The “Contemporary China and the World” Chinese-Thai Youth Cultural Exchange Forum held in Bangkok

On April 24, the “Contemporary China and the World” Chinese-Thai Youth Cultural Exchange Forum was held in Bangkok, Thailand. The event was sponsored by the Academy of Contemporary China and World Studies (ACCWS) under China International Communications Group (CICG), CICG Asia-Pacific, and the Bangkok-based Belt and Road Cooperation Research Center, organized by CICG Asia-Pacific Bangkok Bureau, and supported by the Thai-Chinese Cultural & Relationship Council, the Thai-Chinese Strategic Research Center, Chandrakasem Rajabhat University of Thailand, the Asian Leader newspaper, and the Bangkok Today newspaper. Themed “Sino-Thai Youth and the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI),” the forum is part of the “Panda Cup” Thai Youth Experiencing China project.

Pinit Jarusombat

At the opening ceremony of the forum, former Deputy Prime Minister of Thailand and President of Thai-Chinese Cultural & Relationship Council Pinit Jarusombat, emphasized that exchanges between Thai and Chinese youth play an important role in the development of friendly relations between the two countries. “I expect more exchange activities like today’s forum to help the young generation of Thai people have a better understanding of China’s achievements and experience in promoting national development in the past decades,” he said. “The Thai-Chinese Cultural & Relationship Council is ready to provide support in this respect.”

Han Zhiqiang

Chinese Ambassador to Thailand Han Zhiqiang said in his remarks that on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the BRI, the forum provided a welcome opportunity for young people from China and Thailand to get together and share their views on the BRI. He stressed that Thailand is an important participant of the BRI and that the country’s 20-year strategic plan and Thailand 4.0 policy with a focus on the Bio-Circular-Green Economic Model share common goals with China-proposed BRI. Ambassador Han also applauded the success of the “Panda Cup” Thai Youth Experiencing China project and said that related events have encouraged the Thai youth to express their views on China’s development, China-Thailand relations, and China-ASEAN relations as well as offer suggestions for BRI cooperation between China and Thailand.

Gao Anming

CICG Vice President and Editor-in-Chief Gao Anming said China and Thailand have in recent years made substantial progress in jointly implementing the BRI and promoting traditional friendship and the comprehensive strategic partnership. He noted that the young generation will shape the future of China-Thailand relations. In this regard, he proposed measures to deepen Chinese-Thai youth exchange, strengthen youth cooperation in technological innovation, and build mutually beneficial mechanisms for youth cooperation. An influential organization dedicated to international communication, CICG will carry out more exchange activities to contribute to building a more stable, prosperous and sustainable China-Thailand community with a shared future, Gao added.

Roundtable meeting during the forum

At a roundtable meeting themed “Contemporary China and the World in the New Era,” youth leaders from Thailand’s political arena, media outlets, think tanks, and business and cultural communities exchanged their opinions on topics including the BRI, Thai-Chinese youth cultural exchange, innovative cooperation, and social responsibility of the young generation.

During the forum, the award ceremony of the inaugural “Panda Cup” Thai Youth Essay Contest was held. Themed “Me and China,” the contest attracted widespread attention and active participation from young people in Thailand. Initiated in 2014, the “Panda Cup” Youth Essay Contest has been successfully organized in Japan for nine consecutive sessions.

A group photo of Chinese Ambassador to Thailand Han Zhiqiang (second left), CICG Vice President and Editor-in-Chief Gao Anming (third left), President of CICG Asia-Pacific Chen Wenge (first left), and President of Thai-Chinese Cultural & Relationship Council Pinit Jarusombat (fourth left), and award winners of the “Panda Cup” Thai Youth Essay Contest.

During the forum, the survey results of the Thai people’s understanding of China were jointly released by the ACCWS and the Belt and Road Cooperation Research Center. The survey found that social media has become the main channel for the Thai public to obtain China-related information. With a rising demand in Thailand for Chinese news, the BRI has become a calling card of China in the eyes of the survey respondents. The survey also put forward suggestions on enhancing the Thai people’s understanding and recognition of China and promoting youth exchange and research cooperation between the two sides.

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