December 5th marks a special day for Thais and Thais around the world when they celebrate the birthday of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej the Great, as well as Thailand’s National Day and Father’s Day. The reason is obvious. Throughout the late 70 years of Her Majesty’s reign, Thailand has undergone a tremendous transformation from an “underdeveloped country” to an upper middle income country. The late Her Majesty’s love and tireless dedication to the people, to reach out and empower the poorest and most vulnerable in remote areas, was recognized by the United Nations with the inaugural Human Development Lifetime Achievement Award, and internationally recognized as the king of development. In fact, as a tribute to the late Her Majesty’s lifelong work on sustainable soil management, December 5th has also been designated as “World Soil Day” to raise awareness of the importance of healthy soil. , such a vital issue for climate change mitigation and sustainable food security.
Today, through thousands of projects initiated by royalty, the royal legacy continues under the new reign of His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn Phra Vajiraklaochaoyuhua and the Sufficiency Economy philosophy continues to guide the government. Thailand, the private sector and the Thai public to adopt sustainable development practices against the risks and uncertainties of the global economy and environment. Currently, the elected Thai government led by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has adopted the bio-circular-green economy (BCG) as a national agenda, and Thai companies are taking the lead in Southeast Asia in indices of Dow Jones Sustainability as an increasing number of Thai farmers have moved from a monoculture to an integrated farming system.
On this day, the United States also holds a special place in the hearts of the Thai people as the birthplace of the late Her Majesty, born in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Indeed, Thailand is very proud of the long-standing friendship with the United States from the first contact recorded over 200 years ago, until the first Asian country to conclude a treaty of friendship and trade there. 188 years ago, until a longtime treaty partner and NATO ally. Thailand is also home to one of the largest US embassies in the world. Meanwhile, America is home to the largest Thai community abroad, scattered across all states, Thai expats and Thai Americans have been instrumental in promoting bilateral relations.
Today, the United States and Thailand have a strong bilateral trade and investment relationship that continues to thrive despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Our partnership covers all areas of cooperation and extends to multilateral and regional forums such as the UN, ASEAN, Mekong and APEC. The latter of which Thailand has just taken the rotating presidency and has set the theme “open, connect, balance” for APEC 2022.
The new US administration headed by President Joe Biden has revitalized US-Thai relations. Over the past six months, Thailand has been honored to host high-level visits from the White House, State Department, Pentagon, Indo-Pacific Command and Congress. Thailand also deeply appreciates the generous medical donation from the United States, especially the timely vaccine donations, the second batch of which arrived in November, just as Thailand is reportedly reopening to foreign visitors.
As the world slowly recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic, it is very important for the United States to help rebuild a better future for the world through a rapid and sustainable global economic recovery supported by a peaceful global environment. and stable. Thailand is ready to work with our US partners in this endeavor and there are many opportunities for US companies as Thailand sets out to upgrade its economy to Industry 4.0 in sectors where US technology takes the lead, such as as the digital economy, healthcare and pharmaceuticals, energy and electric vehicles, to name a few. Already, American companies enjoy a strong presence in Thailand which has positioned itself as a reliable partner in the global supply chain with a strategic location at the heart of the ASEAN economic community, a gateway between Asia. South and East, and increasingly integrated into the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership which will enter into force in early 2022.
On this auspicious day, all friends are invited to join the Thai people in celebrating the Thai National Day and the long-standing bonds of friendship between the United States and Thailand.
For more information on Thailand and the work of the Royal Thai Embassy located in Washington, DC, visit here.