Premier Li Keqiang discussed China-Thailand economic cooperation during a meeting with Thailand’s First Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan in Beijing on Dec 12.
Somkid Jatusripitak, deputy prime minister of Thailand, who is in China for the meeting of the China-Thailand Joint Committee on Trade, Investment and Economic Cooperation, also attended the meeting.
Premier Li described China and Thailand as family-like neighbors and important partners in cooperation and development.
He said China is willing to strengthen high-level exchanges with Thailand, deepen people-to-people exchanges, and expand pragmatic cooperation in defense, law enforcement and security.
“This year I have reached a new consensus with Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha on efforts to promote the China-Thailand railway,” Premier Li said.
A memorandum signed by the China-Thailand Joint Committee on Trade, Investment and Economic Cooperation paves the way for the next stage of cooperation on the railway. China is willing to join efforts with Thailand to develop the railway construction and provide benefits to the people of the two countries, he added.
The Premier also stressed that under the current economic and political climate, efforts should be made to strengthen consensus on regional economic integration in East Asia, especially the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).
China endorses the central role of the Association of Southeast Asia Nations (ASEAN) in regional cooperation and is willing to enhance coordination and communication with Thailand and other countries on negotiations on the economic partnership, he noted.
Prawit noted that China and Thailand enjoy a profound friendship and the development strategy between the two countries is mutually beneficial and complementary.
As a delegate of Prime Minister Prayuth, Prawit came to China to report on the development of China-Thailand cooperation and Thailand’s willingness to accelerate major inter-connectivity projects such as the China-Thailand railway and enhance cooperation in sectors such as tourism, internet, agriculture, law enforcement, and security.
As an ASEAN member, Thailand is willing to play a positive role in promoting consensus and accelerating development of the RCEP, which is a significant initiative that will provide benefits to Asia, he added.