BANGKOK – Thailand has spoken in support of Vietnam as chair of ASEAN in 2020, and thanked Vietnam for supporting Thailand as this year’s ASEAN chair. Meanwhile, bilateral trade between the two countries is expected to total 20 billion dollars next year.
Prime Minister/Defense Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha held bilateral talk with Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc on the sidelines of the 35th ASEAN Summit and related summits in Bangkok. The Thai prime minister assured the Vietnamese PM of Thailand’s support for Vietnam as chair of ASEAN in 2020, while the Vietnamese prime minister complemented Thailand on its role as chair of ASEAN in 2019, and the push for the creative development of ASEAN; he thanked Thailand for taking care of Vietnamese migrant workers and for supporting Vietnam as next year’s ASEAN chair.
Bilateral trade between the two countries has already increased and Thailand has sought to promote cooperation in the sustainable management of water in the Mekong sub-region under the framework of the Mekong River Commission and Mekong-Lancang Commission.
Both sides admired their bilateral relationship, while the Thai prime minister raised concerns over climate change such as cross-border forest fires and haze problems, for which the cooperation of ASEAN states is essential if the problem is to be solved. Thailand and Vietnam anticipate a total of 20 billion dollars in bilateral trade in 2020 with both leaders agreeing to provide accommodation for investors.
The Thai prime minister called on his Vietnamese counterpart to extend the period of time permitted for Vietnam’s importation of automotive parts from Thailand, and confirmed Thailand will gladly provide its experience in solving the IUU issue to help upgrade Vietnam’s fishing industry.