Weekly press briefing by MFA Spokesperson
On Thursday, 9 June 2022 at 11:30 hours
At Press Conference Room, MFA and via MFA Facebook Live
1. Follow-up on the official visit of DPM/FM to Saudi Arabia
- The official visit of DPM/FM and the Thai delegation during 15-18 May 2022 was a successful trip to increase the visibility of Thai businesses with new investment opportunities in tourism, healthcare, agriculture and food, construction, and chemical industry.
- On 7 June 2022, the Thai Government announced it would grant Saudi passport holders wishing to enter Thailand with 30-day visa exemption, building upon the successful normalisation of Thai-Saudi relations. This would attract many Saudi tourists and benefit Thailand’s exports, workers, and tourism. It is expected that the number of Saudi tourist arrivals per year will increase by 100,000-150,000, which would contribute approximately 5,000 million Baht to the annual growth.
- Concrete outcomes include (1) 5 MOUs signed between Thai private sector and the Minister of Investment of Saudi Arabia, (2) cheaper prices for imports of fertilizers from Saudi Arabia, and (3) a business agreement between Minor Hotels and Diriyah Gate Development Authority-DGDA. Riyadh Chamber of Commerce will also lead the Saudi business delegation to visit Thailand during 4-8 July 2022 to strengthen bilateral economic ties. In this regard, Thailand can serve as a regional gateway to ASEAN for Saudi Arabia in the future.
- Both sides also agreed on pushing forward cooperation in following areas: (1) Saudi investment in the EEC; (2) Bilateral Investment Treaty; and (3) agricultural development, notably the export of Thai rice to Saudi Arabia.
- HRH the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabi will pay an official visit to Thailand later this year to build upon the above multi-sectoral cooperation. MFA will organise a meeting to follow up the official visit with over 30 concerned agencies from both public and private sectors at the end of June.
2. Progress on the export of Thai fruits to China
- During his official visit to China on 2 April 2022, DPM/FM advanced Thailand’s and China’s interests in key areas. These included transport, logistics, and trade facilitation for agricultural products, especially fruits, and travel resumption between the two countries.
- The objective was to shorten the delayed customs clearance time under China’s Zero-COVID policy by (1) enhancing the efficiency of customs clearance, extending operating hours, and employing more Chinese officials at customs checkpoints on the land, sea, and in the air; (2) establishing a Green Lane for agricultural products; (3) expediting the construction of Chinese import facilities to leverage the Chinese-Lao railway project; and (4) expanding land-sea trade corridors.
3. Update on the request for Thai students to return to China
- China has yet to allow the free flow of foreign students due to the national Zero-COVID policy. However, the country has eased some travel restrictions for students from Thailand, South Korea, the Solomon Islands, Pakistan, Nicaragua, Russia, and Sri Lanka, among others. This also applies to international students from certain universities, such as Tianjin Juilliard University, NYU Shanghai, and Duke Kunshan University, as well as students of the Schwarzman Scholars at Tsinghua University.
- The Thai Government has been working closely with the Chinese Government for the past two years. As a result, China has granted permission for Thai students to resume their studies in China, based on their needs and readiness. In February 2022, the first group of Thai students successfully returned to China, strictly following the local COVID-19 measures.
- Both sides are working together to ensure the arrival of the second group of Thai students soon.
4. Thailand’s donation for humanitarian assistance in Ukraine through UNICEF
- On 6 June 2022, DPS Vilawan Mangklatanakul presented 500,000 Baht donation from the Thai Government to Ms. Kyungsun Kim, Representative, and Head of Mission of UNICEF Thailand, to support humanitarian assistance programmes for the affected Ukrainian children and their families.
- The UNICEF Thailand’s Head of Mission expressed appreciation to the Thai Government and all parts of Thai society on behalf of the organization and of the Ukrainian children and their families. She stressed that Thailand’s support was meaningful and would help to alleviate the sufferings of a large number of Ukrainian civilians, which has been ongoing for over 3 months now.
- DPS Vilawan expressed grave concern of Thailand on the ongoing conflict and humanitarian situation in Ukraine, which have caused pervasive impacts on a large scale of its population, including children and their families. She stressed the importance of timely and adequate humanitarian assistance for the affected civilians, which was a shared responsibility of the international community.
- Since February this year, the Thai Government, together with Thai private sector, civil societies, and Thai people, have already provided over 11 million Baht of humanitarian assistance in total to the people of Ukraine through various channels, such as the Thai Red Cross Society, Polish Red Cross Society, Ukrainian Red Cross Society, the Embassy of Ukraine in Bangkok and Thai private sector operating in Europe.
5. The 25th Anniversary of the Establishment of BIMSTEC (13-19 June 2022)
- On the occasion of Thailand’s chairmanship of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) (year 2022-2023), and the 25th Anniversary of the Establishment of BIMSTEC in 2022, MFA invites the public to join the Exhibition of the 25th Anniversary of the Establishment of BIMSTEC, to be held between 13-19 June 2022 at Charoennakorn Hall, M Floor, ICONSIAM.
- DPM/FM will preside over the Opening ceremony, to be held on 13 June 2022, at 13.30 hrs.. The ceremony will be also attended by the Secretary-General of BIMSTEC, DG of International Economic Affairs, and ambassadors of BIMSTEC member states.
Weekly Press Briefing: https://fb.watch/dxen5W3dr_/
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Department of Information