5th Mekong Subregion Summit opens in Bangkok

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BANGKOK, Dec 19 —  The two-day 5th Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) Summit opened in Bangkok today with the private sector from member countries discussing investment plans.

Deputy Transport Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith told journalists that the GMS private sector–including Myanmar, China, the three Indochina countries – Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam —  and Thailand would on Friday  discuss investment plans while Thailand alone would focus on an investment value of about US$30 billion from 2014 to 2018.

Most of the investment in Thailand would focus on transportation development including road and rail links.

Mr Arkhom said GMS in its capacity as coordinator for the six member countries would find solutions to problems obstructing a joint investment between the members.

The problems include a difference in rules and regulations between the member countries as well as laying out preparations to cater to human resources for investment in future, he said.

Some 40-60 per cent of the Thai economy is agricultural, and investors wishing to invest in agro-related industries would receive special support, said Mr Arkhom, who is also secretary-general of the National Economic and Social Development Board.

Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang was the first foreign government leader to arrive in Thailand to attend the meeting, arriving early today.