6 June 2024

Thailand and Russia will hold a Joint Thai-Russian Commission on Bilateral Cooperation in Bangkok on April 26th and 27th to strengthen cooperation of mutual interest, according to an informed source. 

It will be the last major bilateral meeting of the caretaker Thai government before the general election on May 14th.

The commission was established in 1993 to promote bilateral ties. The upcoming Bangkok meeting will be the 8th session and will build on the progress made in 2022. Thailand’s Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai will chair the session with Alexey Chekunkov, Minister for the Development of the Russian Far East and Arctic, who will represent Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

The joint commission will be attended by representatives from more than a dozen agencies that are involved in various areas of Thai – Russian cooperation. The meeting will review various fields of cooperation during the past year and exchange views on how further to promote and develop cooperation in areas of mutual interest, such as political, security, economic, science and technological, agricultural, educational and cultural issues.

Prior to 2022, Thai – Russian relations were very dynamic, with concrete cooperation in several fields. For example, activities were conducted to celebrate the 125th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations last year, as well as several exchanges of high-level visits and meetings. Several sub-commissions and joint working groups were held on a regular basis, such as those on economic cooperation and trade, agriculture, banking, energy, tourism, environment and security.

Two months after Thailand reopened its doors to foreign tourists, a total 387,500 Russia tourists had landed in the country, which was more than 90% of total tourist arrivals.

Despite the constant pressure from Western friends and allies to take a hard-line approach towards Russia, Thailand has maintained its independent policy and neutral stand. Throughout the Russia-Ukraine war, Thailand voted in favour of the two UN General Assembly resolutions, while abstaining from one related to the biggest war in Europe since World War II.