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Intellasia East Asia News – Saudi trip ‘breakthrough’

Experts believe prime minister Prayut Chan-o-cha’s visit to Saudi Arabia heralds a major breakthrough in efforts to restore diplomatic ties between the two countries, which have been strained for more than 30 years.

The visit is also expected to boost economic ties, especially via the renewed export of labourers to Saudi Arabia.

Prime minister Prayut will be in Saudi Arabia today for an official two-day visit which will end tomorrow in order to strengthen relations.

Gen Prayut was invited by His Royal Highness Prince Mohammad bin Salman, also Saudi Arabia’s deputy prime minister and minister of defence, according to a Thai government source.

This is the first official government visit in 30 years, said the source.

Saudi Arabia decided to downgrade diplomatic ties with Thailand and adopt a number of measures after the murder of Saudi diplomats and the disappearance of a Saudi businessperson in Bangkok following the Saudi gems theft case in 1989.

These included replacing the head of its diplomatic mission with a charge d’affaires, prohibiting Saudi Arabian nationals from travelling to Thailand and stopping Thai workers from being employed in the Middle Eastern nation.

These measures consequently hit travel between Thailand and Saudi Arabia and bilateral cooperation on labour, trade and investments.


Category: Thailand

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