Thai PM to visit Malaysia on Monday


BANGKOK, Feb 18 — Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra will visit Malaysia on Monday, the introductory trip to the last remaining members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) since she took office in August of last year.

The visit was aimed at strengthening bilateral relations between the two neighbouring countries, which share some 650 kilometers of border.

The trip was postponed from October of last year due to the flood crisis in Thailand.

The Thai premier would take this opportunity to affirm close ties between Thailand and Malaysia along with showing Thailand’s readiness to cooperate with Malaysia at a bilateral level and under the ASEAN framework.

During the one day visit, Ms Yingluck was scheduled to meet her Malaysian counterpart Najib Tun Razak to discuss bilateral issues including a plan to revive the existing cooperation mechanism as Thailand would propose to host the Thai Malaysia Joint Commission (JC), Joint Development Strategy for Border Areas (JDS) during the first half of 2012 to lay groundwork for the 5th annual summit meeting between Thai and Malaysian leaders which Malaysia was expected to host.

Thailand and Malaysia would also seek close cooperation in border security including drug trafficking, human trafficking and arms smuggling.

Cooperation under the Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand – Growth Triangle (IMT-GT) and economic strategic development for ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) was also included in the agenda.

Ms Yingluck would also invite the Malaysian leader to attend the 21st World Economic Forum on East Asia that would be held in Thailand during May 30-June 1.