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VISIT Energy cooperation, reconciliation on agenda


March 15, 2008

Energy cooperation, reconciliation on agenda

Thai Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej is paying a one-day official visit to Myanmar on Friday to boost cooperation in the energy sector, particularly regarding natural gas and hydropower resources, and to encourage national reconciliation.

Samak is accompanied by Foreign Minister Noppadon Pattama and Gen. Anupong Paochinda, Thailand's army chief, reported Thai News Agency.

“Thailand hope to see national reconciliation and development towards democracy in Myanmar. However, we will not interfere with the neigbouring country's internal affairs, but stands ready to provide technical support to facilitate Myanmar's national referendum on its new constitution if requested,” Noppadon was quoted as telling reporters befor his departure.

The introductory visit is not only to strengthen the two countries bilateral relationship in general but also to mark the special occasion of the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Thailand and Myanmar.

On Samak itenarary is a trip to Myanmar’s new capital Nay Pyi Taw to meet the junta and to stop over in Yangon, the former capital, to preside over the opening of a new Thai embassy, before visiting the Shwedagon Pagoda and returning to Bangkok on Friday evening.

Samak is not expected to raise the issue of political developments in Myanmar, which will nevertheless come up during the next Asean summit later this year.

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