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Thai dinner & discussions

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Britain’s Ambassador to Thailand, Quentin Quayle, hosted a dinner for visiting Foreign Office Minister, Meg Munn, on Thursday 28th February. Thailand recently returned to democracy following elections in December and the formation of a new Government in January. Meg is one of the first overseas Ministers to visit Thailand since this new Government was formed. 

Discussions focused on the future of the UK-Thai relationship and prospects for the new Thai Government. The Thai guests believed that it is essential for more Thai people to become fluent in English and look to the UK Government to assist - the possibilities of further developing the work of the British Council in Thailand were discussed.  

It was felt that the new Government would be more open to foreign business and investors, something important for the Thai economy. The return of former Prime Minister Thaksin to Bangkok earlier in the day was also discussed, with a view expressed that this is an important step in moving on from the past.  

Guests at the dinner included Mr. Virasakdi Futrakul, Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and his colleague, Mr Suthee Na Lumpang, Director General of the Department for European Affairs, Mr Chaturon Chaisaeng the former Education Minister, Mr Vikrom Koompirochana a former Thai Ambassador to London, Mr Suthichai Yoon, Group Editor in Chief of The Nation, Dr Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Director of the Institute of Security and International Studies and Mr Sunai Phasuk from Human Rights Watch.  

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