BEIJING – “I know that Chinese people like to eat durian,” Thai Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin said in a special interview with the Xinhua News Agency of China during his official visit to Beijing, where he attended the third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation.
Firstly, he commented on the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), which has become a strong bond connecting different countries worldwide as leaders from partner countries gathering here reaffirm their joint commitment to cooperation.
“Every country has its plans to propose and discuss at the forum, aiming to move forward with BRI cooperation,” Srettha said.
“The BRI is an important initiative that benefits all humanity by strengthening infrastructure construction, trade and investment, cultural and people-to-people exchanges,” he said, noting that Chinese President Xi Jinping’s keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the forum conveyed a clear signal that China adheres to peaceful development and opening up.
During the visit, Srettha also held talks with several heads of Chinese enterprises to attract investment into Thailand. “I am here to send the message that Thailand is ready to welcome investors from China,” Srettha said.
The Thai government is looking forward to enhancing cooperation with China in the electric vehicle industry, as many Chinese carmakers have invested in the country, which plays an important role in advancing Thailand’s industrialization, he said.
Additionally, another promising area for cooperation between the two nations lies in agriculture. Srettha eyes exporting more high-quality durians to China. “I know that Chinese people like to eat durian,” he said.
Srettha made China the first country outside the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) for an official visit, shortly after he took office as Thailand’s new prime minister.
The friendly relations between Thailand and China have a long history, and the people of the two countries support each other like one family, he said.
With a good business environment, Thailand hopes to participate in more Belt and Road projects with Chinese firms, maintain robust trade exchanges, and promote the further development of bilateral relations, said Srettha.