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Thailand, Myanmar to sign MoU on key issues

The Cabinet yesterday acknowledged Myanmar President Thein Sein's visit to Thailand, which is scheduled on June 4-5, when both countries will sign a memorandum of understanding on key issues, including a proposal to hand Myanmar the Asean chairmanship for the next term.

In addition, feasibility studies will be done on the much-heralded plans to build a trilateral highway from India to Thailand via Myanmar, and the second Thai-Myanmar friendship bridge over Moei River across from Tak's Mae Sot district. There will also be projects on electricity infrastructure developments, including renewable energy.

This MoU will be valid for five years and will be automatically extended every five years unless both countries terminate it after providing a written notice six months in advance.

In a move to prepare Myanmar for the Asean chairmanship in 2014, Thai authorities will conduct training programmes and provide necessary facilities such as a press centre.

In terms of combating transnational crimes, both countries will join hands in tackling human trafficking and narcotics trade by coordinating more closely at the national level.

The other areas the countries will cooperate in are tourism, natural resources and disaster management, education, agriculture and health. They will also address issues related to central banks, supervision of banking services, trade and investment promotion as well as the stock exchange.

The two countries will later discuss and agree upon the financial implications and funds needed for all these projects.

Mechanisms of cooperation will be at three levels: government-to-government via a joint commission, regional border commission, joint boundary commission, joint trade commission and township border commission. At the business-to-business level, it will be through a Thai-Myanmar business council that will help implement projects in the areas of trade, investment, banking and finance as well as Corporate Social Responsibility. And at the people-to-people level, bilateral associations for friendship will be set up.


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