Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra will make a one-day official visit to the Philippines on Thursday, 19 January 2012, to introduce himself after assuming office as the Prime Minister of Thailand.
The visit will be her eighth overseas trip to the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) since she took office last year.
Government Spokesperson Titima Chaisaeng said that the Prime Minister would explore further trade opportunities with the Philippines and show Thailand’s readiness to sell rice to the Philippines.
She will also push for the organizing of the fifth meeting of the Joint Commission on Bilateral Cooperation between the two countries. Other major topics of discussion include education and alternative energy cooperation.
During the visit, Thailand is expected to propose the setting up of a Rice Reserve regarding food security to the Philippines, so that the country could consider buying more rice from Thailand.
Thailand’s private sector investments in the Philippines span a wide variety of industries, from banking, healthcare, and paper, to ceramics, energy, and airlines, among others not to mention the numerous popular Thai restaurants throughout the country. Thai businesses have been able to leverage the skill and potential of the Philippine workforce, for the high level of training, international exposure, and language capabilities, as well as the strategic location of the Philippines in bridging South East Asia and East Asia, including the regional trade relations therein.
Many of the foreign direct investments from Thailand have been continually developing themselves in the Philippines for decades, practicing Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and returning the benefits to the Philippine local communities and society through various programs, including scholarships, livelihood, public health and worthwhile activities for the youth. Examples of these endeavors are the scholarships provided by the Royal Thai Embassy to university students as well as the construction of Day Care Centers in Muntinlupa that provide quality primary school education to children from less privileged communities.
Also notable is the “SCG Sharing the Dream” Scholarship Program, as part of Siam Cement Group?s commitment to CSR. Presently, Thailand is expanding opportunities to create more investments through the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding which is envisioned to provide more opportunities to invigorate trade and investments in the future.