the continuation of the Strategic Dialogue as an important bilateral mechanism toward strengthening the partnership between Thailand and the United Kingdom. Both sides agreed that the Fifth Strategic Dialogue would be convened in Bangkok at a mutually convenient time.