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Lithuania and Thailand strengthen relations
Sunday, 14 May, Bangkok, Thailand – President Dalia Grybauskaitė began her visit in Southeast Asia with meting Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand. This is a reciprocal visit and the second meeting of the President with the member of the royal family. In March of last year, Her Royal Highness came for an official visit to Lithuania. Before the meeting, the President honored the memory of the King Rama IX who passed away last year.
At the meeting with Her Royal Highness Princess of Thailand, the strengthening of bilateral relations, cooperation in the areas of economics, business, innovations and tourism were discussed, with a special focus on the protection of rights of women and children, their social security and education.
Dalia Grybauskaitė underscored that, in recent years, growing friendship and relations between Lithuania and Thailand opened up wide opportunities for businesses and people of both countries.
Thailand, the biggest Southeast Asian investor in Lithuania with a consumer market of 68 million, aims to build its economy on the highest technologies. Lithuania is one of the main producers of scientific lasers in the world, has the fastest growing sector of life sciences in the EU and is well known in the areas of biotechnologies and renewable energy. Therefore, cooperation with Thailand in these areas has a huge potential and is in line with the economic interests of Lithuania.
The increase of Lithuanian export by 26 percent last year and improving bilateral trade indicators demonstrate growing cooperation between the two countries. A Thai factory of plastic granules that has created 120 jobs operates in Klaipėda. More and more Lithuanians discover Thailand: 10 thousand Lithuanian tourists visited Thailand last year.
The President and Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn discussed ways of strengthening women’s and children’s rights protection. The President chairs the Council of Women World Leaders that focusses on the promotion of women’s leadership and fight against domestic violence. A twelve-month national campaign “For a Safe Lithuania” that encourages adoption and foster parenting aims to stop violence and bullying, prevents suicides and helps people suffering from addictions was introduced by the President as a success story of a mobilizing social safety campaign.
Cultural relations were also discussed at the meeting. Lithuania and Thailand are linked through the tradition of Sanskrit. The Lithuanian language, the least departed from the Indo-European mother-tongue, has retained a number of its archaic words. In Thailand, Sanskrit is related to Buddhism. The President made Her Royal Highness a present of a book “Sanskrit-Lithuanian String” by Vytis Vidūnas.
Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn writes poems and short stories and is interested in Sanskrit. As the UNESCO’s Goodwill Ambassador, Her Royal Highness focusses on education, development of technologies, environment protection, humanitarian activity and charity. It is under her initiative that the ancient traditions of handcraft and shadow play were revived and the temples are being restored.
Press Service of the President