I have the honour to extend my warm greetings to the Thai community, our Filipino friends and distinguished fellows, ?Friends of Thailand? gathering here as the Kingdom of Thailand celebrates the auspicious occasion of the 81st Birthday Anniversary of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej.
The Royal Thai Embassy and Team Thailand in the Philippines humbly honours His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej for his extraordinary developmental work which has benefited Thais and contributed to the national development economically and socially. The King?s ideas translated to more than 4,300 Royal projects, uplifting the lives of the people, particularly the people who have less chance in the remote areas.? The King?s projects covered all aspects of development, concentrating on water resources, agriculture, environmental conservation, alternative energies such as bio-ethanol, and the concept of a sufficiency economy. Having a passionate interest and devotion in improving rice farming, the King became the Royal Patron of the International Rice Research Institute based in the Philippines. Thus, it is our sincere desire to follow in the footsteps and initiatives of His Majesty the King to further benefit Thai and Philippine relations. Moreover, Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn accepted an invitation of International Rice Research Institute to pay a visit to the institution on November 2009 on the occasion of the Institute?s 50th anniversary in 2010.
Thailand and the Philippines have a long-standing relationship as we share many common values. Over the past years, we have continuously worked together to strengthen our partnership bilaterally and regionally, as witnessed on the visits to the Philippines by the Prime Ministers in May and November 2008. On the political arena, the exchange of high level visits between Philippine and Thai leaders solidified both our government?s sincere cooperation. Our economic cooperation has grown steadily as shown in the constant increase on bilateral trade and investment. Meanwhile, Thailand?s investment in the Philippines has covered various sectors? ranging from banking, energy, construction,? hotel,? to? agriculture.
I am proud to say that investments from Thailand not only provide quality jobs but also practice corporate social responsibility which benefits the local community, from livelihood programs, scholarships, to renewable and environment-friendly sources of energy. On our military cooperation, both the defense of our two countries have continued to maintain close network and cooperation on various levels and areas. Our condolences also to the families of the nine crew members of the Philippine Air Force C-130 Hercules cargo that crashed at the southern region of the Philippines.? It is in this note that I would also like extend condolences to the families of the victims of Typhoon Frank, particularly to the passengers of MV Princess of the Stars which sank off Sibuyan Island in Romblon.
As we look forward to another year of fruitful cooperation, Thailand, Chairman of ASEAN, has the great privilege to work together with the Philippines and all ASEAN-member countries regionally, and globally, to further strengthen our partnership and assure that we can tackle any challenges particularly the high price of food and the global financial crisis. It is our honour, to provide a historical hosting for all ASEAN Members in celebrating an implementation of ASEAN Charter that will be held in Chiang Mai during the ASEAN Summit in December.
As Ambassador of the Kingdom of Thailand to the Republic of the Philippines, it is my honour to witness another major milestone in the friendly and dynamic relations between our two countries. As we approach 2009, the 60th Anniversary of Diplomatic Relations between the Kingdom of Thailand and the Republic of the Philippines presents an opportunity for the promotion and exchange of various activities. This celebration is truly significant as the Philippines is the first country in South East Asia wherein Thailand established diplomatic relations in 1949. We also share the privilege of being co-founders and active members of SEATO and ASEAN. The Embassy and the Team Thailand in the Philippines together with the Philippine authorities have lined up programmes aimed at enhancing our political, economic, social and cultural relations as well as people to people contacts. This event will serve as a unique opportunity for Thailand and Philippine communities to look back with great pride at what we have achieved together, while we look ahead towards the future to see how we can work collectively for mutual benefit.
Again, on this joyous and auspicious occasion, it is my deep honour to convey on behalf of the Royal Thai Government and the people of Thailand, my warmest greetings and best wishes to our close friends, the Government and the people of the Republic of the Philippines.? Mabuhay!