Thai-Myanmar border towns agree to boost trade

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RANONG, Sept 16 – Senior Thai and Myanmar provincial officials met today in this southern border city in an attempt to boost economic cooperation between the adjacent provincial cities.

Ranong governor Cherdsak Champathet hosted the meeting with his Myanmar counterpart U Kyaw Swar Tun, governor of Kawthaung, the Myanmar town adjacent to Ranong.

The Thai governor said Myanmar officially invited Thai operators to invest in its fishing industry and ice factory, as well as sounding out possibilities of exporting Myanmar product to Thailand.

He noted that the Myanmar government encouraged its citizens to grow rice in the Tenasserim mountain range to reach 1.8 million tonnes of annual production.

Mr Cherdsak added Thailand also plans to expand export market to Myanmar, especially for construction materials, where construction projects are on the rise.

Ranong Tourist Business Association president Sonchai Auitekkeng said his agency, the provincial Federation of Thai Industries, and the Tourism Authority of Thailand Chumphon office are now pushing for Ranong to become a tourism gateway along the Andaman Coast and for Thai and Myanmar islands in the area.

He said Ranong has potential to become the link between the two neighbours as the Myanmar government has opened three more entry points for Thais and foreigners, a move which he believes is the turning point leading to expanded tourism, as well as trade and investment. (MCOT online news)