6 June 2024

ASEAN Secretary General Kao Kim Hourn will pay a three-day official visit to Thailand, from 29th to 31st March, as part of his familiarisation tour of the bloc’s member countries, according to an informed source. Earlier this month he was in Singapore.

Dr. Kim Hourn took office in January, succeeding Dato Paduka Lim Jock Hoi from Brunei Darussalam. The bloc’s new chief is an ASEAN expert and has held several senior positions in the Cambodian government. He was the two-term “Minister Delegated”, attached to the Prime Minister’s Office, before coming to Jakarta.

During his visit, he will be on a tight schedule that includes a courtesy call on Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha. He is scheduled to hold talks with Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai on matters related to ASEAN, the source added.

He will also visit the ASEAN Centre for Sustainable Development and Dialogue at Mahidol University. The centre was initiated by Thailand when it served as chair in 2019 to promote ASEAN cooperation on sustainable economic development. Furthermore, he will also visit the ASEAN Centre for Public Health Emergencies and Emerging Diseases (ACPHEED), which was opened last August.

Furthermore, he is scheduled to give a lecture titled “Why ASEAN Matters: Navigating Our Shared Future” on 30thMarch at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Dr. Kim Hourn is the first Cambodian to take this top job at the ASEAN Secretariat. He was appointed by the ASEAN Summit in Phnom Penh in November.

The ASEAN Charter stipulates that the ASEAN Secretary General serves a non-renewable 5-year term and is selected from among the members’ nationals in alphabetical rotation.