Phnom Penh: Jean-François Tain, the Minister attached to the Prime Minister in charge of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, revealed plans for new diplomatic missions in each other's territories. Cambodia is set to open a Consulate General in Songkhla Province, Thailand, while Thailand intends to establish its Consulate General in Siem Reap, Cambodia.
The announcement came during a press briefing on the outcomes of Cambodian President Hun Manet's recent visit to Thailand on February 7, 2024. Jean-François Tain highlighted the mutual decision to enhance diplomatic relations through these new consulates, emphasizing the anticipated boost in tourism, trade, and investment that these establishments aim to bring about.
"By setting up these consular offices, we are not just expanding our diplomatic footprint but also laying the groundwork for a stronger partnership that will benefit our citizens in tangible ways," Jean-François Tain remarked. He further noted that in 2023, Thai nationals constituted the largest group of foreign tourists to Cambodia, with nearly 2 million visitors, surpassing even the numbers from China and Vietnam. The bilateral trade volume between the two nations also saw a significant increase, surpassing $8 billion.
In a move to facilitate cross-border movement, especially in anticipation of the Khmer New Year, both countries have agreed to ease visa fees, reinforcing their commitment to enhancing tourism cooperation under the theme "Two Kingdoms, One Destination."
This development is seen as a milestone in Cambodia-Thailand relations, promising to foster a closer relationship between the two Southeast Asian neighbors.