Cambodia, Thailand to tap potential areas to boost bilateral ties

Cambodia and Thailand discussed a new course of action in trade, education, tourism, job, connectivity, security and defence on February 23-24.

Prak Sokhonn, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, and Don Pramudwinai, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand, stressed joint efforts to reach the $15 billion bilateral trade target by 2025.

They presided over the soft opening of the Cambodia-Thailand Friendship Bridge (Stung Bot-Ban Nong lan). The bridge will help increase cross-border trade and investment and improve connectivity. Sokhonn asked his counterpart to remove technical trade barriers for Cambodian agricultural products, according to a press release.

“Thailand will renew its cooperation in education by offering scholarships through the Thai International Cooperation Agency (TICA),” Pramudwinai said.

Both countries agreed to collaborate under the slogan of “Two Kingdoms, One Destination” and encouraged authorities along the borders to jointly organize events that will promote and facilitate tourist flow between the two nations.

They discussed immigration procedures and joint efforts to legalize Cambodian workers living in Thailand. Sokhonn urged a reduction in Thai employment visa fees for Cambodian workers, the press release stated.

The two ministers hailed the improvement of the National Road 67 that connects the Siem Reap province of Cambodia to the Sisaket province of Thailand. They also emphasised the importance of aviation cooperation, institutional capacity building and human resources training, it said.

The two countries agreed to strengthen cooperation and enhance coordination between law enforcement officials and underlined peaceful settlement of the border disputes for building a boundary of peace, cooperation and development.

Cambodia and Thailand shared the goal of mine-free land by 2025 and 2026, respectively. They agreed to enhance their partnership in transboundary multi-hazard prevention, mitigation and emergency response.

On regional and international frameworks, the two countries reiterated strengthening cooperation in ASEAN and the Mekong frameworks and helping Myanmar’s return to normalcy.

Prayut Chan-O-Cha, Prime Minister of Thailand, praised cooperation between the two foreign ministries and emphasised greater collaboration and mutual support for shared tangible benefits of peace and development along the border, including the opening of international points of entry wherever necessary, as well as the demining along the border, according to the release.