11 July 2024

Former Thai ambassador to China Viboon Koosakul has suggested that Thailand learn to make adjustments to accommodate modern China which is now entering an era of innovation.

Viboon described China’s economic and geopolitical influence as a “strong wind” and that Thailand “needs to learn how to adjust its sail.”

Speaking at a recent panel discussion on how Thailand should cope with China’s strategy, Viboon said Thailand must learn to better understand modern China.  He said with President Xi Jinping at the helm, modern China is more complicated but it will continue to develop.

He said Thailand should watch closely the forthcoming meeting between President Xi Jinping and US President Donald Trump at the G20 summit in Argentina during November 30-December 1 which will take place as the two economic superpowers engage in a trade war.

For Thai businessmen wanting to invest in modern China, he said they should do so in the field of innovations otherwise they should not go there.

When exploring China, he said, one should take a look at its new generation, especially the middle-class population estimated at about 250 million, which will emerge as an important group of people.

The future of Thai-Chinese relationship, he said, lies with China’s middle class.

Speaking at the same forum, Associate Professor Niyom Rat-amarith, dean of the Pridi International College, Thammasat University, pointed at the collective leadership led by President Xi Jinping as modern China’s outstanding feature for their long-term  vision – which is to reclaim its position as a dominant world leader.

China, he said, was a world leader for 1,800 years and is now making steps to reclaim that position.

Western nations, he said, often view bilateral or multilateral relations in the context of conflicting interests, but China views it in the context of mutual cooperation and benefit.