Thailand to host Forum for East Asia-Latin America Cooperation next week

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BANGKOK, Aug 16 — Mr Songsak Saicheua, Director-General of Department of American and South Pacific Affairs on Friday briefed the press that Thailand will host the 15th Senior Officials Meeting of the Forum for East Asia-Latin America Cooperation (FEALAC) and related activities during Aug 19 – 22.

On the 15th anniversary of the establishment of the Forum for East Asia – Latin America Cooperation (FEALAC), Thailand, as the current East Asia Coordinator of FEALAC, will host the 15th FEALAC Senior Officials Meeting (SOM), as well as the four Working Groups Meetings and side events on August 19-22 at the Bangkok Convention Centre at CentralWorld, Bangkok.

With 36 countries from East Asia and Latin America as members, FEALAC represents 39 per cent of the world population, 33 per cent of world trade and 33 per cent of the World GDP. Since 2000, trade between East Asia and Latin America has grown at an annual average rate of 20.5 per cent, reaching US$500 billion.

Two-way investment has risen to more than US$20 billion.

The 15th FEALAC SOM will be co-chaired by Mr Sihasak Phuangketkeow, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Thailand and Mr Alejandro Solano Ortiz, Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Costa Rica.

Three side events will be organized on 20 August 2014 with the intention to promote collaboration, networking and, connectivity within FEALAC: Tourism Seminar, FEALAC Business Forum and Academic/Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) Roundtable.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Thailand will also organize a FEALAC Showcase which consists of mini exhibition and promotional booths of FELAC member countries at Eden 1 hall of the CentralWorld Shopping Complex during August 19-21.

The outcome of the 15th FEALAC SOM will include a set of systematic stock-taking and recommendations to move FEALAC forward, which will be actively implemented and submitted to the SOM and the Foreign Ministers Meeting next year in Costa Rica.

As a result of the Bangkok meetings and side events, it is hoped that more notable FEALAC-wide or FEALAC regional projects will be invigorated, improvement of coordination and work process will be deliberated and applied, and networks of private sectors and universities will be materialized and strengthened.