BANGKOK, 18 July 2013 Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Surapong Tovijakchaikul has called for a revival of the old silk route that used to flourish in the ancient lifeline, for the benefit of Asia’s economy and development.
Mr. Surapong made the call at the opening ceremony of the Working Group Meeting on Enhanced ACD Regional Connectivity, hosted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday. The meeting was aimed at forging enhanced infrastructure connectivity within Asia, and between Asia and Europe in particular, through railway networks, as it is key to trade, investment and tourism promotion, as well as cost reduction for goods and products transported along the region’s economic corridors.
Recommendations gathered at the Working Group Meeting will form an important basis for the development of an ACD Blueprint on Enhanced Infrastructure Connectivity, which is one of the major expected outcomes of the 2nd ACD Summit to be held by Thailand in March 2015.
The ACD, or Asia Cooperation Dialogue, was inaugurated in 2002 on the initiative of Thailand to be Asia’s first continent-wide policy forum. Its key principle is to consolidate Asia’s strengths, and fortify its competitiveness by maximizing the diversity and rich resources available in Asia. Currently, the ACD has 32 Member States from every sub-region of the continent.