Amb.Sarun Charoensuwan of the Royal Thai Embassy in Korea hosted a National Day Reception on Dec. 1 at Lotte Hotel in downtown Seoul on the auspicious occasion of the 87th Birthday Anniversary of His Majesty the King of Thailand.
The birthday of King Bhumibol Adulyadej.which falls on Dec. 5, is celebrated with much fanfare in Thailand each year.
On hand at the gala reception were members of the diplomatic corps accredited to Korea, prominent invited guests from Korean government, private sector, academia and the Thai community in Korea.
Mr.Hyun Jong-jin is one of the nation's leading contemporary wood carving artists,
Hyun Jong-jin fully lives up to his fame as one of the best disciples of Jun Ki-man who has been designated as Intangible Cultural Asset Korea No. 108 by the Korean government in wood carving art areas. Mr. Hyun presented his latest art work known as "Jukbiza" to Thai ambassador during the ceremony as a token of friendship. His wood carving work is made of Zelkova serrata which is commonly called Japanese zelkova.
"I tried my best to put the spirit of Zen and Buddhism phillosophy into my art work," he said.Zen is a school of Mahayana Buddhism that originated in China during the Tang dynasty as Chan Buddhism. Zen school was strongly influenced by Taoism and developed as a distinct school of Chinese Buddhism. From China, Chan Buddhism spread south to Vietnam, northeast to Korea and east to Japan, where it became known as Japanese Zen and known as Seon buddihism in Korea.
South Korea and Thailand established diplomatic relations on October 1, 1958.
During the Korean War, Thailand was the second nation to send troops to support South Korea, just after the United States.
Thai economy expanded by 3.5% in the first half of 2017. Stronger-than-expected growth in agriculture and exports offset subdued investment to sustain a GDP growth rate in line with the Asian Development Outlook 2017 forecast in April.
The current account surplus is now seen to come in at 8.5% of GDP and inflation at 0.7%, both lower than the April forecasts. Growth and inflation are likely to edge up in 2018, and the current account surplus to shrink.
The following is the full text of speech made by Amb.Sarun Charoensuwan of the Royal Thai Embassy at the National Day reception.
I am very honored that His Excellency Mr. Park Joo-sun, Deputy Speaker of National Assembly of Republic of Korea, can join us as our Guest of Honour today. I sincerely thank Mr. Park for attending the Royal Cremation Ceremony of His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok on 26th October, as the special envoy of the President of the Republic of Korea, together with representatives from all the main political parties.
I also would like to welcome all honored guests to today’s reception to celebrate the occasions of the National Day of the Kingdom of Thailand, the Birthday Anniversary of His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, as well as Thailand’s Father’s Day, all of which fall on the fifth (5th) of December.
Each year, on the fifth (5th) of December, Thai citizens would gather to show our profound respect to His Majesty the late King and the fifth (5th) of December this year will mark the 90th Birthday Anniversary of His Majesty. Sitting on the throne since 1946, the late King reigned over Thailand until his passing on the thirteenth (13th) of October 2016.
.For seven decades, His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej worked tirelessly to improve the lives of the Thai people. Through thousands of development projects that His Majesty initiated over his lifetime, His Majesty oversaw a period of profound social, economic and development transformation across the country, particularly helping the rural population to become self-reliant, and lifting them out of poverty.
Over the course of his reign, His Majesty developed the “Sufficiency Economy” which is a philosophy that underlines the middle path as an overriding principle for appropriate conduct, stressing moderation, reasonableness, and the need for self-immunity to protect from impacts arising from internal and external change.
Thailand has adopted His Majesty’s Philosophy of Sufficiency Economy as its approach to national development for more than 40 years. With this approach, Thailand has been able to overcome various crises and develop the country in accordance with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
King Bhumibol was beloved as the “People’s King” and regarded far and wide as “Father of the Nation”. For this reason, the Thai Government has also declared the fifth (5th) of December as Thailand’s Father’s Day.
Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen
The fifth (5th) of December each year is also dedicated as the “World Soil Day” by the United Nations General Assembly. The purpose of the “World Soil Day” is to promote and raise awareness of the importance of soil as an entity towards agriculture development, nutrition and food security.
For the Thai people, we recall the tireless personal commitment of His Majesty to the cause of soil, particularly His Majesty’s numerous initiatives to improve the quality of soil in Thailand to help develop the agricultural sector which is the backbone of the Thai economy and, in so doing, raise the livelihood of the farmers.
With the passing of King Bhumibol Adulyadej, Thailand now has a new king: His Majesty the King Maha Vajiralongkorn Bodindradebayavarangkun, the son of the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, ascended the throne since the first (1st) of December 2016.
For all Thais, the Monarchy will remain an important and inseparable part of the country and its people, and continue to serve as the institution that will keep the country and the people together.
Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen.
Today’s reception also celebrates the long-lasting friendship between the Kingdom of Thailand and the Republic of Korea.
Our strong bond was forged through the heroic sacrifices of our brave servicemen and women who fought side-by-side during the Korean War.
What started as a military and security cooperation between our two countries over half a century ago, quickly expanded to encompass ties in all fields, and has now matured into a strategic partnership. Please be assured that Thailand will continue its role in maintaining peace and security in the Korean Peninsula through the strict implementation of relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions.
On the economic front, our economic relations have continued to show positive momentum. Korea continues to be one of Thailand's top trading partners. The total volume of two-way trade from January to October 2017 amounted to 10.6 billion US dollars, up 13.79 % over the same period last year.
In terms of investment, Korea is Thailand’s sixth largest source of foreign investment. Thailand has continued to serve as an investment destination and a manufacturing base for leading Korean companies, such as Samsung Electronics, LG Electronics and POSCO, which has just rolled out its first automotive steel manufacturing plant in Southeast Asia in Rayong last year.
Currently, the two governments are working closely in many areas of cooperation, for example, rail and water management. Be that as it may, there is still ample room to further enhance our economic relations.
Looking to the future, Thailand’s aspiration is to become a hub of regional connectivity and we are actively working to realize it, through a number of mega infrastructure projects to better link its provinces as well as link Thailand and its neighbors. The Thai Government has embarked on the policy of “Thailand 4.0” that aims to integrate new core elements, such as innovation, knowledge, technology and creativity into the economy. To realize all this, we hope to learn from Korea's expertise and best practices in infrastructure development, smart city, R&D, and innovative technologies, especially, digital, ICT, Internet of Things and biotechnology.
On people-to-people relations, this year, it is expected that around one point six eight (1.68) million Koreans will visit Thailand ( a 15 percent increase from last year) and the number of Thai visitors to the Republic of Korea will be much higher than last year which reached nearly five hundred thousand. More and more Thais love to travel to the Republic of Korea owing to the success of the Hallyu.
Looking ahead, Thailand and the Republic of Korea will celebrate the 60th anniversary of our diplomatic relations next year which will present another good opportunity to further reinvigorate and deepen our ties. Thailand and the Republic of Korea are also actively cooperating under the framework of ASEAN, and we note with appreciation President Moon’s new Southern Policy which gives importance to ASEAN.
Excellencies, Ladies and gentlemen,
I take this opportunity to thank friends and colleagues of the diplomatic corps, and all “Friends of Thailand” for joining us to celebrate this meaningful occasion today. May you all be blessed with good health and happiness in the New Year 2018.