TOKYO, May 24 – Japanese businessmen who met with Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra have shown their interest in investing in various major projects in Thailand.
The Thai premier is visiting the Japanese capital for four days, Wednesday through Saturday, to speak at the international conference on “The Future of Asia” after which she met with her Japanese counterpart Shinso Abe and Japanese businessmen from several leading corporations.
In a meeting with Hiroshi Takada, chairman and chief executive officer of the Organisation for Small and Medium Enterprises and Regional Innovation, Japan (SMRJ), Ms Yingluck urged closer cooperation between the SMEs of both countries.
The SMRJ chairman described SMEs as the most crucial element in Japan’s economic development and said Thailand could be one of Japan’s strong markets.
There are currently 3,000 small and medium Japanese businesses in Thailand and Mr Takada predicted more in the future.
The Thai prime minister expressed her appreciation to Nobuhiro Endo, president of NEC Corporation, for the company’s strong confidence in Thailand despite the massive 2011 floods. He said that NEC stands by its plan to expand its manufacturing plant and investment in the kingdom.
Ms Yingluck invited NEC to join in the investment of Thailand’s infrastructure development and high speed train projects.
Mitsui & Co president and CEO Masami Iijima told the Thai premier that his company was keen on jointly investing in high speed train system.
Mitsui and its Thai partner will launch the first choline chloride plant in Thailand after which the country will not have to import the substance from abroad.
Masahir Okafuji, president and CEO of Itochu Corporation, told the Thai leader that his company is interested in jointly investing with Thailand to develop the Dawei deep seaport.
He requested the Thai government to grant financial support to Myanmar and to create a standardised mechanism for private companies investing in Myanmar