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(July 5, 2022) Time to strategise Thai-Philippine ties

Newly elected Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr met with Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai soon after being sworn in. It was his first meeting with a dignitary from Asean though he had earlier met with representatives from the US, China and Japan. Suddenly, the old flame of friendship between Thailand and the Philippines was being rekindled.

It was supposed to be a 15-minute courtesy call but turned out to be a hefty discussion session lasting 35 minutes. The two talked about food security in the Philippines, Asean affairs and the crisis in Myanmar, as well as prospects for Thailand and Philippine relations. They even found time for a little nostalgia, reminiscing about the visit of the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej the Great and Queen Sirikit the Queen Mother to Manila in July 1963 even though the invitation came from the late president Diosdado Macapagal. Five years later, President Ferdinand Marcos made a three-day state visit to Bangkok in June 1968. King Bhumibol presented an honorary degree of law to the president. Now his son has told Mr Don that he will be attending the Apec 2022 leaders' meeting in November in Bangkok.