PM Yingluck calls Thailand a haven for foreign investment

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BRUSSELS, March 6 – Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra has urged the Belgian private sector to take part in investment in Thailand’s mega infrastructure projects.

During a meeting with her Belgian counterpart Elio Di Rupo, the Thai premier said Thailand has enjoyed political and economic stability, and a gross domestic product (GDP) growth of 6.4 per cent.

Investment opportunities are vast in Thailand given its potential as a gateway for European Union countries to the Southeast Asian region and the US$66 billion mammoth Thai government projects involving transport, telecommunications and energy, she said.

She asked the Belgian prime minister to consider Schengen visa waivers for Thai passport holders to promote tourism between the two countries. Ms Yingluck made a similar request to the Swedish leader during her visit to Stockholm yesterday.

The Thai and Belgian premiers agreed in principle to exchange knowledge on medical science, food safety, innovative technology, high-level research and development and logistics to boost Thailand’s competitive edge.

Ms Yingluck said the March 17-22 visit to Thailand by Crown Prince Philippe of Belgium and the Belgian business community will strengthen the relationship between the two countries.

A joint action plan may be signed during the Crown Prince’s visit to enhance bilateral cooperation in various aspects.

Later today Ms Yingluck is scheduled to meet with Jose Manuel Barroso, European Commission president when they will announce the enforcement of the Thai-European Union Free Trade Agreement.

A Thai delegation comprising off public and private sectors, led by Ms Yingluck, began visiting Sweden and Belgium on Monday and will conclude tomorrow